Cousin to the likes of Archos and OQO, Viliv has been a part of the UMPC world for years. Unfortunately, that world is shrinking rapidly, and anyone relying solely on it is finding it increasingly hard to stay in business. The hardware is expensive, the applications limited, and everyone just wants iPads now. So it should come as no surprise that Viliv is calling it a day.
UMPC Portal had some hints over the last few months, such as people leaving the company and the cessation of ad purchasing. Now it’s become clear that the struggling company has been trying to offload its inventory and IP for a while now, and is now on the verge of being liquidated.
It’s sad to see a hardware maker go, but the fact is they hitched their wagon to a falling star, and the fast-moving market proved too mercurial for something as staid as a Windows-running full-keyboard mobile device (like their latest, the N5) to stay relevant for long. These little devices always amazed me with their versatility and build quality.
Just another period of tech we’ll look back on with fondness. So long, Viliv! Here’s hoping your employees have a soft landing.