What is a Webtop? Or: is Modu back in a bigger size?


I never liked Modu's jackets concept nor the tiny phone with the look of the 70's.

To me, one strong, sexy looking smartphone, that will gather all of my stuff without having to carry other things around seems much better than having a bag full of jackets and having to spend time switching between them.

But Modu is history now, and the one of the reasons is Android – an OS so powerful it can manage everything in parallel without having to use jackets.

Yesterday I learned a new term called: Webtop.

What is a webtop you ask? Here's something from EdutechWiki:

A webtop is a kind of rich internet application that runs in a web browser and that integrates various web-based applications, typically lots of different kinds of information feeds (via RSS), some virtual office applications, some social software such as Flickr or YouTube. You may add other RSS feeds and most webtops also let you add web widget code.


Oh, so a webtop is like Chrome OS! Is that it? An OS like environment which is all about internet browsing, and cloud based services - right?

Not exactly;

Motorola recently released a new Android SuperPhone called Atrix 4G. The SuperPhone is unique in the sense that it has some docking stations that changes the experience into a desktop-like environment presented on a wide screen.

Specifically when you connect the Motorola Atrix to a laptop dock or an HD Media Dock – the phone changes into an advanced mode, fully customized by Motorola, with a dual view: one presenting the phone (Android classic look) but hosted inside a MacOS like shell, with some shortcuts in the bottom and a large windows open for browsing and other day to day tasks such as emails, folders, and facebook.


Motorola seems to take their own course on this one as the Atrix is not related to ChromeOS in any way, although it's Android based. In fact, the browser itself is based on… FireFox… something which I'm sure could piss off someone in Google…

Here's a short video preview of the Motorola Atrix 4G and the "jackets" style docking stations that turns it into a webtop:

So now we know what a webtop is, and after seeing it in real demo it doesn't look bad. Is that the return of the Modu, only in different size? Can we call those docking stations or laptop dock – jackets? Will people actually carry a webtop with them when they can have a tablet instead?

I think that like any new technology which doesn't come from Apple, Atrix will probably fail to become trendy, but in two years from now, we may not have a real laptop anymore as everything will be stored and processed by our smartphones…

Terms you may have looked for:

What is a Webtop? Android Webtop, Motorola Atrix 4G, Android vs.ChromeOS, Webtop mobile

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android spy said…
very smart idea, too good to see the versatility
good technology, but seems expensive
Rich, Leeds said…
Looks a genuinely useful innovation. Will be interesting to see if it takes off.