The Revo is relatively simple to set up. Connect the AC adapter to the serial cable (the power cord does not plug into the docking station), hook up the serial cable to your PC, open the Revo's case and slide the Revo into the docking station. (The Revo cannot fit into the docking station unless the case is open.) A green LED confirms that the Revo is properly docked and a red LED indicates that the battery is fast charging. The battery charges to 85 per cent capacity in just 1.5 hours and fully charges in four hours. The charged battery lasts about 12 hours.
The Revo is based along the same lines as earlier Psion models, but with considerable cosmetic and technical improvements. You operate this organiser with the 14 touch-sensitive buttons that border its screen or by using the stylus to tap onscreen buttons and menus. Psion has made every effort to keep the operational controls above the keyboard, thus maximising the space available for keys. Still, typing on this small keyboard requires much getting used to, and the keys' tactile feedback is not very satisfying.
Testing for this review, it was possible to type memos, make appointments, add addresses and create a sample spreadsheet using the Psion's built-in applications. Agenda and contact information automatically synchronises with your PC. For other files, such as those made using the Psion's surprisingly advanced word processor and spreadsheet applications, the PsiWin software transfers and converts the files to a PC-compatible format, such as Microsoft Word or Excel. The Revo's PsiWin software is also compatible with Lotus SmartSuite, WordPerfect, dBASE and more.
Psion licences its EPOC operating system from Symbian, so the interface is not as instantly obvious as with a Microsoft Pocket PC/Handheld PC based device. However, the steps to perform tasks are relatively intuitive. The Revo is accompanied by an extensive handbook that provides a detailed introduction to the comprehensive suite of PIM applications and check out the CD-ROM for additional utilities and tools.
The Revo's built-in applications are Calc, Time, Word, Data, Sheet and Cascade. Additional applications include Today View, Agenda, Contacts, Phone and Jotter. The Revo also supports e-mail, SMS messaging, Web browsing, PC synchronisation and connections to compatible mobile phones through its infrared port and an optional travel modem. If you are looking for an alternative to both Pocket PC and Palm OS organisers, consider the Psion Revo.
Also available for the Revo is a collection of Psion Accessories and Psion Software