One of the ideas for EOMA68 Cards that’s been in the cards (pun intended) for some time is a Pass-through Card. The possibilities for this Card are really exciting, so we decided to add it during the campaign.
For those people who are not familiar with the use of the Motorola Atrix Lapdock for its screen, keyboard, and mouse, here are some examples. However, these all require quite a bit of modding and messing about, and Motorola added DRM into their 2nd revision so that people could no longer create a perfectly good $120 laptop with a really good battery life.
This gave NexDock a free hand in an open market to create a really nice looking product with some awesome illustrated uses, including great videos that clearly illustrate how powerful and flexible these USB-HDMI docking stations really are. Extend your tablet or smartphone with a second screen, keyboard, and mouse, or extend your laptop with a portable second screen, keyboard, and mouse. Maybe even charge up your smartphone at the same time from the bigger battery in the Lapdock.
Now imagine that exact same concept, but in the EOMA68 Laptop Housing… or in a future EOMA68 tablet housing or other design, all of which can be upgraded to real devices by pressing a button, popping out the Pass-through Card and popping in a Computer Card! Wouldn’t that be awesome? People on the arm-netbook mailing list think so too, so we’ve added a Pass-through Card to the pledges. Look to the right and scroll down.
Just as someone pointed out on the mailing list: this would be a great option for people who prefer to wait for a more powerful Computer Card: the Laptop Housing with a Pass-through Card would make it a useful device in its own right that’s worth backing: we can see that it’s a desirable combination from the example of the Atrix Laptop hacking and the success of the NexDock… except you can’t turn either of those into a fully-functioning self-contained ordinary-looking or upgradeable laptop with no wires hanging out, can you?