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PalmOne Tungsten C

I've saved the fastest WiFi PDA tested for last. Like the HP H2210 and ASUS A716, PalmOne's Tungsten C also uses a 400MHz Intel PXA255 processor. But instead of using the PocketPC OS, it runs the Palm OS 5.2.1 Operating System.

In Figure 6 you can see the light-colored 11b radio module, but component markings have been successfully obscured. However, the view of the other side of the Tungsten C's board in Figure 7 clearly shows that the module is sourced from ASUS, but unfortunately, little else.

PalmOne Tungsten C - component side

Figure 6: PalmOne Tungsten C - component side

PalmOne Tungsten C - circuit side

Figure 7: PalmOne Tungsten C - circuit side

No matter what the construction details are, the Tungsten C clearly outperformed all other products in my test group. Since IXIA doesn't have a Chariot endpoint for the Palm OS, I had to switch to using FTP as the means to measure the Tungsten C's wireless transfer performance.

So as to make as much of an apples-to-apples comparison as possible, I also ran FTP tests using the same setup for the other products tested. The results are summarized in Table 2.

Product FTP Transfer rate
(as recorded to 3CDaemon log)
Best-case Chariot Throughput
PalmOne Tungsten C
333 kBytes/sec (2.7Mbps)
N / A
ASUS A716
126 kBytes/sec (1.0Mbps)
4.1 Mbps
Dell Axim X3 / SanDisk SD WiFi
49 kBytes/sec (0.4Mbps)
1.1 Mbps
HP H2210/ SanDisk SD WiFi
32 kBytes/sec (0.3Mbps)
0.4 Mbps
Table 2: Wireless FTP Transfer Rates

The FTP speeds are lower than those obtained via the Chariot runs, but the relative speeds are consistent.

NoteTesting Notes:
- Pocket PC devices used Pocket IE as the FTP client
- Palm OS device used VFSTP as the FTP client
- FTP server was 3CDaemon Version 2.0 Revision 10
- NETGEAR ME102 used as AP
- Transfer done with > 5,000,000 Byte zip file.

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