Will MIDs Replace Your Mobile Phone?

In the midst of all the different mobile phones and smartphones, a niche is being carved out. Mobile Internet Device, or MIDs, are wirelessly connected devices that are designed for web browsing and email.

Wikipedia talks about MIDs as if the platform only came into being in 2007 when Intel announced a prototype MID. Various MID hardware platforms have been announced (McCaslin, Menlow, Moorestown and Medfield) so, I guess, we can concentrate on the MID as being a platform being pushed by Intel although the term is generic enough that it can be applied to a bunch of other mobile computing devices. For example, the iPad is, in our view, could be considered a MID as are many of the Ultra Mobile PCs (UMPCs) that hit the market a few years ago.

Intel is working on both the hardware, through the hardware platform they're developing, and software with a Linux distro called Moblin - the name's a contraction Mobile Linux.

The MID hardware platform consists of a System on Chip (codenamed "Lincroft") that integrates a 45nm Intel Atom processor core, graphics, video and memory controller. The current version of the platform, "Moorestown", is expected to reduce idle power consumption by a factor of greater than 10 compared to today's Atom processor-based MIDs. Like Snapdragon, the goal is fast processing with reduced power consumption.

Intel is getting some major hardware players to join them on the MID train. LG committed to the platform last year and Intel has created a number of resources to support software developers in creating applications for the platform. There are even porting guides for iPhone developers.

With the various tablet, netbooks and smartphone platforms that already around I'm left wondering what MID brings to the table...

MobileModo is Gizmodo Australia’s look at the rise and rise of the mobile phone, from Bell’s landline to the ubiquitous mobiles of today

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