Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Portables Hardware

Dell Considering ARM-Based Smartbooks 298

Posted by Soulskill
from the you-and-what-arm-eee dept.
wonkavader sends us this quote from an article in PCWorld: "In an effort to expand its Linux offerings, Dell is researching new netbook-type devices and will soon offer netbook Linux OS upgrades, a company official said on Wednesday. The company is researching the possibility of offering new Linux-based mobile devices called smartbooks, said Todd Finch, senior product marketing manager for Linux clients, at the OpenSourceWorld conference in San Francisco. The company will also upgrade its Ubuntu Linux OS for netbooks to the latest version in the next few weeks ... Smartbooks with Arm chips have inherent advantages over x86 chips like Atom, such as lower power consumption and longer battery life, according to Finch. The chips are also becoming more powerful, as indicated by the growing number of applications on smartphones, he said. 'I think it's natural and reasonable for us to begin looking at them as they begin scaling their processors up.'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Dell Considering ARM-Based Smartbooks

Comments Filter:
  • Uh-huh. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by XanC (644172) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @02:14AM (#29074313)

    And what reason do we have to believe this isn't a just negotiating tactic against Microsoft?

    • Re:Uh-huh. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by DigiShaman (671371) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @02:27AM (#29074359) Homepage

      These are rough times with shitty sales. I'm sure Dell is just trying to stay afloat by what ever means. The days of exclusive deals between the industry giants is hold for now at least.

      • Re:Uh-huh. (Score:5, Interesting)

        by simula (1032230) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:41AM (#29074613) Homepage
        I have been raptly awaiting Pegatron's $200 arm netbook with an 8 hour runtime:
        from January [engadget.com]
        from July [ubergizmo.com]

        If Dell is willing to ship what is practically the same device, then this competition can be nothing but good for everyone who wants one.
        • Re:Uh-huh. (Score:5, Informative)

          by electrosoccertux (874415) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @10:41AM (#29075903)

          I just bought an Acer Aspire One AO751h.

          It has 6-8h (wlan/no wlan, depending on brightness). it's got an Atom z520 and the GMA500 graphics chip (very low power) which has PowerVR which can accelerate 1080p videos. There's some driver issues ATM (jumping through hoops with special settings in KMPlayer) but h264, AVC1 play great. VC.1 plays as well, but I have use DXVA checker to get it to play without dropping frames-- showing that the capability is in the hardware, just needs some driver work.

          It weighs 3lbs, has a 11.6" screen (1366x768) and a full-sized keyboard. It's the perfect size for a netbook; the 10.1" screens don't have enough vertical viewing resolution and you end up scrolling up/down all the time in Excel spreadsheets and Firefox/Chrome, especially if you roll with the taskbar on the bottom like most people. 768vert is 28% more viewing area vertically compared with the 10.1" models.

          With Win7 on it and 2GB RAM, it flies; I love it.
          There's really no need to wait.

    • Re:Uh-huh. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Tubal-Cain (1289912) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @02:47AM (#29074423) Journal

      "Just"? Negotiating tactic is most certainly at least the consolation prize, but they seem to be doing well with their Ubuntu systems.

      It seems to me that this is more a case of not keeping all of one's eggs in the MS-x86 basket. Using Linux now gives them a head start in developing a polished interface over their competitors and experience in migrating platforms.
      Using ARM now gives them time to work the kinks out of the hardware integration so their ARM laptops can be more stable than the competition's when everyone else starts jumping on the bandwagon.

      • Re:Uh-huh. (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Locutus (9039) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @01:19PM (#29076803)
        they are already experienced at using ARM because they already ship GNU/Linux on ARM in their computers with the quickboot bios called "Latitude ON". It's an ARM processor and memory on the mobo along with the x86 chips and boots Montavista Linux. So I would say that they are already experienced at this to know how well it does work and would like to capitalize on that ability. As stated, it also takes Microsoft out of the picture regarding existing contracts and changes the ways Microsoft can pressure them to do what Microsoft wants them to do in the design and software packaging whatever that may be.

