Viliv N5 Hands-On: The Power of a Netbook in the Palm of Your Hand


Even the best smart phones have their shortcomings when it comes to composing e-mail, Web surfing, and composing tweets and blog posts. The low resolution screens on even a large screen phones ensure that you have to zoom in/out on Web pages or scroll horizontally. The keyboards are too small for doing any serious writing. And, it goes without saying that no smart phone can give you the same Windows operating system you use on your regular notebook or desktop.

Enter the Viliv N5, a 4.8-inch, .88-pound  mobile Internet device that looks and acts like a tiny netbook. Its diminutive display outputs at a generous 1024×600 resolution, the same as most 10.1-inch netbooks and offers resistive touch. Its 1.33-GHz Intel Atom Z520 processor allows it to run Windows 7 Starter or Home Premium. A 32GB SSD stores your data and programs while using less power and space than a traditional hard drive. Optional built-in 3G even keeps you connected everywhere you go.

We had a chance to play with the N5 at Viliv’s CES booth and we were very impressed with its small size, but large build quality. Nothing about this MID feels cheap, from the durable, rubberized buttom and lid to the responsive keyboard and bright screen.

The touchscreen on the display unit was not operational (our rep said drivers are still being finalized), but we really enjoyed navigating around the desktop with the tiny touchpad on the upper left corner of the deck. Left and right mouse buttons site on the upper right and while the separate between the buttons and the pad would be odd on a system that you put on a desk or your lap, it makes perfect sense of an object of this size where you can navigate with one thumb and click with another.

We didn’t get a chance to do performance tests or surf the Web (connectivity was limited in the booth), but we did run a video clip, using Viliv’s own built-in media player and it appeared smooth. We wonder how the N5 performs when running Skype as it does have a front-facing 1.3-megapixel webcam.

The N5 will be shipping later in Q1. Exact pricing has been announced, but our rep said it would probably start around $500.

We look forward to really putting the Viliv N5 through its paces once we get a review unit to test in our lab. For now, check out our hands-on video to see the N5 in action.


Avram Piltch
Avram Piltch
The official Geeks Geek, as his weekly column is titled, Avram Piltch has guided the editorial and production of since 2007. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram programmed several of LAPTOP's real-world benchmarks, including the LAPTOP Battery Test. He holds a master’s degree in English from NYU.
Avram Piltch on
Facebook Twitter Google+
Email* (will not be published)
*Indicates required field
Submit Comments

All Product Types Accessories Cars Digital Camcorders Digital Cameras eReaders GPS Laptops MP3 & Video Players Projectors Smartphones Software Storage Tablets / MIDs VoIP Wi-Fi
All Subcategories
All Subcategories All-Purpose Budget Business Desktop Replacement Gaming Multimedia Netbook Nettop Rugged Student Tablet PCs Ultraportable
Acer Alienware Apple Archos ASUS Averatec BenQ CTL Corp. Dell Digital Storm eMachines Emtec Everex Fujitsu GammaTech Gateway General Dynamics Getac Gigabyte Hercules HP HTC iBuyPower Intel Lenovo MSI Nokia Nvidia OCZ OLPC OQO Origin Panasonic Sager Samsung Sony Sylvania Systemax TabletKiosk Toshiba Verizon Viewsonic Viliv VooDoo Workhorse PC ZT Systems
Minimum Rating
Any Rating 4.5 Stars 4.0 Stars 3.5 Stars 3.0 Stars
Screen Size
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 20 4 5 6 7 8 9
1024x576 1024x600 1024x768 1200X800 1280 x 720 1280x1024 1280x768 1280x800 1366x678 1366x768 1440x1050 1440x900 1600x768 1600x900 1680x1050 1680x945 1920x1080 1920x1200 800x400 800x480
Weight Range
10.1 - 12.0 pounds 12.1 - 14.0 pounds 14.1 - 16.0 pounds 2 lbs 2 pounds and under 2+ lbs 2.1 - 4.0 pounds 4.1 - 6.0 pounds 6.1 - 8.0 pounds 8.1 - 10.0 pounds Over 16 pounds Under 2 pounds
more options