Zodiac primed for preorders

Tapwave makes its new handheld available for preorder, shows off new device at the DEMOmobile conference.

Founded in May 2001, "mobile entertainment gear" startup Tapwave announced recently that its handheld console, the Zodiac, is available for preorder at its Web site.

Tapwave demonstrated the Zodiac's capabilities at the three-day DEMOmobile conference, held September 17-19 in La Jolla, California.

DEMOmobile showcases various upcoming technologies likely to impact the marketplace and displays a selected group of mobile technologies to executives, analysts, venture capitalists, product developers, and journalists.

Available in late October, the Zodiac is a multifunction device that offers games, PDA functionality, an MP3 player, and photo and video viewer.

Games scheduled to be available at launch include Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4, Doom II, and Midway's Spy Hunter. In the months following, Zodiac is scheduled to have Neverwinter Nights, various Sega Genesis titles, and a Duke Nukem mobile game available.

Zodiac comes bundled with two games: Stuntcar Extreme by Vasara Games and AcidSolitaire by Red Mercury.

Two models of the Zodiac are available for preorder: The Zodiac 1 has 32MB of internal RAM and is priced at $299, while the Zodiac 2 has 128MB of internal RAM and is priced at $399. Compatible with SD flash cards and offering IrDA and Bluetooth multiplayer gaming, Zodiac runs an enhanced version of the Palm OS 5.2T and is therefore compatible with 19,000 existing applications, according to Tapwave.

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