        IIRC, on those laptops with "Latitude ON", when running on the ARM subsection, that laptops have runtimes counted in days, not single digit hours. And they can play video, do web access, email etc so Dell is in a position to lead or help lead in this sector. Their work with Ubuntu on x86 is another major plus for them and with ARM Inc working with Ubuntu on the ARM platform, that's a strong partnership( Dell, Canonical, ARM ).

        This is an important one to follow and it would be great to see something from Dell this year.

        LoB
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by drizek (1481461)

      Because it will sell, and the margins could be high. I imagine something like this would be popular in "developing markets" as well.

    • Re:Uh-huh. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by binarylarry (1338699) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:32AM (#29074573)

      Microsoft is planning to build "Microsoft PC" products that are Microsoft Software+Hardware.

      You think Dell is just going to see back and watch that happen and not have a plan B?

      • Re:Uh-huh. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by secondhand_Buddah (906643) <.secondhand.buddah. .at. .gmail.com.> on Saturday August 15, 2009 @06:35AM (#29075139) Homepage Journal
        I honestly don't think Microsoft are this stupid. Getting into the hardware game will give them absolutely no advantage. If anything, it will isolate them from their strongest allies who will definitely begin to step up a unified Linux agenda if MS were to make such a mistake.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by illumin8 (148082)

          I honestly don't think Microsoft are this stupid. Getting into the hardware game will give them absolutely no advantage. If anything, it will isolate them from their strongest allies who will definitely begin to step up a unified Linux agenda if MS were to make such a mistake.

          This is not speculation. Maybe you've heard of the Zune HD? The Zune HD is using a new Nvidia Tegra [arstechnica.com] chip and is designed to be a competitor for iPod touch and iPhone. One of the things Microsoft is advertising is "the full internet

      • Re:Uh-huh. (Score:5, Funny)

        by John Hasler (414242) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @06:53AM (#29075181) Homepage

        > Microsoft is planning to build "Microsoft PC" products that are Microsoft
        > Software+Hardware.

        We can only hope they are that stupid.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by doctormetal (62102)

      ehh? Microsoft has an OS that is suited for such devices. Either windows embedded CE or Windows Embedded nav ready.
      Or even the CE derivative Windows mobile.

      See http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windowsembedded/dd630116.aspx [microsoft.com]

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by squiggleslash (241428)

      Because the ground's shifted.

      I don't doubt sabre rattling will help, but I doubt Dell is anything like as interested as it used to be in exclusive contracts. Being forced to ship Windows with every PC just to get a rate of $50 per Windows box instead of $60 (you think Microsoft would charge any OEM full price, especially one with Dell's marketshare?) makes little or no sense given the current situation.

      And what is the current situation? The current situation is that consumers are no longer locked to Wi

  • This just in... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by MrMage (1240674) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @02:18AM (#29074323)
    Lower power consumption leads to longer battery life.

    In all seriousness though, I once had someone tell me as I was looking into programming in assembly that I should learn an ARM-Based syntax. It still hasn't paid off completely yet, but this is a step in the right direction.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Rockoon (1252108)

      Lower power consumption leads to longer battery life.

      I'm not sure that you understand how things work.

      Lower power consumption leads to smaller cheaper batteries with the same capacity, a fact which manufacturers will surely take advantage of to increase profits. As long as competition exists which uses less efficient CPU's, thats the way its going to be.

      • Re:This just in... (Score:4, Interesting)

        by lobiusmoop (305328) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @04:20AM (#29074747) Homepage

        Agreed. I'm looking forward to getting something like the Gecko Edubook [laptopshop.co.uk] which can run on cheap AA batteries instead of an expensive custom Li-Ion battery.

        • by ZosX (517789)

          I think the custom lithium ion would be a lot cheaper and more convenient than 4 hours you get off of 8 AAs. Kind of reminds me of the game gear.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by pslam (97660)
        Smaller batteries also means smaller devices, a fact that many manufacturers have been taking advantage of for a long time. For example, almost every mobile phone out there is ARM powered.
  • MS might not be selling any ARM-compatible systems at the moment (embedded OSs aside), but I would bet they have experimental ARM builds of everything they've produced in the past 5 years.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by palumbor (854887)
      I think you have microsoft confused with apple.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 15, 2009 @02:41AM (#29074401)

      The very applications that keep a lot of people running Windows instead of e.g. Linux also keep Windows firmly locked to x86.
      Take away the third-party closed source applications/games, and suddenly Windows is looking pretty crappy even to your average consumer.
      Apple handled this with emulation, but they were moving to a faster chip.

