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Sony Says Eee PC Signals "Race To the Bottom" 393

Posted by kdawson
from the what-you-mean-we dept.
Alex Dekker writes "Sony's Mike Abary says in an interview, 'If [Asus's Eee PC] starts to do well, we are all in trouble.' Presumably by 'we' he means all the hardware manufacturers who sell over-priced, full-fat laptops. And he's not going to be too pleased when he sees the Linux-powered, sub-$200 Elonex One. Looks like what's bad for Sony may be good for the consumer." The CNet article mentions that a version of the Eee running XP is available in Japan now and will be coming to the US within weeks.
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Sony Says Eee PC Signals "Race To the Bottom"

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  • The CNET article (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 29, 2008 @12:43PM (#22601268)
    January 24, 2008 9:49 AM PST
    Eee PC with Windows launches in Japan, U.S. is next
    Posted by Erica Ogg | Post a comment

    Asus launched the first Windows version of its popular Eee PC in Japan on Thursday, according to a report in The Register.

    Called the Eee PC 4G-X, it will come pre-loaded with Windows XP Home Edition. It has the same specs as the original 4G model with Linux introduced last fall: 4GB of storage, Intel Celeron processor, 512MB of RAM, 802.11 b/g Wi-Fi, and more.

    Eee PC

    The U.S. version of the Eee PC, pictured above, uses a Linux-based operating system. Next month we'll see the Windows XP version.
    (Credit: Erica Ogg/CNET News.com)

    The Japanese launch is good news for potential U.S. buyers of the computer, a cross between an oversized Internet tablet and a notebook, because it means the U.S. version is coming very soon.

    Asus originally promised we'd have the Windows version of the tiny Asus Eee PC in December. The Taiwan-based company now says we can expect it in late February or early March. Though the original date came and went, it certainly hasn't stopped customers from ordering the Linux-based version: the company reportedly moved 350,000 units in the first quarter it was available.
  • by betterunixthanunix (980855) on Friday February 29, 2008 @01:28PM (#22601980)
    People are easily dazzled and convinced to buy things they don't need.
  • IT also has an external VGA port - 1680×1050 max support, if you are plugged in and sitting on a desk.

    (still, would like to see 1024 x 768 when they bump up the screen size later this year)
  • by IL-CSIXTY4 (801087) on Friday February 29, 2008 @01:37PM (#22602150) Homepage
    I have EeePCLinuxOS on an SD card for a full Linux desktop, but I hardly ever use it. The built-in Xandros has Thunderbird, Firefox, Pidgin, and bash. That's all I need, really. It boots in ~30sec. The built-in SSD shows up as an IDE drive, so you can install whatever you want on it.
  • I want one for this exact reason as well. Been too busy/lazy to really research it (and/or get my employer to buy me one).. how well does it function as a "portable thin client"?

    Wonderfully. It comes with Firefox preconfigured with Flash and other plugins, Thunderbird, Kontact, OpenOffice, and lots of other useful apps.

    Can I reinstall it to get rid of the easy mode programs and turn it into a simple portable xterm?

    Well, ctrl-alt-T gets you an xterm in the default install. You can reinstall if you want (and some people have been putting XP on them), but you might not want to.

    In fact, at the risk of having my geek card revoked: I don't even go into advanced mode anymore. It boots more slowly than easy mode, and easy mode is good enough for me 99% of the time. I'm a huge KDE fan so I expected to hate the basic launcher and "need" the full KDE desktop, but all that extra flexibility kind of misses the point of the Eee PC.

  • by xoff00 (594043) <blueNO@SPAMrocinante.com> on Friday February 29, 2008 @01:49PM (#22602332) Homepage
    Damn well, with the caveats of a small screen size and small keyboard.

    The "easy mode" is just a customized icewm. A quick hack loads full KDE if you like, but I actually haven't bothered. Ctrl-alt-T brings up an xterm even in easy mode, and I just do everything through that.

    I recompiled the kernel (to support 2gb memory - the hardware supports 2gb but the default kernel only supports 1gb, as it wasn't compiled with large memory support) and installed openvpn and gprs (cell modem) support via an external usb bluetooth dongle...there is nothing I can't do on it remotely (openvpn in to my network, run ssh and firefox for internal websites). It even nicely runs our main product, a gargantuan java app.

  • by Neil Jansen (955182) on Friday February 29, 2008 @02:02PM (#22602514) Homepage
    I use mine daily and don't think the 800x480 is such a compromise. Once you implement some tricks to optimize your window manager and web browser, it's not bad at all. I run web apps like Google Docs, Mail, Calendar, Reader, etc.

    I'm not exactly sure what a 'full blown' internet application is, but I've never ran into anything and been like 'damn, this is totally unusable'.

  • by digitalamish (449285) on Friday February 29, 2008 @02:30PM (#22602860)
    I bought an EEE a couple of months ago. My job gives me a full size laptop for support, and I still prefer the EEE. I loaded XP on it (instructions come with the laptop), and I can use all of my remote access tools, and access my work machines remotely. I find that I am even taking this think into meetings with me for notes. It boots up in a few seconds, and the battery is good enough for a two hour+ meeting. Interestingly, management is now showing interest in this little device. Combine it with Citrix, and you have a full size laptop killer. Give someone a cheaper desktop machine for the heavy lifting, and use this thing to bridge between a Crackberry and mega-laptop.

    Honestly, how often do you need a DVD burner? What PCMCIA (or PCCard) device can you NOT get in a USB flavor now? Do you really need a dual core CPU to catch up on email or browse the web? If you can get used to the 2/3rd size keyboard, and the mini screen, this thing rocks!

Man must shape his tools lest they shape him. -- Arthur R. Miller

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