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(Nikkei BP Group)

(No.1 High-Tech News Site in Japanese)

  • Casio Computer Unveils Low-Priced Mail-Only Terminal
  • March 10, 1999 (TOKYO) — Casio Computer Co., Ltd. unveiled on March 2 its Me-tel PM-C101 email-only terminal equipped with a personal handyphone system (PHS) feature.
    Casio’s new device is compliant with the text-based content information services that the DDI Pocket Telephone group launched in February. The Me-tel device (pronounced as May-Tel) is designed to send and receive text with up to 1,000 characters as well as video data with handwritten memos. According to Casio, it can receive text from text-based information services.

    The Me-tel features a touch-panel liquid crystal display (LCD) screen. Its LCD screen displays black as well as three colors, orange, green, and blue. The LCD is a 96 x 64 dot resolution screen and it can display up to 60 “kanji” characters (12 columns x 5 lines). The unit is equipped with an EL back-light.

    The colors can be applied to handwritten memos and illustrations. When handwritten messages are sent as Internet mail, a personal computer will receive them as image data.

    The compact device is very light at just 120g. It measures 103.4mm wide by 67.5mm deep by 20.6mm high.

    The price has not yet been decided, but it is estimated to be slightly more than 5,000 yen (121.60 yen = US$1). Casio believes that a low price will encourage impulse buying.

    The product will be available at the end of April, and Casio targets monthly production of about 30,000 units.

    The email services that the terminal can send and receive are DDI Pocket Telephone group’s text message services, such as the “P Mail DX,” and “P Mail.”

    Other users of Me-tel devices can exchange email messages with sound clips, animation, illustrations and messages with decoration frames. Users input text messages on a keyboard-like image displayed on the screen.

    Lithium-ion batteries are used for the power source. Time available in the continuous standby mode is about 500 hours. Repeated exchanges of messages consisting of about 100 characters every three minutes will consume the battery power in about five hours.

    (BizTech News Dept.)

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