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Jerry Shen, chief executive officer of Asustek Computer, has pre-announced that his company would install Microsoft’s next-generation Windows 7 operating system onto the company’s Eee PCs in mid-2009. Apparently, the company has no plans to utilize Windows Vista for its popular line of netbooks. But there is a question whether Windows 7 will be available in mid-2009 and whether Eee PC will be capable of running it.

“We don’t plan on putting Vista on any of the Eee PCs. I think in the future, in the second half of next year, we will put Windows 7 on Eee PCs. For now it will be Linux and XP and then Windows 7 and not Vista,” Mr. Shen said in an interview with Laptomag web-site.

Microsoft Windows Vista operating system (OS) demands powerful hardware to work efficiently, it is unlikely that Windows 7 will have lower system requirements, which is why the claim of Asus’ CEO seems to be surprising, as Eee PCs are usually based on low-end microprocessors and do not feature high-performance graphics core. Currently Asus Eee PC systems feature low-end Intel Celeron M or single-core Intel Atom processors and the chief exec did not outline intentions to put something with radically higher performance inside.

According to the most recent rumours, the software giant plans to unveil its Windows 7 OS on the 3rd of June, 2009, which is inline with claims of Bill Gates made earlier this year, but is about half a year earlier than Microsoft publicly stated.

Perhaps, Microsoft is developing a special version of Windows 7 specifically for entry-level personal computers that will eventually substitute Windows XP Home Edition on the market of ultra low-cost personal computers. If this assumption is correct, then new Asus Eee PCs with touch-screens, will be able to take advantage of touch-based functionality of Windows 7.

“Some of the models will have this [touch-sensitive] function next year, but not all the models. The touch function has its advantage but also some disadvantages. The machine will have to be thicker if it has touch[-screen] and we want to have slim machines still,” said Mr. Shen.

Tags: ASUS, Eee, Windows, Microsoft

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