Ockel is not a brand you hear of often; the Sirius A isn’t Ockel’s first product – neither is it its first crowd-funding campaign, but it is perhaps a product that will make you curious.
From a straight up design point of view – this does not look very pleasant to hold in hand. The body features sharp edges and has an odd shape that accommodates for its massive ports rather than your hand. This is, however, on purpose.
The Sirius A is a Mini-PC, and while it does have a 6-inch 1080p display – it is not meant to be used as a phone. These phone-sized PC’s are called Mini-PCs, and they serve a unique purpose – to give you a portable computer that you can use at a “terminal.”
The point is simple. You can connect this thing to a monitor, keyboard, and mouse – all of the peripherals and freedom a desktop offers – and still have the portability of a laptop. You could say this is a tiny desktop – you still need a desk to actually use it.
The Sirius A isn’t Ockel’s first product; Ockel already makes four different Mini-PCs – some new, some old. Sirius A, however, is unique, in that it has a display.
The 6-inch FHD display is powered by an Intel Atom x7-8750 quad core processor clocked at 1.6 Ghz. Intel’s Atom processors aren’t exactly known for performance – but they are Intel’s most energy efficient processors with next to nothing in terms of heat output.
Sirius A also comes with 4 GB of LPDDR3 1600 Mhz RAM and 64 GB of eMMC storage. It also supports up to 2 TB of expandable storage via the inbuilt micro-SDXC card slot.
Clearly, it is a PC that is capable of running full Windows 10 – so it comes running Windows 10 Home 64-bit as well. This is where the Intel Atom processor comes in handy; because the device is running an x86 chip, Windows 10 Home on this Mini-PC is capable of running any Windows application.
As it is evident from the images – the Sirius A has a lot of ports. Starting from the left – we have a DisplayPort, an HDMI port, followed by USB-Type C, RJ45 Ethernet, two USB-A 3.0, a micro SD slot, and a 12V/3A power plug.
As for inputs, that’s where things get interesting; you can obviously connect any mouse or keyboard via the USB ports – but you don’t have to.
Ockel says it has been working directly with Microsoft to integrate a few exclusive software features. “Switch Mode” being one of them, lets you use the display on the device as an input device – as soon as you connect a display with the Sirius A, it can switch to this mode and let you use it as a keyboard or touchpad.
It certainly is a clever idea; if you want you can use the device directly as well – it has a 6-inch display after all.
Funding and Release
Crowdfunding can be risky; lately, companies have been setting expectations and making promises, without giving their backers any results. Ockel, however, has successfully delivered on their crowdfunded projects four times already – a fifth time shouldn’t be any different.
Ockel started an Indiegogo campaign for Sirius A about a week ago and managed to hit its $100,000 goal in 2 days. At the time of writing this, it sits at $251,091 with 474 backers and still 23 days to go until the campaign ends.
Ockel expects to start shipping Sirius A by May of 2017, at the price of $699 and in three colors – Moon Silver, Meteor Grey, and Venus Gold.