Trolltech/Sharp Partner on Zaurus

Trolltech and
Sharp have
a really spiffy-looking
Linux palmtop, named "Zaurus".
The device itself features
a sliding (retractable) keyboard, a color
display, a CF expansion slot (for memory or peripherals), an
SD expansion slot (for secure memory storage or other peripherals),
an IR port, a USB connector and a headset port.
On the software side, the Zaurus uses
Embedix Linux;
Trolltech's Qt/Embedded, Qt/Palmtop and Qt AWT GUI technologies;
Insignia Solution's
Jeode PDA Edition;
and Opera Software's embedded web browser.
Sharp is accepting pre-orders from the developer community for the
SL-5000D developer unit (register
With the continuing additions to kdenox, this might just be
a great platform for KOffice/embedded.

Dot Categories: 


by reihal (not verified)

I want to browse downloaded websites (or parts of sites) offline on my PDA, if I buy one.
Reading mail and newsgroups offline would be nice too.
But it's only a deam, I guess, it will never happen.

by Claes (not verified)

If this thing can run wwwoffle, it should be possible.

by Carbon (not verified)

Sitescooper is cool too, it's one of my favorite small but ultra-handy perl apps.

And of course, wget is always handy! :-)

by Claes (not verified)

This thing looks very nice! But as always with small devices, one problem: there are not enough keys for the extra characters in the swedish (and I guess many others) alphabet. I will never buy a PDA with keyboard unless it has got a reasonable keyboard layout.

by Rob Kaper (not verified)

When will this beauty be in stores? Where do I sign up for a development model? What's the price tag? I want one for Christmas!

by Thomas (not verified)

If I got it right, Sharp sells the SL5000 with a preinstalled Lineo Embedix Linux and a Java Engine on top of it (in ROM). NO QT/Embedded.

The Trolls just fiddled around with this PDA and figured out how to get their
PDA-Environment to run on this (nice lookin) PDA. That's all...

But me as stupid customer want to buy it with QT/Embedded as preinstalled system....

Am I completely wrong? Did I misunderstood the (little) Sharp-SL5000 information I read on Sharps website?

by Thomas (not verified)

What I mean:

O.k. there's the Qt AWT, so you can do your programming in Java, but it has
native look n' feel of Qt.

The preinstalled apps (like the organizer or the mailer): Are they written in Qt/C++ which is all known to us ...or in Java? Will you be able to still use C++ for development _without_ major modifications to the PDA's OS and Desktop Environment settings?
Am I right, you can choose Konqui for browser (QT/C++)?

Or do you have to get along with Java?
Java seems to work out of the box,
QT/C++ needs what? (a crosscompiler?)

by Frank (not verified)

Qt embedded is already installed (the device was shown at "Systems" fair in Munich in October, with Qt). The web pages seems to be not up to date.
Sharp has recognized the power of QPE and switched over in the last weeks.
Developer releases should be available in November for around 399$, the target for the final devices is march (with a higher price?).
According to there homepage is also involved in application development.

by Martin Jones (not verified)

Actually, this device ships with Qt/Embedded and Qt/Palmtop pre-installed and there is a development kit to develop Qt applications. The Java engine runs on top of Qt/Embedded.

Martin Jones,

by brambi (not verified)

This is indeed a good platform for KOffice. I think that for using KOffice as main Word Processor on the desktop is lacks some major features. Star/Open Office does this job much better. Is there anybody working on a port of Koffice to qpe ?

Hancomoffice is also working on an office suite for Qpe.


by Evan "JabberWok... (not verified)

Wouldn't it make more sense to make a KPE and have some sort of standardized flag that lets apps be aware that they are on a handheld format screen (change the menus and toolbars)?


by svara (not verified)

I travelled to japan about half a year ago and I saw a PDA called "Zaurus" in stores everywhere. Is that the same? Didn't know it was running Linux...

by Janne (not verified)

The japanise Zaurus in the same hardware but with Sharp OS, no Linux there.

by Anonymous Clippy (not verified)

Actually I think its got an SH cpu instead of an ARM proccessor that the US version will have.

by Shawn Gordon (not verified)

Arrived about an hour ago, we are working on porting Kivio mp to it right now. It is a sweet unit, I hope they forget they sent it to me :). It's much nicer than the iPaq and smaller, it's just a touch larger than my Handspring Visor. There are some humorous misspellings in some of the current dialog boxes.


by me (not verified)

Wow, that's gotta be the best part of your job, getting to play with those gadgets! If it only included a cellphone, I'd have ordered mine by now...