      • Yeah, but, no one really wants to run a bleeding edge game on an arm netbook. It wouldn't work for anyone, even if it was compiled for arm. They do not have to worry about games on netbooks. Most applications need very little to be transitioned from windows desktop to a windows mobile environment on a non x86 cpu. Or at least that was the case six years ago.
        • by LoRdTAW (99712) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:13AM (#29074501)

          Not every game needs to be bleeding edge to attract players. There are plenty of simple casual games that have a much larger market than the "core" gamer market that will run perfectly fine on a netbook (or what ever the hell they are calling them now). The idea is to focus on game play and mechanics rather than eye candy.

        • There is a lot more than games that tie people to windows, som eof which come from 3rd parties which may have no interest in porting the new version of Windows..
    • by rtfa-troll (1340807) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:31AM (#29074571)

      Probably they do have experimental builds, but there's very little point in MS actually making products from them. The reason why you want Windows is because Windows apps run on Windows. They also have to produce ARM builds of all of the software that people need. They can do that for their own stuff, but most Windows software is not produced by MS. It's important to remember that when you get Ubuntu, you get a whole load more software than on a plain Windows box and even most of the software not included comes with source code so it's relatively easy for someone to port it to the new architecture. Not to mention that Windows Mobile has done real damage to the Windows brand by looking so much worse than Symbian phones, let alone Android or the iPhone. They can't afford to keep repeating that.

      The Intel Atom is produced specifically to make an i386 platform which competes with the ARM. MS would do much better to commit to that kind of platform. The power consumption is "good enough" and they don't risk splitting their market share.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by bhtooefr (649901)

        What MS could do is change the executable format for Windows 8, to allow for fat binaries, and then make their compilers always compile to x86/Itanium/ARM fat binaries.

        (Speaking of that, that's why MS was pushing .NET so hard, because Itanium was supposed to be the future, and MS didn't want to get left behind by CPU architecture changes - hence trying to move everything to interpreted bytecode.)

  • Well... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by timeOday (582209) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @02:32AM (#29074371)
    At least now Microsoft can't object to Linux sales on the claim people are wiping them to install bootleg Windows - not on an ARM.
  • ARM vs x86 (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Pentium100 (1240090)

    ARM has an advantage such as lower power consumption, but it also has a huge disadvantage - it does not run x86 programs.

    It will be the same situation like with PDAs ~10 years ago.

    I want some program, it's available for PC, but not available for Psion.

    With this ARM "smartbook", I'll still have to lug around a big laptop to be able to run those programs that the smartbook doesn't. I think that in this regard, I'd rather buy a Fujitsu U810 or equivalent.(17cm x15.5cm x 2.7cm but has Atom and is fully compatib

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Linux. Arm-based netbook already out by Always Innovating:
      http://www.alwaysinnovating.com/home/index.htm

      Most people don't use netbooks for more than email/browsing. This is great for them.

    • Re:ARM vs x86 (Score:4, Informative)

      by operator_error (1363139) <spztoid@gmailDALI.com minus painter> on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:00AM (#29074457)

      but it also has a huge disadvantage - it does not run x86 programs

      Not necessarily a problem at all. If the user chooses Ubuntu, then synaptec, ( or apt-get, aptitude, etc.) will install an application successfully with something that works, transparently.

      • by mcrbids (148650)

        Not necessarily a problem at all. If the user chooses Ubuntu, then synaptec, ( or apt-get, aptitude, etc.) will install an application successfully with something that works, transparently.

        Like Adobe's Flash?

        I didn't think so.

