A  Finnish company has come up with what it says is the world’s smallest general-purpose computer that will revolutionize the way people use computers.

Solu, based in Finland, is aiming to take on giants of the industry like Apple and Microsoft, and says the small device has a revolutionary operating system, an intuitive user interface and a unique subscription model and is designed specifically for the era of cloud computing.

The pocket-sized computer can be used as a stand-alone portable device or connected to a screen and keyboard at which point the handheld device is used as a controller.

Its unusual design – encased in wood – makes it stand out and contains a powerful 2.3GHz processor, battery and wi-fi capability.

In size the touchscreen Solu device is closer to a mobile phone than a traditional PC at around 10cm squared, however its makers say it packs a technological punch.

“The hardware that’s on the devices is high end. I mean we’re talking high resolution screen, we’re talking battery, we’re talking a pretty good CPU, GPU. Premium material is made out of wood so the device price itself if you compare the price of an iPhone is actually pretty low, but the reason why people are so excited about this is that it is really the first no hassle sharing social collaborative computer out there. So in the SOLU environment you no longer have to install applications, you no longer have to worry about hard drive space, you don’t have to worry about back-ups, it takes care of everything,” said Kristoffer Lawson, Solu’s CEO.

According to the company’s website, Solu’s operating system can trade local file systems to a large multi-GB cache of the Solu cloud, thereby removing the need for maintenance, backups and installations.

All data is encrypted and kept in protected locations to ensure privacy.

Solu is also designed to work offline. Any changes made offline are synced as soon as the device goes online. 

“The things that are less important or less frequently used it can start pushing them off the local device and just keep them in the cloud storage and then it can pull from the cloud again whenever you need that content and it does this completely transparently, you don’t even think about it.” Lawson explained.

Solu’s interface is also unusual and looks nothing like any computer you may have used before. Collaboration spaces are presented as a series of bubble-like nodes. 

The idea is to say goodbye to the standard personal computer set-up and base everything on users working together in an internet connected environment without traditional windows or menu bars.

“Each one of these spaces is a separate environment where the team collaborates together, we work together and we share in this kind of space….So it creates out new project there. Now of course  it only has me but then if I want to add new users to that then I can tap long and then I can maybe…maybe I want to add Mike to that project, all right.” 

The product usage is based on a subscription model which offers unlimited access to apps for a monthly fee.

This means that for the first time ever, developers will get monthly revenue based on app usage.

It has a USB port which allows it to connect to devices like the latest MacBook.

Solu has initially launched on Kickstarter at a price of 349 euros. The company aims to supply the devices direct to consumers from spring 2016.

“We now have several months to go still and to polish the operating system to get more of the applications together, get everything ready for the final deliveries,” said Lawson

It has a USB port which allows it to connect to devices like the latest MacBook.

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