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Startup Unveils USB Dual Core PC Running Android

A startup called FXI has managed to bring a Samsung Exynos 4210 dual core chipset clocked at 1.2GHz with an ARM Mali-400 MP quad core GPU, Wi-Fi, 1GB RAM, Bluetooth, a microSD card slot and an HDMI jack into a USB flash drive sized PC called Cotton Candy.

That is essentially some of the hardware found in the Samsung Galaxy S II without the onboard storage or the capacitive touchscreen (and battery).

When plugged into a PC or Mac via a USB port (or even a tablet or smartphone we reckon), it transforms into a fully fledged computer that runs on Android 2.3 Gingerbread but without Android Marketplace access.

Cotton Candy can be controlled via a separate window on the host operating system like in a virtualised environment.

The device has yet to be released or priced, although Joanna Stern (opens in new tab) from the Verge says that it will cost well under $200 and will come in the second half of 2012.

The issue here is that by the time it is released, FXI may find itself facing an uphill struggle with many rivals launching an alternative Apple TV-like device that would be just as versatile but also cheaper and possibly with Ice Cream Sandwich support.

Désiré Athow

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.