Dell Wyse Project Ophelia is an Ice Cream Sandwich dongle than only needs a monitor

January 8, 2013
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    Smartphones and tablets are not the only Android products we’re interested in checking out at CES 2013, and today we’re going to show you a different kind of Android-powered device, the Dell Wyse Project Ophelia.

    For some reason, Dell is ready to give Android another try, but not by reviving its mobile business. Instead, the company is pitching to consumers and companies an Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich dongle that would help them turn any TV or display into a PC that will get them fast access to the personal contents of the cloud. That’s what Project Ophelia is.

    There already are plenty of similar projects and/or dongles that will help you enjoy Android on a bigger display, but not all of them are backed up by Dell’s Wyse Cloud Client Manager.

    Project Ophelia is described both as an entertainment and a work-related device, although from the press release it looks like Dell seems to have quite a difficult time explaining why anyone would need such a device on top of their smartphone, tablet and/or computer, which can all be used for similar purposes. Because in most day-to-day situations, one would have access to at least one of these three devices, making Project Ophelia a less likelier computing choice.

    Not to mention that anyone who’s interested in a cloud-based computing experience can always go for a Chrome device instead. But hey, we’re not here to judge Project Ophelia, so let’s see what it can do, according to the press release:

    • Enables instant and secure access to your personal cloud, entertainment, work content and applications wherever there is an available capable display (using a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse), including a wide variety of Dell flat-panel displays.
    • Integrated Wi-Fi and Bluetooth facilitates access and communication.
    • Built on the Android 4 OS to support Web browsing, social networking, media playback and Android Apps with a possibility to extend to other services.
    • Securely connects to Windows desktops and applications running on back-end systems from all leading infrastructure providers including Citrix, Microsoft and VMware.
    • Flexibly powered zero-battery device gets power from the attached display monitor via its MHL interface to the monitor’s MHL port, or separately via its own USB interface. No batteries to charge or change.
    • Remembers settings for each individual to enhance usability.
    • Compatible with many existing Dell Wyse thin clients and software products.

    Project Ophelia is set to launch in the first half of the year and will be available from Dell Cloud Client Computing from a yet-to-be-disclosed price.

    Show Press Release

    Ultra-Compact Dell Cloud Connection Device Enables Access to Personal and Professional Content From Any Capable Display

    LAS VEGAS, Jan. 8, 2013 – Dell today unveiled a solution that extends the value of cloud client computing to the next level, enabling people to manage the increasing convergence of their work lives and personal lives by using a compact, portable device to access not only secured professional assets, but also personal content via the cloud. The ultra-compact multimedia-capable device, called Dell Wyse “Project Ophelia,” is slightly larger than a USB memory stick and enables users to convert any capable TV or monitor into a functioning interactive personal display device without using a computer, tablet or smartphone.
    Today, people are increasingly looking to take and securely access their personal and professional content wherever they go. Despite rapid advances in mobile technology, however, they still face challenges when it comes to securely accessing desired information when they are away from the office. There is no easy way, for example, to access photos, music or video from a personal cloud or entertainment subscription when away from a PC, smartphone or tablet. Equally, professionals find it difficult to securely access and share work applications, presentations and content if they are away from their usual devices, or worse, if their mobile devices are misplaced or fail during travel. It is also difficult for IT organizations to enable and manage access to enterprise apps and content for highly mobile users, especially those who may be without their preferred laptop, tablet or smartphone.

    Built on Dell Wyse software technology already used on millions of devices, Project Ophelia transforms ordinary displays into a window to entertainment, communications and a person’s own personal cloud. The device also allows business users to instantly turn a display into a flexible, securely managed, communications-enabled thin client for work, demos or presentations. These capabilities are packed into a device barely larger than a USB stick that is self-powered through a monitor and easily fits inside your pocket.
    The product addresses a variety of uses being fueled by the growing need to access cloud-based apps and resources at any time, or whenever a larger screen high definition digital display provides a superb user experience. Examples include:
    - Consumers who desire in-the-moment access to cloud-based games or content but do not have their laptop or tablet in their possession;
    - On-line gamers wishing to take advantage of a much larger display for an improved interactive experience;
    - Highly mobile professionals who may not have a large display capable device with them; and
    - Cloud access providers wishing to provide an attractively priced device included with carrier
    internet/wireless services

    Key benefits of Project Ophelia:
    - Enables instant and secure access to your personal cloud, entertainment, work content and applications wherever there is an available capable display (using a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse), including a wide variety of Dell flat-panel displays.
    - Integrated Wi-Fi and Bluetooth facilitates access and communication.
    - Built on the Android 4 OS to support Web browsing, social networking, media playback and Android Apps
    with a possibility to extend to other services.
    - Securely connects to Windows desktops and applications running on back-end systems from all leading
    infrastructure providers including Citrix, Microsoft and VMware.
    - Flexibly powered zero-battery device gets power from the attached display monitor via its MHL interface
    to the monitor’s MHL port, or separately via its own USB interface. No batteries to charge or change.
    - Remembers settings for each individual to enhance usability.
    - Compatible with many existing Dell Wyse thin clients and software products.
    
    - Managed by Dell Wyse Cloud Client Manager software-as-a-service (SaaS) which can ensure the device is being used by the appropriate person with the right permissions and access to apps and content based on role, department, and location.
    obile devices have small screens, tablets and PCs aren’t always convenient to haul around, and all these devices require batteries that can run down. ‘Project Ophelia’ turns capable TVs and monitors into personal and reliable Wi-Fi enabled work or
    entertainment stations – all managed easily by IT via Dell Wyse Cloud Client Manager.”

    Availability:
    Project Ophelia will be available in the first half of 2013 from Dell Cloud Client Computing.

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    • Derrick Montrose

      Sounds like a competively placed product. About double the RAM of the Z2C, and 4 times the onboard storage of any of the current devices, barring a Raspberry Pi (assuming the largest supported SD card has been installed). Depending on the pricing, they might actually be the best deal in the Micro PC market.

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