Gemini PDA: the most exciting mobile product I have seen in 10 years


The folks at UK-based Planet Computers want to bring back the idea of a small, clamshell computer. And they’ve partnered with the designer of the classic Psion Series 5 to do it.

The Gemini is basically a tiny laptop featuring a 5.7 inch display, a QWERTY keyboard, and modern specs. It’s designed to run Android, but there’s also a dual-boot Linux option.

Planet Computer hopes to start shipping the first Gemini units in November, and the company is running an Indieogogo campaign in hopes of raising $200,000 for the project… More at Liliputing.

I am biased to say the least when it comes to a device like this, but look at the video below and see what you think.

The fact that the Psion 5 designers are involved is a huge plus and the heritage is shown by the clever way the hinge holds up the screen when on a flat surface. The huge battery life, Linux and Android dual-boot OS and keyboard design suggest to me that it could be a product that more than a few people will want.

Some will see it as a niche product, but I believe that niche will be big enough to get things up and running and then who knows what will follow. I have wanted a product like this ever since I had to give up my Psion PDAs, and they have have my money now.

Categories: Tech News

12 replies

  1. Hmmm, I’m not sure, but I like the idea.

  2. I agree with Tom. Will it work? Of course, it will. In fact, I used to have a ‘case’ for one of my Galaxy S (4?) phones which had a slide out case.
    Will it sell? I am not entirely sure. As a phone, it only offers functionality when open, apart from perhaps making and taking calls. This will be its downfall. If they followed a ‘Nokia communicator’ model, where you have some functionality with the device open, it would have faired a lot better.
    All in all, I am happy that people are looking at this approach again. I have been a big fan of keyboards on phones and this will only enhance the case of the Blackberry KeyOne.

    • Thing is that I wouldn’t call it a phone. It is a PDA with 4G for data mainly. Wireless headphones would do for calls, but I see what you mean- people may struggle to cope with not being able to see notifications in an instant.

      • Indeed. Sadly we are too hooked to that design at the moment, and have ultrabooks/tablets for everything else.

        • Then again. What if this can be used for real work and what if it is more practical than a tablet for writing, spreadsheet, work etc etc? It could compliment a phone as the hotspot.

          • That is the trick though, isn’t it. How useful do they actually make it? Will it run Android and be a phone? Will it run Linux and actually let you do stuff. Will it let me update my spreadsheets and presentations on the fly, and sync them via Dropbox/GoogleDrive/One Drive?
            If it ticks all these boxes, and better than say a KEYone, it’ll be awesome. At $350, it definitely is at the right price point 🙂

          • Well. It runs both OS so in theory does both. Not convinced it will sell very well, but could find many fans.

          • Cult following could easily happen. 10 years ago I would already have paid for one. Now I am not as patient.

          • Just realised something in that it is not a Psion. Maybe the Android or Linux OS’s will make it feel like any other device and not a true organiser/companion?

  3. This would basically replace my phone and Yoga Book I suppose. It’s a communication device, I don’t use my phone as a phone much. My Yoga Book replaces my laptop in a lot of ways, but basically it’s great for watching movies and stuff. But this, could be a nice combination of both, yet portable. At school I actually connect my Yoga Book to a digital whiteboard, if this could do that I’d be set! (I wonder if they could make the keyboard backlit, I’d be extra set!)

  4. I don’t use a Bluetooth earpiece but this plus an ear piece would be awesome for travelling – it would do 90% of what you need.

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