Commodore, the company that helped kick-start the personal computer revolution in the 80s, is back with a cutting-edge portable media centre that incorporates satellite navigation.
Codenamed, with refreshing simplicity, 'The Navigator Combo', Commodore's new handheld device incorporates a 30GB hard drive (preloaded with maps), a large 3.6in touch-screen display and an integrated GPS receiver. And when it's not telling you where to go, it's entertaining you - thanks to built-in speakers and support for music in MP3 and WMA format (including tracks from rental services like Napster and Virgin Digital, or those downloaded from the new Commodore Music Store).
The Windows CE-based device also plays video in MPEG-4 and DivX formats, which can be downloaded from the internet and transferred from your PC via USB 2.0, or stored on SD memory cards.
It's all cutting-edge stuff, although its good to see the newAmerican owners of the Commodore brand (Yeahronimo Media Ventures) have plumped for chunky retro styling. After all, Commodore was one of the biggest names in tech in the 80s – if you weren't manically mining on a Sinclair Spectrum, you were attacking mutant camels on the Commodore 64. But the powerful Amiga computer that followed wasn't good enough to save the company, which soon joined Apricot, Acorn, Dragon, MSX and Sinclair in the great eBay in the sky.
Well, now Commodore is back – and not resting on its laurels (unlike the previous incarnation of the brand that simply sold rebadged PCs and TV joysticks with C64 games built in). You can be the first to get hands on with the Combo – and more exciting devices from the company – at our Best of Stuff exhibition in London, Nov 4-6. See you there…