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ASUS Eee PC, ASUS Eee PC, ASUS Eee PC... it's all we seem to hear these days.
That is all about to change and the consumer is about to get a lot more choice in this lower cost ultra mobile notebook segment. MSI is one of many companies (Acer, GIGABYTE, ECS and GeCube are the others who will have models out in around June - July) who are busily working on Eee competitors.
Over the past month or so MSI's Wind notebook has been widely documented over the web but until down specific details and photos have been hard to come by. U100 will be MSI's first major fighter against Eee and in an exclusive internal document seen by TweakTown, it claims 6 out of 9 design specification wins against the 7" Eee PC.
Shipping in mid to late May, the U100 ships with your choice of Windows XP or Linux and will get its power from an Intel Atom 1.6GHz processor based on a motherboard using the 945GMS + ICH7M chipsets. It supports up to 2GB of DDR2 667 memory and includes an 80GB 2.5" SATA hard drive. It sports a 10" WSVGA LCD with a wide screen resolution of 1024 x 600 which MSI claims is going to be much better for web surfing compared to Eee. MSI makes notable mention of the 12" wide keyboard which should be much easier to work with compared to smaller keyboards - each letter key measures 17.5mm wide and the touch pad is 54mm wide.
You'll also get a 4-in-1 card reader, three USB 2.0 ports, GB network port, 802.11B/G wireless and Bluetooth V2.0 EDR. As far as multimedia goes, you'll get HD audio through its stereo speakers and a 1.3MP camera (0.3MP on the 8.9" model which comes later).
You get a choice between 3 cell and 6 cell batteries and with the 3 cell battery installed, the whole system weighs less than 1KG and measures 260*180*19-31.5mm.
Now, about those pictures...
Expect a full hands-on a little later next month.
Kingston Technology, the world's largest memory manufacturer, has today taken the covers off an interesting new memory product for notebook users.
Say hello to Kingston's DDR2-667 SO-DIMM notebook memory. You can pick it up in 2GB or 4GB kits with timings of 4-4-4-12 at 1.8 volts. The memory company claims it is the perfect solution for notebook users wanting to upgrade from a slower 1GB or 2GB kit.
They also claim these speeds are programmed into SPD, so there are no BIOS adjustments or overclocking needed.
Hsinchu, Taiwan - April 21, 2008 -- Kingston Technology Company, Inc., the independent world leader in memory products, today announced it is first to offer high performance, low-latency DDR2-667 SO-DIMM notebook memory to the world. Offering greater performance options for existing mobile platforms, the HyperX DDR2-667 CL4 SO-DIMM kits in 2GB and 4GB capacities are the first in a new line of memory innovations Kingston plans to release over the next few months to the notebook market.
"Kingston customers asked about higher performance memory for current notebooks and our new DDR2-667 CL4 low-latency SO-DIMMs are the first in a series of new HyperX memory offerings to support this market," said Ann Bai, Product Manager, DRAM Memory, APAC Region, Kingston. "We will continue to expand the product line, including developing a 3GB memory kit."
During Computex in early June this year, Intel's low power consuming and tiny Atom processor will get a chance to shine with ASUS' hugely successful Eee PC low cost computer device.
PC World managed to get the word from the CEO himself during a launch event for the Eee PC 900 during a launch event in Taiwan recently. Don't expect ASUS to suck up all the attention though as ECS, GIGABYTE, MSI, Acer, GeCube are all working on new low cost computers to try and take away market share from the ever-popular Eee.
Asustek plans to launch a new version of the Eee PC armed with Intel's Atom microprocessor at the Computex trade show in Taipei this June, Asustek's CEO said Monday.
Atom is the name of the processor formerly called Diamondville. It was designed for low-cost laptop PCs, ultramobile PCs, Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs) and other small devices aimed at connecting to the Internet. The processor is tiny, less than 25 square millimeters, will be priced low, and run at a battery-efficient 0.6 watts to 2.5 watts thermal design power, according to Intel.
More details have come our way from MSI in relation to the upcoming low-cost "Wind" notebook, their answer to the EeePC from ASUS.
This 1Kg wonder will run Windows XP on an 8.9-inch or 10-inch wide LCD screen with a resolution of 1024x600. What's also interesting to note is that MSI has managed to squeeze in an 80GB 2.5" HDD.
Pricing has not been made clear as yet, but it is said we should see the notebook become available in June.
For further information, grab this news release from MSI.
yTaipeizMSI Notebook is drawing mass attention with the coming release of the MSI Wind Notebook. Intel has already made its presentation with the MSI Wind Notebook in Shanghai during IDF (Intel Development Forum). The light and graceful MSI Wind Notebook will provide the simplest operating conditions for the everyday enjoyment for our users.
Living in the new age of the internet, every person has the needs for effective internet connection both at professionally and personally. MSI offers the new Wind Notebook to meet the demands of the modern people, in providing a lighter and more convenient notebook computer.
