Asus Sort of Announces Eee PC 1218

ASUS DESIGN has found a unique way of introducing a new Eee PC netbook, by announcing that it’s won the 2010 international red dot design award.

The new netbook from Asustek is the Eee PC 1218 and they have reason to mention it winning a design aware- unlike a lot of netbooks, they’ve designed it with all ports on the back so that the sides are port-free (and clutter free). The casing/frame looks to be made out of aluminum with a one-piece bottom.

We know very little else about it, other than what was mentioned on the AsusDesign.com website:

The ultra-slim EeePC1218 series delivers an optimal balance of usability & portability. A unique internal layout allows for a full array of ports to be positioned at the rear of the device, this means that the front and sides of the device are completely smooth making it easy to carry and visually uncluttered. The visual simplicity continues inside with the one piece aluminum palm rest and keyboard frame, a sliding cover on the webcam assures privacy.

From what can be seen on the Asus Design website, it looks like it has the following:
– 3x USB ports
– 1x Ethernet
– 1x VGA (yes VGA)
– Normal Audio I/O (headphones/microphone)
– Possibly an HDMI port next to the VGA port, even though this doesn’t make sense
– Secure Digital Card slot on the read left side. Given that they claim all ports are on the back, this is technically still the case as you could consider the SD slot a slot.

Read/View: AsusDesign.com
via liliputing

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ASUS Eee PC Seashell 1005PR at Amazon

ASUS Eee PC Seashell 1005PR Netbook The ASUS Eee PC 1005PR “Seashell” netbook has popped up at Amazon.com with a pre-order price of $399.99. Unfortunately there is no release date – I’ve heard late April or early May but don’t take that as 100% accurate. ASUS is claiming up to 11 hours of battery life with just a 6-cell battery, thanks to their ASUS Syper Hybrid Engine. Keep in mind the 6-cell battery is high-density, and the Atom N450 CPU helps. It’ll be interesting to see the actual real-world battery life.

It’s an impressive little netbook for the price and size – in addition to the long battery life, it has a 10.1-inch HD/WXGA LED-backlit display running at a resolution of 1366×768, and capable of HD graphics thanks to a Broadcom Crystal HD Accelerator. It’s packing a Chiclet-style keyboard.

Asus has included 500GB of free online/cloud storage in addition to the 250GB SATA hard drive. I’m not a big fan of Windows 7 Starter being loaded on it by default, but it is $399.99.

Other specifications:
* Intel single-core Atom N450 – 1.66GHz, 512KB L2 Cache
* 10.1-inch “Color-Shine” display w/1366×768 WXGA resolution
* Accelerated HD graphics thanks to a Broadcom Crystal HD Accelerator
* 1GB DDR2 RAM (2 GB Maximum)
* 802.11 b/g/n wireless with Bluetooth
* 250 GB Serial ATA 5400 rpm hard drive.
* Multi-touch trackpad

Link: ASUS Eee PC 1005PR at Amazon.com

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Acer Aspire AS1410-2285 – Best Value in a Shipping Netbook?

Acer Aspire AS1410 If you are looking for the best value in a shipping netbook, today is your day. For around $400 plus shipping, you can get the Acer Aspire AS1410-2285 shipped from Amazon, and if you’re willing to spend extra, you could have it on Friday.

What does $399.99 plus shipping get you? Quite a bit actually, it will get a dual-core CPU with Intel’s 4500MHD graphics, an HDMI port, Windows 7 Premium, and an 11.6-inch display.

Full specifications: Acer Aspire AS1410-2285 (Black casing)
OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium
CPU: 1.2GHz Intel Celeron SU2300 Dual-Core CULV CPU
RAM: 2GB DDR2 667MHz
HDD: 160GB SATA Hard Drive
Networking: Intel WiFi Link 1000 802.11a/b/g/Draft-N
Graphics: Intel 4500MHD Graphics (GMA)
Display: 11.6″ WXGA LED-Backlit Display
Battery: 6-cell Li-ion Battery (4400 mAh), up to 6 hours according to Acer
Weight: 3 pounds/1.4 kg

In addition to the above, it’s coming with three USB 2.0 ports, an HDMI port, and a Multi-gesture touchpad.