    • Re:ARM vs x86 (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Hymer (856453) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:02AM (#29074465)

      "...but it also has a huge disadvantage - it does not run x86 programs."
      You are missing the point, this is only an issue when using Windows and the point is to get rid of Windows.
      There are already a huge amount of applications moved to other CPU architectures and many others need just to be recompiled.
      Yes I do know that it may not be "just recompile" but the Linux community is much faster to adapt than Windows community.

      • Is there a Mathcad (one program off the top of my head) equivalent for Linux and/or ARM?

        • Wrong target market. These devices will likely be sold as "big iPhones"

          There's a market for such a machine, as long as it's got a web browser, word processor, and a reasonable assortment of other apps available. I'd love to have a spare PC lying around...particularly one that's cheap enough to be slightly reckless with, and has extremely long battery life.

          I'm not entirely convinced that the target market's huge, given that we already have our expensive/precious laptops and iPhones. However, the popularit

        • You may find this link helpful [tinyurl.com]

        • Re:ARM vs x86 (Score:4, Informative)

          by Tubal-Cain (1289912) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @04:56AM (#29074881) Journal
          At the bottom of Mathcad's Wikipedia page [wikipedia.org] you'll find 9 open source options.
      • Re:ARM vs x86 (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Haeleth (414428) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @05:55AM (#29075009) Journal

        You are missing the point, this is only an issue when using Windows and the point is to get rid of Windows.

        It's not quite that simple.

        There are, for example, plenty of cases where people have been able to switch to Linux because they can still run $FAVOURITE_PROGRAM with Wine. And Wine is still tied to x86. I suspect emulating an x86 processor will be a bit beyond most ARM smartbooks.

        There are also a lot of people who, like it or not, do use closed-source software on Linux. I have several closed-source programs installed on the very Linux netbook I'm typing this on. Will the vendors of those programs be happy to port them to ARM? They've already taken a risk just supporting the tiny x86 Linux market; the ARM Linux market is even smaller.

        Don't get me wrong. I love the idea of ARM smartbooks, and if Dell brings one out with Ubuntu on it, I will buy it without a moment's hesitation. I'm just pointing out that x86 is only irrelevant if you only ever use purely F/OSS software, and that isn't universal even among Linux fans.

    • by Artraze (600366)

      While it is true that the ARM will not run programs compiled for the x86, that isn't a huge deal because such a smart book would only _ever_ run linux. How many binary only apps are even available, let alone important, on linux? (BTW, something like 90+% of applications shouldn't need any source level modification to run on an ARM arch.)

      > With this ARM "smartbook", I'll still have to lug around a big laptop to be able to run those programs that the smartbook doesn't.

      As a matter of curiosity, what would

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by pantherace (165052)

        They shouldn't, but a lot of programmers have gotten used to tricks which work on x86.

        Trust me, I've used (at various times) linux/alpha,sparc(64),arm,x86,x86-64,powerpc windows/alpha,x86,x86-64 solaris/x86,x86-64,sparc openvms/alpha.

        The most consistent of those are the various Linux distributions, most mainline software has been whacked enough that it works. Though even there, sometimes people use those tricks, or they make assumptions about sizes, Netscape was a problem on alphas, on both Windows and

        • by Lennie (16154)

          Drivers should be much less of an issue, because Linux is the gonna be the primary platform for these kinds of devices. The only binary-only you'd want to install is probably Flash which has had an ARM-build for years.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by TheRaven64 (641858)
          Both ARM and x86 are:
          • Little endian (actually ARM is bi-endian, but is usually run in little-endian mode).
          • ILP32.

          x86 permits (but discourages because they are slow) unaligned loads and stores. ARM does not, but a compiler can work around this with a (slow) sequence of add shift and mask instructions (the shifts are free on ARM) so this isn't really a problem. Porting from x86 to ARM is largely just a matter of making sure you don't use any inline asm or CPU-specific intrinsics.

          Of the three examples

      • the only problem i can think of is wine itself. if i remember correctly, wine has lots of assembly code for x86 in it. it is really one of the very few free software projects to have this.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by xororand (860319)

      ARM has an advantage such as lower power consumption, but it also has a huge disadvantage - it does not run x86 programs.

