Asus Company is going to start manufacturing ultra low-cost notebooks first demonstrated at Computex 2007 that are considered extremely promising solutions. According to Digitimes, this September already the company is going to start selling its first Eee PC 701 series notebooks prices between $199 and $369 depending on the features and region. Note that they are planning to supply about 20,000 units next month into USA, Taiwan, China and Europe, with the $349-model being the biggest part of the supply. However, as the production increases, more affordable models should become widely available also. In 2007 they intend to ship 500,000 units of this series, and in 2008 the production should hit 3-5 mln units.
In addition to securing orders from the mentioned countries, Asustek has also landed orders for its Eee PCs from a number of education organizations, insurance companies and emerging markets, the sources noted.
Eee PC 701 is a compact notebook in plastic casing with a 7-inch screen diagonal and 800x480 resolution (although the unit is slightly larger than the screen to accommodate the speakers). It is based on Intel mobile chipset and CPU (supposedly it will be integrated Intel 910 chipset and 900MHz Intel Celeron-M ULV 353 CPU). It is equipped with 512MB of DDR2-400 memory and 2-16GB of flash memory instead of the hard drive. There will be three USB ports, audio jacks and VGA Out for communication with the rest of the world. As for the network interfaces, there will be a 10/100Mbps port and wireless WiFi (802.11b/g) interface, as well as a 56K modem. The device will be equipped with a card-reader and a 0.3Mpixel web-cam.
Besides ultra-mobility, Eee PC will also have other advantages, such as Shock Proof Design, wireless connectivity and ease of use.
Eee PC 701 will ship with a 4-cell NiMH battery that should last for about 3-4 hours of non-stop operation. The notebook will be 225 x 165 x 21 (35) mm big and will weigh only 800-900g. It will come with Linux OS preinstalled by default, but Asus claims that it will also be Windows OS compatible. By the way, the manufacturer positions this solution not as a notebook, but as a more mobile addition to a notebook you may already have, or as a portable device with Internet access.