Looking at Acer’s other Windows 7 listings at Amazon, it looks like HDMI out will finally be standard. Most of the Acers should be expandable to 4GB of RAM.

While this is a Celeron, expect non-Celeron-based netbooks with dual-core CPUs to be out in the next few weeks. Amazon is showing the Acer Aspire AS1810T-8679 with a Core 2 Duo SU7300, up to 8 hours of battery life, and 4GB of RAM shipping in November.

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Windows 7 Selling Like Crazy in the UK

Windows 7 Microsoft’s Windows 7 is selling like crazy in the UK – the Windows 7 Home Premium Upgrade Family Pack for XP or Vista is selling particularly well (constantly jumping up and down on the best seller list), as is the Windows 7 Ultimate Upgrade Edition for XP or Vista users and TG Daily is reporting that Amazon claims to have become the biggest pre-order product of all time in the UK.

That’s some pretty heady stuff, as it apparently beat out the Harry Potter books in the UK, including Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows which was their biggest pre-order to date. They claim that just over the past three months alone, only the latest Dan Brown book has beat out Windows 7 pre-orders and that it’s surprising when you look at it as a product versus product (software versus book) competition.

Link: TG Daily

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Microsoft Windows 7, the Starter Edition

Windows 7 Channel Insider has an article up discussing the pros and cons of Microsoft’s plans as far as netbooks and the upcoming Windows 7. Specifically, they discuss the Windows 7 Starter Edition, which is going to be a stripped-down version of the “regular” Windows 7 versions/distributions. One of the worst aspects of the Starter Edition will be the fact that it only allows for three applications to be run concurrently.

There will also be some advanced features missing, which I don’t think will be as important (for most) as the three application limit, but CI makes a good case for the Windows 7 Starter Edition versus the Windows XP Home edition that ships with many current netbooks:

The big question is, Will customers be willing to pay for an OS that is arguably less capable than Windows XP Home edition, which is currently found on the majority of netbook computers? Netbooks have proved to be a challenge for Microsoft—the company has had to make special exceptions to get netbook vendors to put a Microsoft OS on those systems, the end result being a step backward down to Windows XP.

They point out what many of us have experienced – where Vista ran poorly on ultraportable netbooks/sub-notebooks, Windows 7 (beta) runs much better and provides for a better overall experience, even when compared to the performance of XP Home (especially in the networking area).

They do make a crucial point that Microsoft can’t ignore: If Microsoft (and the manufacturers who will be working on what editions are shipped with various netbook models) botch it and start pushing out netbooks with the Starter Edition, Apple could very well gain quite a bit with the release of their own netbook. Chances are high that any netbook shipping from Apple is going to ship with a version of Mac OS X that resembles what you see with the MacBook and with the Mac mini (and it wouldn’t surprise me if it’s the same OS X that ships on their consumer products). Apple is very proud of the fact that they’ve managed to scale OS X down to the iPhone, and you also have a huge unofficial (highly unofficial) group of netbook users who have worked out how to install OS X on just about every type of netbook you can imagine. OS X runs well on these devices. Apple also makes use (or has in the past) of the fact that they basically have two versions of OS X they ship (three if you count the iPhone) – the consumer/client version, and the server version. They don’t have a Home or a Home Premium or a Professional or a Business or an Ultimate version.

Microsoft takes a huge risk when trying to push a version of Windows 7 that would restrict you to three applications, and Channel Insider mentions the advertising benefits that Apple would reap:

How will Apple respond to the launch of Windows 7 Starter Edition? I can picture the cute commercials now. Imagine a Mac commercial where the PC guy is shown juggling a couple of balls, the Mac Guy walks in juggling dozens of balls and throws one ball in the PC Guy’s direction, and the PC Guy drops everything

The ads would write themselves, as many American consumers have not experienced a “Starter” edition of Microsoft Windows, and would be extremely upset to find out after the fact that their netbooks with Windows 7 can’t do as much as their netbooks with Windows XP. Retailers would not be happy with Microsoft or the manufacturers, as they would bear the brunt of consumer anger and confusion.

Read: Channel Insider

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