My first desktop had a 30GB hard disk, and 500MB RAM. You also had to wait for the annoyingly slow dial-up modem to connect and give you frustratingly slow internet. We’ve come a long way since. Now, they pack faster processors into cellphones. It was only a matter of time then that someone came up with a pocket computer. The Panache Air PC actually calls itself the “world’s smallest and lightest”. But the question is, beyond the obvious gimmick, can you actually get work done on it?
What’s good: The plug-and-play device comes with Windows 10 pre-installed. And it boots up in nearly no time, transforming your television screen into your desktop home screen (it connects via an HDMI cable). The USB and micro-USB options mean that connecting your regular mouse and keyboards is pretty simple. The 2GB RAM handles basic internet browsing quite effectively, as it does basic Office software. The on-board storage comes in two variants – 16 and 32 GB, which feels on the lower end. But it is expandable to 128GB, which is satisfactory.
What’s not: The limited USB ports means that you need to invest in a wireless keyboard and a wireless mouse. Beyond that, if you’d like to plug in anything else, there’s no scope of doing so. The limited RAM also means that the device has limitations when it comes to running heavy, photo-editing software or heavy-duty games. So, effectively, we were left running little beyond Chrome, Word and browsing YouTube videos on the device. Also, we also wish they’d found a way to let us connect our smartphone, and control the device using it.
Verdict: The PC on a stick is definitely the beginning of something new. But as is always the case with a generation one device, it rides more on coolth than it does on specifications. We still have some way to go before it replaces your desktop or your laptop. So, get it if space is an issue, or if you just want to show off.
What: Panache Air PC
At a glance: Intel Quad-core Processor, 1.33Ghz, 2GB DDR3 RAM, Wi-Fi, HDMI, USB, Micro-USB port, Windows 10
Best price: Rs 8,950, on flipkart.com
USP: “World’s smallest and lightest pocket computer”