ENERGY EFFICIENCY IS CATCHING ON WITH THE PC INDUSTRY

I can, like, so totally do that, Dave. Oh, it's not called the  CherryHal? Image: CherryPal.

    Meet CherryPal, the world’s most efficient and affordable desktop PC

    Much like current trends in the automotive world, the computer industry is forging forward in its efforts to manufacture value-for-money mainstream products that attract eco-conscious consumers while also helping the industry to be seen as more proactively green. Bearing that in mind, meet the new CherryPal C100 desktop PC.

    More specifically, California-based CherryPal Inc., has this week turned the green spotlight onto its CherryPal C100 cloud computer, which it describes as “the most energy efficient and affordable desktop computer” money can buy.

    And not much money, at that. For a mere $249 USD, prospective buyers can secure a completely new style of computer that comes without any moving parts, contains 80 percent fewer components than other PCs, is highly secure, and only requires a mere two watts of power consumption.

    “Today’s typical PC is based on a computing model created 25 years ago, before the Internet, web browsers and global warming,” outlined CherryPal CEO Max Seybold regarding the CherryPal cloud PC, which the company also stresses comes without hidden costs. “We have developed a new computing model that makes CherryPal the easiest to use, greenest, most affordable computer available today.”

    Taking a closer look at the CherryPal’s attributes, the little desktop box vastly undercuts the power demands of an average desktop computer by only needing a measly two watts of power compared to the 114 watts usually consumed. This equates to a massive 98 percent decrease in operational energy consumption.

    Further to that, CherryPal believes its desktop PC will be a viable device for more than a decade thanks to its drastic cutback on moving parts, which also means the computer needs only a fraction of the resources required in conventional PC manufacturing.

    In terms of longevity via user interfacing, CherryPal claims its C100 is “dead simple to set up” and boots ready-for-use in just 20 seconds. Users need to input a username and password to access the CherryPalClould, which then gives them “an incredibly easy, intuitive interface.” The C100 also has no exposed operating system — which helps keep retail costs down — and manages all applications and functions through a Firefox-based browser.

    Further to that, CherryPal carries out all related operating system and application upgrades/installations, which means no outside maintenance is required. The manufacturer also places great onus on the lack of moving parts playing a significant role in the C100 being able to avoid hardware failures.

    “CherryPal has removed the hassle from personal computing by moving most of the software and data that traditionally sits on the desktop to the Internet,” reveals CherryPal Inc. in its official release. “Instead of accessing programs and data from your desktop computer, the majority of information is processed and stored on the web in a highly secure environment called the CherryPalCloud, which is automatically accessed at boot-up.”

    By using the CherryPalCloud environment, users should be able to dodge many of the potential headaches that are typically associated with traditional personal computers; these include application downloads, software upgrades and crashing operating systems, all of which are avoided because the system is always maintained by CherryPal administrators.

    Also, utilisation of the online cloud environment provides improved user protection as computer hardware is no longer exposed to attacks from malicious viruses and hackers, which is a feature further bolstered by the company’s industry-exclusive and patent-pending hardware and software encryption.

    Cloud interaction should also be handy for cutting down lag times and even promoting faster operation speeds as “the majority of cumbersome software applications” are also stored by CherryPalCloud. Of course, ‘look what we can do’ hyperbole aside, the real proof of CherryPal’s C100 pudding lies firmly in whether it can attract consumers based on its core specifications.

    Placing itself as the first computer since Apple Inc. to use a Power Architecture-based processor in a PC, CherryPal is looking to the Freescale MPC5121e mobileGT chip for its muscle, which allows for an integrated graphics solution and audio processing while only requiring 400MHz of power.

    Other core elements include 256MB of DDR2 RAM, a 4GB NAND Flash-based SSD, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g, two USB ports, 10/100 Ethernet access, and a VGA DB-15 display-out jack. The C100 weighs in at a mere 10 ounces (0.3kg or 0.625lbs) and measures 1.3” x 5.8” x 4.2”.

    From a software standpoint, the C100 delivers a highly-customised operating system built from the open-source Debian/GNU Linux, with a Web browser based on Mozilla’s popular and plug-in friendly Firefox software. Other CherryPal-compatible applications include OpenOffice, Apple iTunes, a versatile CherryPal-branded media player, and a CherryPal-branded instant messenger that supports all common IM programs. Cloud storage for further software is presently set at 50GBs, although CherryPal plans to expand that limit in the future.

    The CherryPal C100 is expected to begin shipping at the close of July. The little desktop PC (that can?) is already open for pre-orders in the United States via the CherryPal official Web site.

    by Stevie Smith – Jul 22 2008, 13:00

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