Taiwanese scientists (not boffins, mind...) have unveiled a personal Internet device (PID) made from WiMax chips and a board that runs a version of Google's Android software.
The Industrial Technology Research Institute developed the mobile device to show off its chip kit, which is a circuit board with several chips that's designed for WiMax.
According to Linux World, the PID manages to do something that Intel has been trying to peddle under its mobile Internet device (MID) marketing scheme. It is similar to a smartphone but can't make phone calls - it's just for Internet connections.
The only difference is that the PID uses microprocessors from ARM Holdings instead of Intel. The Android OS is tweaked for PID devices and WiMax.
Wu Cheng-wen, general director of ITRI's system-on-a-chip (SoC) Technology Centre said that Android was used because it didn't need a lot of additional work.
The kernal was there and the software was already done. However the task of optimising it for the PID still took nearly a year.
The WiMax chip is the MIMO chip designed by ITRI to reduce costs for WiMax device developers. The board also has an ARM926 microprocessor and two digital signal processors.
It was developed as part of the Taiwanese government's M-Taiwan programme, which aims to ensure that people all over Taiwan, including those in remote mountain villages and offshore islands, will be able to access the Internet wirelessly.