Ionics Plug Computer 3.0 (preview)
The first unit based on Marvell's Sheevaplug always-on microserver platform, the Plug Computer 3.0 looks bulky, but impressive.
- Intriguing form factor and concept
- Little bit bulky
An intriguing concept, the Ionics Plug Computer 3.0 is a worthy first model based on Marvell’s Sheevaplug always-on microserver platform. Of course, it remains to be seen whether the always-on, networkable PC that plugs in to the power socket is a goer.
A networkable computer built into a standard electrical outlet plug - we take a look at the Plug Computer 3.0. It's an intriguing idea - and not far-fetched given we have full computers in our pockets (we call them cell phones). Marvell introduced at CES 2010 its third-generation Sheevaplug, which is the basis for the Plug Computer 3.0. We got our hands on the first unit from one of Marvell's six contract manufacturing partners.
The Ionics Plug Computer 3.0 we saw was a bit bulky and boxy for an outlet. Plug it in and you won't be able to share that outlet with any other device. Other manufacturers may have different form factors.
But that observation aside, the lightweight Plug Computer 3.0 device appeared intriguing. The unit we saw wasn't plugged in, and wasn't running any software. Inside was a 120GB 1.8-inch SATA hard drive, plus both NAND flash and DDR2 RAM (512MB of each). The NAND flash is for storing the applications that will run on the Plug Computer.
The Plug Computer 3.0 runs Marvell's 2GHz Armada 300 processor; Marvell's design allows for up to 2GB of flash and 1GB of embedded NAND system memory.
The device communicates through your router to your home network and interfaces with hosted services in the cloud. You don't have to configure it -- it autosenses your network configuration thanks to DLNA certified chipsets (though, the device itself may not be DLNA certified; that depends upon the individual manufacturers). You can access the device via a web browser from a PC or another device, such as a connected TV or cell phone; from there, you can access content on the device, or even install new apps from an appstore.
The Plug Computer 3.0 is always on. Marvell says the power draw, not counting the hard drive, is 3 Watts when fully active; but 99 percent of the time it will be in standby mode, and in that state, it only draws tens of milliwatts.
Other specs of the Plug Computer 3.0: USB 2.0 port and gigabit ethernet port. The Ionics Plug Computer 3.0 was running Linux (Ubuntu Jaunty Jackalope).
Join the newsletter!
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Apple iPhone X
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
cloudandco Smart Cane
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-77EZ1000U
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
Toys for Boys
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Bose SoundLink Micro
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Google Daydream View VR Headset
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Xbox One X
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 10 Pro Review: A solid winter flagship that cribs from the best
- 2 Google Pixel 2 review: not quite 'pixel perfect' but damn close
- 3 Huawei Nova 2i review: Flagship features get smuggled into the mid-tier
- 4 Moto X4 review: This is what a world without MotoMods looks like
- 5 Giabyte Aorus X9 Gaming Laptop review: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Optimizely expands its enterprise-focused offerings
- Microsoft shows the power of its Pen with a new Whiteboard app and other upgrades
- Microsoft redesigns OneNote UI to make it more universally accessible
- Drupal fixes critical access bypass vulnerability
- Microsoft will cut services to standalone Office users so they’ll subscribe to Office 365
PCW Evaluation Team
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.
- Huawei Mate 10 Pro review
- Get set for Amazon Australia Black Friday launch
- Destiny 2 PC review
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- TPFull Stack DeveloperNSW
- FTIntegration Developer (Mulesoft)Other
- CCIntel Active Directory SpecialistNSW
- FTSenior NodeJS DeveloperQLD
- TPContracting Specialist - Procurement AssociateNSW
- FTRegional Market Manager - Wide Bay RegionQLD
- CCRelease ManagerACT
- FTJava DeveloperOther
- TPSCRUM MasterVIC
- FTSoftware DeveloperOther
- CCWeb Applications Project ManagerQLD
- FTSAP CRM FunctionalistOther
- CCSecurity AnalystQLD
- FTNetwork Security EngineerOther
- CCSenior Web DeveloperNSW
- FTManager, PortfolioOther
- FTSolutions Architect - Digital/WealthOther
- FTMarketing Operations ManagerNSW
- FTAgile CoachOther
- FTHadoop DeveloperACT
- CCRPA DeveloperVIC
- FTTechnical/ Architecture Java LeadVIC
- FTService Desk CoordinatorVIC
- FTTechnical Business AnalystOther
- FTProgram Manager - Technology & EngineeringOther