But Shawn, to be honest, I think Kivio should be the very last thing to port to a handheld. I haven't done too much diagramming, but i found out that it takes quite a lot of screenspace to create bigger diagrams, since you tend to quickly lose overview.

Don't you think that aethera would be a better idea?

by Shawn Gordon (not verified)

Actually this is the first decent thing I've gotten in.

As far as applications, out of all the things we have, Kivio seems the most appropriate, if not particularly appropriate. We're going to look at Aethera too when we finish the Qt port later this week, but I think it's too fat for this device.

I'm open to suggestions for products that make sense though.


by All_troll_no_tech (not verified)


by Shawn Gordon (not verified)

kapital is too fat and needs KDE - on a palm you just want something lite weight to keep certain information and then sync up with.

by Brad C. (not verified)

how about making it able to sync with Aethera...

that would be sweet
(oh, and i would REALLY like to see a finished Aethera....)

Kivio would be pretty cool, I installed a diagramming
program on my ipaq called First and it wasn't as bad
as you would expect it to be with the limited screen space.

I did order one of these already(developers adddition)
I hope they ship pretty soon!

by Shawn Gordon (not verified)

well I know you here this a lot, but early next week will have the new Aethera with the new UI and plug in architecture with a couple of commercial plug ins to follow a couple weeks later.

by Carbon (not verified)

This is a bit OT, but why in the world did you guys decide to make custom toolbar icons for Aethera, even for standard functions like 'print'? Or, have those been removed?

by Shawn Gordon (not verified)

You think I've got time to check every feature and function when I'm so busy following these talkbacks? :)

Seriously, I'm not sure what the original situation was, or what the current situation is with regard to the icons. I know we made all our own icons because that's just what we do.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Would you please consider an option to make Aethera use KDE's icons? I'd love to see Aethera's look mirror my KDE desktop as *closely* as possible.


by Janne (not verified)

Since you are the first person I know that has the device, could you give us a mini-review :)?

How is the keyboard? Does it have a good feel to it (I guess Psion Revo has spoiled me when it coms to PDA-keyboards). How about the screen? Is it good? How fast is the device? Any slowdowns?

by Shawn Gordon (not verified)

The device is slightly longer than my Visor. Qpe feels like a cross between Palm OS and WinCE, I'm not totally sure I like it yet, I don't care for the handwriting recognition on it at all, but the keyboard is pretty nice. You're going to be using your thumbs to type basically, and there is a enough room on there so it's not a problem.

There is a version of Opera on there, but I can't think of anything more painful than surfing the net on a screen this size, but at least there is a keyboard, trying to type a URL takes about 5 to 10 minutes (seriously, I tried it on a larger test unit some months ago).

The display is very nice and all the applications I brought up were very zippy, I was pleased with the performance. So at this stage I would give it a positive review.

by Mr. Guy (not verified)

What the hell is this site, a forum for free advertising for TrollTech?

by Christian A Str... (not verified)

Troll-detection... *bip bip*

by SVG wanter (not verified)

I wanna plug in a keyboard and monitor and use this like a computer ;-) OK really I just wanna be able to use it for doing presentations instead of lugging a laptop around and using windbloze and [email protected]#$%@#$%#$ING PowerPoint

by Anti-Twit (not verified)

you are a twit sir!

Even if those things were available in hardware (and if they wer the think would be half the size of a laptop by that point) what uhh **APPLICATION** would you use for presentations?

Staroffice -- nope
Hanoffice -- nope
Gobe -- nope
KOffice -- nope

.... nope nope nope

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Hmm... maybe the port for syncing could have an add on for video out? If KOffice could (is being?) ported, and so is HancomOffice, such an idea would be kinda neat.


by My other email ... (not verified)


... use of Qt is optional ;-)

by ljp (not verified)

As soon as I can help it, gutenbrowser is also going to run on it. This thing looks Kool! Never had a pda before- really never had a reason to have one.
C'mon December!! :D