January 17, 2011
“Telikin has an elegant solution for keeping in touch with its easy-to-use all-in-one computer.”
When's the last time you wrote a letter? Handwritten correspondence is pass', leaving some of our senior family members or friends in a communications void. If you have a family member in this situation, Telikin has an elegant solution for keeping in touch with its easy-to-use all-in-one computer.
Set Up: Figuring out where all the cords go can make set up daunting. Not with the Telikin. Just plug in the power cord, the Ethernet cord'if wireless isn't available'and the USB keyboard and mouse. Then press the power button and you are set.
View slideshow: Telikin screen shots
Display: The system is built around an 18.6-inch LCD touchscreen. A 1.3-MP Webcam is in the middle of the clear casing above the display. Behind the display, you'll find the guts of the system. On the right is the power button and the DVD drive. Behind the unit are two USB ports and the power and Ethernet cords. The left side of the display houses two more USB ports and a 6-in-1 memory card reader. Built-in speakers flank the LCD
The touchscreen is extremely responsive and has great color and clarity. A touchscreen is a great solution of hands that do not have the dexterity for typing.
Software: The included software is listed down the left side of the screen regardless of which feature you use. For security purposes, the software you see is what you get, but Telikin has included a comprehensive set of software to ensure that your family member's needs are met.
The Home screen provides quick access to commonly used features, like weather and news, and daily notices, such as new email, appointments for the day, and update notifications from Telikin.
Video Chat has not completely rolled out yet. Telikin has partnered with the nation's leading video-chat provider and expects availability within the next month or two. Contacts who also have video chat capabilities are marked. Chats are initiated with three simple clicks. When the unit is ordered, Telikin sets up the video chat feature, so family and friends can be contacted immediately, but adding new chat contacts is simple.[Editor's note: in summer 2011, Video Chat was completed, set up by Telikin was then no longer needed]
Mail can connect to a current gmail account or Telikin can create one before the unit ships. Creating and reading messages is simple as is attaching documents.
Photos is linked with Facebook to show the user's photos as well as photos of his or her friends. If there isn't an existing Facebook account, Telikin will create one. The social networking site is integrated behind the scenes so your relative will never actually interact with the site unless her or she wants to. All photos are stored in Albums instead of folders, providing seniors with a familiar method of storing pictures. If the senior takes pictures with a digital camera, he or she can add them to the computer with the media card reader and by following simple onscreen instructions.
Weather is set to local coverage as a default, but other areas can be shown based on their zip code.
News can be viewed by a specific source or by category: US, world, politics, business, technology, entertainment, health, science, and sports.
Calendar lets you setup, manage, and share events, and offers reminders for items on the schedule.
Contacts houses address book information and includes a Facebook picture next each entry for quick identification.
Web takes away the hassle of typing URLs into a browser. The main page shows nine site categories, such as General, Health, and Shopping. Four sites are listed with each category. If a user wants to visit a site that is not listed, the URL can be typed in and saved to Favorites for future use.
Games includes entertaining time passers like Soltaire, Black Jack, and Mah Jong Tiles.
Performance: With a dual core 1.8-GHz processor, 2GB of memory, and a 320GB hard drive, the Telikin was speedy. Pictures and all other features loaded quickly.
Keyboard and Mouse: A USB keyboard and mouse are included, but it's your choice whether or not you use them. When they are disconnected, the Telikin recognizes that an on-screen keyboard is needed. The onscreen keyboard was as responsive as the touchscreen, although for longer documents a keyboard would probably be preferable.
Special Features: Since Telikin is based on a Linux system, seniors do not to worry about downloading or updating the computer ever. It is all done for them in the background by Telikin. Additionally, friendly tech support and the Tech Buddy feature help with any questions about the Telikin's features. Tech Buddy allows a person designated by the owner remote access to the computer. Is your grandmother unsure how to send an email? Instead of figuring it out over the phone, her Tech Buddy can go on the computer and move the mouse to show her what to do.
Conclusion: Telikin is not a one-size fits all computer and does not offer enough flexibility for many users. For many Baby Boomers, however, this system is the perfect device to get and stay connected. It is available for $699.99 at the company's Website.
What I Liked
Areas of Improvement
Apps for word processing would be nice. Telikin is working with OpenOffice to provide this feature in the near future.[editor's note: Telikin added both Word and Excel compatible software to the computer in 2011].
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National Girl Gadgets Examiner
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