      Why is this a problem? Just find a free software distribution that offers packages for ARM, like Debian. Problem solved... but... if you really depend on propietary x86 programs.... Doesn't that worry you at all?

    • by rbanffy (584143) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @11:18AM (#29076087) Homepage Journal

      "it also has a huge disadvantage - it does not run x86 programs"

      This is Slashdot. Being Windows-proof is a feature, not a bug.

  • Ripe for adoption (Score:2, Insightful)

    by raybob (203381)

    I predict that these things are going to take off. Once people realize that they don't need a heavy OS like Windows in order to enjoy a portable platform that provides email & web browsing, any prejudice against will evaporate. Besides, most people won't even notice that Windows is missing.

    One reason PDA's never took off is the man-machine interface. The keyboard is pretty much a must-have for an email & messaging platform. These things are going to be everywhere, especially with carriers eager

    • Re:Ripe for adoption (Score:4, Interesting)

      by bemymonkey (1244086) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:34AM (#29074579)

      I don't think so. The whole point of a little netbook ("Oooooh, look at the cute little laptop!") is making your regular (lightweight) notebook apps portable. For the majority of consumers, that means they want to run exactly the same e-mail program, the same browser, the same IM program(s)... Realizing that they need to learn to use a completely different interface is going to be quite a shock. It was supposedly pretty much the same with the Ubuntu laptops certain manufacturers have been selling...

      I don't really see the appeal in an ARM netbook. In fact, I wish my phone was x86 - the current standard Windows Mobile smartphone res of 800x480 is just fine for a stripped down XP or even Win7... hell, if they could just get the damned things up to 24 hours (or even 15 or so!) without a recharge, I'd be more than happy. If all you're interested in is ARM and long battery life, get a smartphone and a foldable bluetooth keyboard. Otherwise, get an x86-based netbook and be satisfied with the currently available 10 hours of battery life...

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Lennie (16154)

        I guess this is why this has such appeal to Linux-users. These devices do just that, run a Linux-distribution on a smaller device, the same way like they run on the bigger desktop-machines.

      • by Haeleth (414428)

        The whole point of a little netbook ("Oooooh, look at the cute little laptop!") is making your regular (lightweight) notebook apps portable. For the majority of consumers, that means they want to run exactly the same e-mail program, the same browser, the same IM program(s)...

        For a significant number of people, that boils down to Firefox plus one of the numerous popular webmail providers and web-based chat clients. Sounds like a market to me ...

  • A Big Up Yours (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:14AM (#29074507)
    Basically a big Up Yours to Intel and Microsoft.
    • by ipX (197591)
      Also a push into a potentially massive market -- almost-disposable commodity components running Linux. If they can pull it off without summoning teh wrath of steveb they will look like an innovator and at least strengthen their brand. But they might cut themselves out of the margin, I can't imagine these would sell for much (not likely to be the next iPod in terms of revenue).
    • Re:A Big Up Yours (Score:5, Informative)

      by shutdown -p now (807394) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @06:26AM (#29075095) Journal

      If ARM-based netbooks become popular, you will see an ARM port of Win7 in a few months, with a thorough porting guide for applications, tools to check for potential problems, etc (most cross-architecture quirks were already ironed out when x64 and especially Itanium support were introduced).

      People kinda miss the fact that most applications are just a recompile away from a different architecture, so long as OS is the same - and not just FOSS code. Yes, you cannot do the recompilation/porting yourself, so there is some disadvantage, but you can be sure that, if there's market, all products that are still being actively developed will be ported.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by gsnedders (928327)

        The quirks were worked out long before that: Windows NT until 4.0 supported x86, Alpha, MIPS, and PowerPC. 2000 (i.e., NT 5.0) supported Alpha until as late as after RC1.

        Yet only one of these four architectures ever had decent support for Office: x86. (There was a single release of Office for the others including Word 6.0 and Excel 5.0, both 32-bit, and PowerPoint 4.0, as 16-bit.) Why? Office, especially PowerPoint and Access, both apparently contain a lot of x86 Assembly.

