Live from Computex 2008 in Taipei, your favorite demo guy gets his hands on the real deal.
I’ve never said that being a demo guy doesn’t have its perks. And today I’ve got my privileged hands on a brand spanking new Asus Centrino 2 (“Montevina” for us nerds) system, as I blog away under the sexy glow of my new mobile powerhouse. Mmmmmmmm…..Asus M51VA with Penryn (drool); I can feel the high-K love quadrupling my words per minute as we speak. Well, not really. But I do want to finish up my post so I can get back to playing, er…testing, World of Warcraft over the live Fitel WiMAX network here in Taipei. That’s right. You heard me correctly. Montevina, WiMAX; live in Taipei. Kind of strange to say it all in one mouthful, but it’s finally here. When WiMAX ships with Centrino 2 later this year, no add on card required, the Echo Peak mini-card hidden under the hood (like the one inside this Asus) promises the “always on” connection we’ve been lusting for. And now my Fitel WiMAX connection serves up a steady stream of bits while I leisurely stroll with it around the TICC to put it through the paces. How’s the streaming video, you ask? Kobe looked pretty good scoring 39 to put the Lakers in the NBA finals from my Slingbox back in the States (place/time-shifting, oh how I love thee). Skype rings clear as a bell, except maybe for the drowning concert of scooter horns that screech from the busy Taipei traffic. But online gaming over a live carrier network has long been my holy grail around WiMAX. Here from my outside park bench, after downloading my Warcraft client, I’m able log into the game world to slay all manner of goblins and over sized gerbils. It’s not the raw speed I’m looking for in this scenario, but the responsiveness, so my game character isn’t cut to ribbons by a rabid squirrel while he scratches his head awaiting the next delivery of network packets to tell him to run the hell out of there (cough 3G cough). The best part of it all? It feels like WiFi, but I’m outside, and I can’t even SEE a Starbucks from where I’m at. Freedom!!! Only thing I have to worry about is the rain. Oh Montevina, you crafty minx. You broke our hearts with the launch delay, but with all the new Centrino 2 platforms to be shown this week at Computex, it won’t be long before we kiss and make up with the promise of what will be the highest performing and best connected Centrino yet. More to come on Fitel’s WiMAX network and the other Intel Centrino 2 models here at Computex. But for now, please excuse me. It’s WoW time.