Hands–on with the Wistron pBook smartbook

Smartbooks got hardcore gadget fans salivating last week at the computer love–in that is Computex. The new machines, which are being billed as a cross

The idea is simple – smartbooks pack in Qualcomm's Snapdragon chip, already seen in the sleek and sexy Toshiba TG01, and won't come with Windows XP or Linux. Rather they tote with a mobile style OS, aimed right at those after constant web access and massive battery life.

Qualcomm reckons there's a massive demand for machines that offer netbook style but with a cheaper price point and more smartphone functions. We're not talking Office apps and iTunes access here – this is all about better ways of emailing, social networking and staying in touch on an easy to use device.

The pBook is one of the first, and the only one I've been allowed to have a play with here at Qualcomm's San Diego HQ. It looks sleek, think a heftier Sony Vaio P series, but whether people really need a gadget that's bigger than their blower but does the same thing remains to be seen.

Read our 5 things you need to know about smartbooks