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Linux-powered mini-laptop gets larger display

Mar 5, 2008 — by Jonathan Angel — from the LinuxDevices Archive

Asus announced an upgraded version of its “Eee” mini-laptop with a larger 8.9-inch screen. The Eee PC 900 also doubles memory to 1GB, boosts the screen resolution, increases solid-state storage to 12GB — and raises the price from $400 to $600.

(Click here for a larger view of the Eee PC 900)


The original Eee PC 4G
(Click image for further information)

Since the original two-pound Eee PC 4G went on sale in November, the popular device has sold more than 350,000 units, according to Asus. The original model featured a 7-inch WVGA screen, and a customized version of Xandros Linux pre-installed on a 4GB solid state drive (SSD).

The original Eee was advertised as “Windows XP compatible,” and later shipped with Windows XP in some markets. The new model comes with an extra-cost option to have XP installed from the get-go.

The large bezel around the Eee's screen led observers to conclude that a bigger display was planned, and Asus has now provided exactly that. The Eee PC 900 offers a 8.9-inch display with WSVGA (1024 x 600) resolution, up from the 4G's 800 x 480 resolution. It fits into the same 8.8 x 6.5-inch footprint as before, but appears to be slightly thicker, with a slightly larger trackpad.

Mass storage comes in the form of an 8GB SSD — a capacity since offered on the original Eee as well. A 12GB SSD is also available, apparently on the new model only.

Like the 4G the Eee PC 900 has a 900MHz Celeron M processor, but RAM has been boosted from 512MB to 1GB. Like the original, the Eee PC 900 offers a 10/100 Ethernet port, stereo speakers, a webcam, and 802.11b/g wireless networking.

Storage can be added to the device via its SD expansion slot. Some versions of the earlier Eee PC also featured an available internal mini PCI-Express slot, but Asus has not confirmed this as being available in the Eee PC 900.

Also unconfirmed by Asus is the battery life and weight of the Eee PC 900. The original Eee weighs two pounds and is rated for three to four hours of cordless operation.

Features and specifications for the Eee PC 900 include:

  • Processor — Intel Celeron M clocked at 900 MHz
  • Memory — 1GB of RAM
  • Storage — 8GB or 12GB SSD
  • Display — 8.9-inch color TFT with 1024 x 600 resolution
  • Camera — webcam mounted above the screen
  • Audio — dual speakers for stereo sound
  • Networking:
    • 10/100 Ethernet
    • 802.11b/g wireless LAN
  • Other I/O:
    • 3 x USB
    • VGA port for external monitor
  • Expansion:
    • SD card reader
    • Memory stick reader
    • mini PCI-express slot (unconfirmed)

Availability

The Eee PC 900 will be available this summer, according to Asus. A Linux-based but “Windows-ready” configuration will cost 400 Euros (approximately $600); the cost of the optional version with preinstalled Windows XP was not cited.


 
This article was originally published on LinuxDevices.com and has been donated to the open source community by QuinStreet Inc. Please visit LinuxToday.com for up-to-date news and articles about Linux and open source.



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