        The other architectures died becaus

  • Finally (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Andtalath (1074376) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:28AM (#29074557)
    Actual netbooks will come. All current netbooks are small laptops, this is something else which is better.
  • Test baloons? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by achten (1032738)
    Do not know if it is due to the reporter or the strategy itself.
    In an effort to expand its Linux offerings, Dell is researching new netbook-type devices and will soon offer netbook Linux OS upgrades, a company official said on Wednesday.
    It ends with
    The company is also researching Google's Chrome for use in netbooks.
    Makes netbooks-are-atom-and-smartbooks-are-ARM distinction.
    However
    Dell couldn't say whether it would ultimately offer a smartbook.
    Maybe just floating of test baloons.
  • by cheros (223479) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @03:54AM (#29074665)

    Like it or loath it, Apple has seriously shaken up the mobile phone industry, and got away with something nobody else ever managed: taking a big slice of the carrier's cake on top.

    If Appe brings out a sensible iTablet that actually works and is smart enough to work with the laser keyboard [vkb-support.com] (the Bluetooth version does proper HID support) I cannot see that fail, and it will probably nuke the market Dell is looking at.

    The tablet in itself goes into markets at present taken by ebook stuff like the Kindle, and with a proper remote keyboard it hits the portable market - why take a whole system if it's that portable.

    So I'd wait a bit - let's see what Apple is up to. I hope I'm right - it's about time for such a device.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Remember that Asus achieved a large success in the netbook market by releasing the eee before everyone else got their act together. If Dell could do the same, they could gain another reasonably large untapped market
  • Stockholm syndrome (Score:3, Interesting)

    by xororand (860319) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @04:38AM (#29074825)

    It's interesting how some people are quick to declare portable ARM computers a failure because it won't run their favorite (proprietary) x86 programs.
    That's the Stockholm Syndrome, only with software instead of human kidnappers.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Lennie (16154)

      First of all, these devices have some limited capabilities, that means their is a certain set/type of programs you'd expect them to run, specifically mostly a browser, an e-mail program, some light Office work maybe.

      And pretty much all applications in Debian (and soon Ubuntu) are able to run on ARM/Linux. Only other thing you might want is Flash on these devices to possible watch some video's in webpages.

      And their has been an ARM-build of Flash for years (look at Nokia N810 for example).

  • Yes, but... (Score:5, Funny)

    by damburger (981828) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @04:44AM (#29074847)
    ...does it run RISC OS?
  • by bgarcia (33222) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @06:01AM (#29075029) Homepage Journal
    This is where Chrome OS [blogspot.com] will help a great deal.

    Where most people will be scared of trying linux, they'll trust it when it has the Google brand. Where many people might be confused by an OS that looks mostly like Windows but where everything is just different enough to be confusing, they'll probably understand the concept of "Chrome OS is just a browser & nothing else". The remaining question is if ARM + Chrome OS will drive prices down low enough that people will be willing to forego the flexibility & familiarity of a regular Windows laptop.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Lennie (16154)

      Actually, I think most people don't know what Chrome is, they don't associate it with a browser (yet).

  • by TeknoHog (164938) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @06:37AM (#29075151) Homepage Journal

    I'm afraid it will be something weaker and smaller than current netbooks. A toy computer, compared to the real computers that run Windows on x86, like God intended.

    The point is, why can't we have a regularly sized laptop with a sensible processor like ARM?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by 4D6963 (933028)

      Or ARM desktops, I mean, why the fuck not? Make a tiny machine (think G4 Cube type box), powerful enough for most desktop stuff, with a low power consumption, and I'm sure you could get lots of people/businesses/schools interested.

      Good way for them to buy/replace a whole bunch of desktop machines for cheap, that eat up less power/emit less heat and noise and don't take much room. The time has come for us to have dirt cheap tiny machines.

  • by FudRucker (866063) on Saturday August 15, 2009 @09:15AM (#29075577)
    in a laptop or netbook if it means longer battery life, I dont use laptops netbooks for CPU/GPU intensive things, mostly web surfing & email, IM, and occasional typing of documents in OpenOffice on Linux and since Linux already supports arm the switch to that architecture would be seamless...

Vax Vobiscum

Working...