The Portfolio was one of the first, if not the first MSDOS compatible pocket computer. It was fully compatible with the IBM PC standard, although it was difficult to use software because of its very small screen.
Its card drive can accept :
- optional 32K, 64K or 128K memory (RAM) cards,
- 64K or 128K programmable (PROM) cards,
- 128K masked ROM cards,
- and 512K Flash Memory cards.
It had several built-in programs :
- Worksheet: Lotus 1-2-3 File-compatible spreadsheet,
- Text editor with basic word processing funtions,
- Calculator with five memories, four number formats and editable "tape" of calculations,
- Address book with virtually unlimited name and address storage and automatic phone dialing,
- Personal calendar/appointment book with programmable alarms,
- File transfer to upload and download files from compatible PC using optional Smart Parallel Interface,
- Clipboard to move or copy data within a file or between files or programs,
- and an operating system similar to MS-DOS 2.11
A lot of interfaces were developped for this computer including MIDI I/O.
Fun fact: This computer appeared in Terminator 2. It was used by young John Connor to break into an ATM bank machine.
Malcolm Ramage specifies:
While you have the machine down as originating from the US, the machine was developed by the UK firm known as DIPP, who developed the machine, but did not have the finance or ability to distribute it. As a result, Atari took on the distribution and manufacture of the device, while DIPP provided the groundwork for the new portable Atari's, STylus (ST Pad) and the ST Book.