Our friends over at bit-tech managed to get hold of one of the first ASUS Eee PC 900 low-cost computers and unboxed it for everyone to see in its full glory.
It is said to be available from May 1st in the UK and brings with it a larger 8.9" screen featuring a 1024 x 600 resolution. It comes with the same Intel Celeron-M ULV 353 CPU (630MHz) and a G945 mobile chipset that features Intel GMA 900 graphics.
According to bit-tech, "It also comes with 1GB DDR2 as standard this time, which is twice that of the original Eee, and between 12 and 20GB of flash storage - 4GB onboard and 8-to-16GB from a separate module. It still weighs less than 1kg but it is fractionally heavier than the previous model. In addition, it features an upgraded 1.3MP webcam, but the same four cell, 2.5 hour battery (although a six cell battery is available) and 802.11b/g WiFi."
Check out the rest of the unboxing shots over here.
Over the weekend a guide has surfaced on the Net from a newish tutorial website called Cyb3rGlitch, which details quite well, how to overclock the first generation of ASUS cheapy and increasing popular Eee PC computers.
The guide suggests which programs to use and which work on various Eee models and eitheer Windows XP or Linux variants of the operating system. After offering a quick CPU overclocking theory lesson, they move onto the fun part, overclocking the Eee! Cutting through all the useful information, Vito Cassisi managed to increase the Intel Celeron M processor clock speed from 900MHz to 1GHz.
It was all done by increasing the Front Side Bus (FSB) from 100MHz up to 110MHz. It may not seem like much in comparison to desktop systems which can spin their wheels at up to and over 600MHz FSB but for such a small little unit, a 10% processor overclock ain't too bad in our books.
If you're an Eee PC owner and want a free little speed boost, head on over to the guide and read more.
We find ourselves back at Register Hardware who managed to take some happy snaps of some Eee PC-like clone small notebook computers that use Intel's upcoming low power consuming Atom processor.
A new and relatively unknown brand called Thinno was showing notebooks fitted with 1.6GHz Atom processors and 512MB of memory with either Linux or Windows XP.
Next up is a mystery system which some are already suggesting is MSI's Wind PC, as the colors may suggest, but we have no confirmation on that at this stage and will try and get some answers soon.
More over at Register Hardware.
A user on Flickr by the name of "mgminthu" has uploaded pictures of what looks like Intel's upcoming low-cost Netbook, or Eco PC, as it is being called by the photo uploader.
While the shots appear as if they were taken at a trade show event in Thailand, we can work out some of the specs of the Eco PC. It is said to use an Intel Ultra Low Voltage (ULV) 900MHz processor and will include between 512MB and 1GB of DDR2 memory depending on the selected model.
There are three models to choose from including the Eco PC 2G, Eco PC 20G and Eco PC 40G. The 2G includes 2GB of flash memory and 512MB DDR2 memory while the 20G seems to include a 20GB solid state drive and the 40G a 40GB solid state drive - both 20G and 40G models include 1GB of DDR2 memory.
Each model is based on a motherboard using a mobile Intel 915GMS Express chipset. There will be 7" and 9" LCD versions with the latter supporting up to 800 x 480 pixel resolution. Each includes a built-in 4-in-1 card reader along with 10/100 Ethernet networking and stereo 2.1 channel speakers.
The low-cost notebook computer market is definitely heating up in front of our eyes!
Acer, the Taiwanese computer maker has launched some new notebooks in the "Gemstone Blue" line.
The top model was designed to give users a high-definition home theater experience. With this in mind, the laptop hosts a screen resolution the same as HDTV, at 1,920 pixels by 1,080 pixels, and also features six speakers, including a subwoofer, for genuine 5.1 HD surround sound.
The computer will launch in April in the U.S. for $1,999 USD. There will be other models, with lesser specs such as fewer speakers, and a smaller resolution (Still HD), and which will sell for less at around $1,700 USD. In keeping with the HD theme, both laptops will have Blu-ray disc drives.
Acer has boasted that these are the first "six speaker" and "True HD" laptops available on the market. You can see more about them here.
ASUS, the world's most prolific PC manufacturer has been in the spotlight recently over its branded PC's, in this case UMPC's, which have set in motion an entirely new genre of affordable, easy to use laptops.
"Eee" as it became known is now set to sell the next phase of production (5 million units), with two of every three units sold being loaded with a Microsoft Windows operating system. The other one third of those units will contain the Linux operating system that has been sold in earlier units of this small, highly useful mobile laptop.
According to a quote from Reuters; Asustek Chairman Jonney Shih said at a press conference that the Microsoft operating system would be Windows XP and will be priced around $390 to $400 USD.
From the same article, Lillian Lin, Head of Marketing mentioned that sales were strongest in Europe, with Asia Pacific and China coming in second. It seems clear that Asustek has now learned what VIA Technologies have known for a long time; that the low income households and consumers also want to tap into the digital world of electronics and PC's.
The Eee PC is certainly a positive step in that direction. You can read more here.