【Mitsubishi Electric】AMITY

The AMiTY was a pen-interface computer designed to feel like using pen and paper in the application of reception duties at information counters, for sales-support tasks such as managing customer information and providing consulting services, and for maintenance services such as patrols or regular inspections. Mitsubishi Electric announced the AMiTY in 1993. The cordless pen, which worked by electromagnetic induction, was used for menu selections, editing with gestures, direct entry of text and drawings in simple operations.

The AMiTY was the industry’s smallest pen tablet with a built-in hard disk drive. The case was made of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic, and the computer was loaded with a 3.3 volt, low-power 20 MHz i386SL CPU, 4 MB of main memory (expandable to 8 MB), and a 1.8-inch 40 MB hard disk drive. Despite this, the A4 tablet was only 25.4 mm thick and weighed just 1.4 kg.

The screen was a 9.4-inch monochrome backlit LCD. The surface was specially coated with a non-slip sheet to keep the pen from slipping and to give a pen-and-paper tactile feel. The coating also reduced reflections from fluorescent lights and other light sources. The AMiTY ran the Microsoft Windows for Pen Computing operating system.

The AMiTY was standard equipped with two IC card slots, a JEIDA 4.1/PCMCIA 2.0-compliant Type I (3.3-millimeter wide)/Type II (5.0-millimeter wide) slot and a Type III (10.5-millimeter wide) slot. These slots enabled a wide array of system configurations, including LAN and WAN connectivity.

The AMiTY could be used for presentations as well by connecting it to a large VGA color CRT or to an LCD projector. The external monitor would display in sync with the pen tablet’s LCD screen.

Specifications of the AMiTY pen tablet
CPU i386SL (20MHz)3.3V
High-speed math coprocessor (optional) Equivalent to an i387SX (20 MHz)
Memory Cache memory 16KB
RAM 4MB(expandable up to 8 MB)
Storage memory devices Hard disk drive One 1.8-inch 40 MB drive
External flexible disk drive (optional) One 3.5-inch 1.44 MB drive
Display device Display method VGA 9.4-inch monochrome backlit LCD screen, 16 gradations
Japanese mode Resolution: 640 x 480 pixels
Japanese: 40 characters x 25 lines, 16 x 19 pixels
Alphanumeric: 80 characters x 25 lines, 8 x 19 pixels
English mode Resolution: 640 x 480 pixels (VGA)
640 x 350 pixels (EGA)
640 x 200 (CGA)
Alphanumeric: 80 characters x 30 lines, 8 x 16 pixels
80 alphanumeric characters x 25 lines, 8 x 14 pixels or 8 x 8 pixels
External monitor (optional) Connectable to a 14-inch color monitor
Input devices Stylus pen Electromagnetic induction cordless pen
External keyboard (optional) 106-key JIS keyboard, AX keyboard
Mouse (optional) RX232-C interface, PS/2
Interfaces RS-232C One channel, standard (D-sub 9 pin, asynchronous)
Printer One channel, standard (Centronics interface, D-sub 25 pin)
External flexible disk drive One channel, standard
External monitor One channel, standard
External keyboard One channel standard (6 pin mini DIN)
IC card Two slots, standard (PCMCIA 2.0-compliant, one Type II and one Type III slot)
Power supply 100 VAC ± 10%, 50/60 Hz ± 1Hz
Power consumption 49VA
Power consumption 21J/S
External dimensions [mm] 297 x 210 x 25.4 (w x d x h)
Weight 1.4kg