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article imageOckel's 'desktop PC in a tablet' raises $100k in a day

By James Walker     Oct 14, 2016 in Technology
A device claiming to be the world's most versatile mini PC is raking in thousands from its crowdfunding campaign. The Ockel Sirius A blends a tablet form factor with desktop PC functionality, giving you a full Windows experience in a mobile device.
The Ockel Sirius A counterintuitively follows the Sirius B, another successful mini PC. Ockel focuses on creating compact PCs that you can take with you anywhere you go. The Sirius A raises the stakes though, adding a touchscreen so you can use your desktop as a tablet when there's no monitor or mouse available.
The Sirius A launched on Indiegogo on October 5. The company was aiming to raise $100,000 dollars by early November to enable it to manufacture the device. However, just one day into the campaign Ockel had already achieved its funding goal. It has now accumulated a total in excess of $240,000, contributed by more than 450 backers.
Ockel Sirius A
Ockel Sirius A
Ockel
The Sirius A is proving so popular because of its unique form factor. You've heard of phablets, tablets and desktop PCs. All three of these device families overlap in some way. Each has its advantages and limitations. The larger devices offering greater productivity while the smaller ones focus on the ability to use them wherever you are. Ockel decided to break down the barriers between the categories, blending elements of all three into one device.
The result is the Sirius A. It's a 6-inch touchscreen phablet with a unique trapezium design. The phablet form factor means it's small enough to put in your pocket, no wider or taller than many plus-sized phones. However, the Sirius A's hardware and operating system, the full version of Windows 10 Home, make it clear the device is primarily designed to be used as a tablet, not a phone.
Ockel Sirius A
Ockel Sirius A
Ockel
The Sirius A's identity is further complicated by the purpose of the trapezium design. On the base of the phablet-come-tablet, you'll find a selection of full-size ports usually reserved for desktop PCs. There's two USB 3.0 ports, an Ethernet jack and proper HDMI and DisplayPort outputs.
Ockel wants the Sirius A to be a single device that caters for all your computing needs. You can use it as your phone and tablet when commuting or relaxing. When at work, you simply connect your monitor, networking cable and mouse and you have a full Windows PC for the rest of the day.
The hardware inside the Sirius A is capable of handling everyday computing tasks without raising an issue, comprising an Intel Atom x7 processor, 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. The processor is comparably powerful, although this does incur an unfortunate side effect. The battery life of the device is just three hours so you won't be using the Sirius A in tablet mode for long periods.
Ockel Sirius A
Ockel Sirius A
Ockel
When used as a desktop PC, the Sirius A will automatically switch to being an input device, displaying a keyboard and touchpad in the event you don’t have any peripherals available. This mode has been developed in special direct partnership with Microsoft so it's fully integrated into Windows.
Few companies manage to find a form factor as innovative as Ockel has with the Sirius A. The width of the PC means it won't be for everyone but the success of Ockel's funding campaign already indicates the demand for this kind of device. For those who support Windows 10 and want something truly capable of being a tablet and a desktop, there is little to rival the Sirius A.
Ockel Sirius A
Ockel Sirius A
Ockel
"We have created a device with a unique form factor and new functionality and have been able to include an incredible amount of connection options, without handing in on portability," said Tim Haaksma, founder and owner of Ockel. "The Ockel Sirius A is extremely versatile. It's a complete desktop PC, but can also be used as a mediaplayer, gaming device or remote control for smart home devices. The possibilities are endless."
The Sirius A campaign will remain live on Indiegogo for another month. With 240 percent of the company's funding goal already achieved, Ockel is now set up to begin production of the first Sirius A units. The company expects initial shipments to customers to begin in May 2017 priced at $699. The cost may sound high initially but is considerably less than buying a phone, tablet and desktop PC individually, potentially making the Sirius A attractive to buyers ranging from general consumers to enterprise IT managers. Pre-orders made during the campaign will cost only $549, an attractive discount that makes the Sirius A even better value.
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