• September 28, 2022

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Do you want a laptop computer you can slip into a jacket pocket? Well, the Pocket Reform is promising to bring back the 1990s days of PDAs.

Described by its makers MNT Research as the “the ultimate sofa computer”, the 7-inch laptop is based on open-source software and will come in a variety of hardware configurations.

The standard configuration will offer an NXP i.MX8M Plus module, which includes a quad-core ARM Cortex A53 processor and 8GB of RAM. Alternatively, you might choose a configuration based on the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4, which also includes a quad-core Cortex-A72 processor and 8GB of RAM.

The Pocket Reform will ship with 128GB of built-in storage, but that can be boosted up to 2TB via the SSD slot. There’s also a MicroSD slot for less expensive storage expansion.

The 7-inch display is Full HD, although it can output at up to 4K resolution via the Micro HDMI port if you want to connect the Pocket Reform to an external screen.

The keyboard has mechanical switches, and will come in U.S., U.K., German and other international layouts.

The software

The Pocket Reform will run on a Debian Linux operating system, although it will support other Linux distros, including Ubuntu, Arch and Void.

The device comes with lots of open-source software pre-installed, including the Thunderbird email client, LibreOffice (an open-source rival to Microsoft Office), and both the Chromium and Firefox web browsers.

It will also allow owners to indulge a little retro gaming to match its retro styling, with a variety of classic console emulators pre-installed on the device.

There’s confirmation of the price or the launch date of the Pocket Reform yet, with potential buyers urged to sign up for updates on the Pocket Reform website.

Retro revival

The Pocket Reform isn’t the only recent device to hark back to the 1990s with PDA-style hardware.

For example, the Astro Slide 5G is largely inspired by the design of the Psion Series 5, with a keyboard that slides out from underneath the screen.

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