In its latest incarnation, it's a paperback-esque 'digital journal' running good old Windows 6 CE. Each Tegra-powered Courier will have dedicated cloud storage for images, documents, calendar items and contacts. Engadget reckons it will also come with handwriting recognition, built-in camera and microphone jack, and form the centrepiece of a Microsoft ebook reader ecosystem when it launches in the autumn.
I'm not entirely convinced by that last info-nugget. At a meeting in Redmond last year, Microsoft's Chief Research Officer, Craig Mundie, and gadget supremo Robbie Bach pointed to rapidly improving netbooks as potential spoilers for ebooks and said that Microsoft would 'hesitate' to launch a reader if it couldn't scale up to a major business. With the iPad arriving next month, it looks like Microsoft might have hesitated just a shade too long.