A mere 4 months after the US debut of the first cheap Linux UMPC, the EeePC 701, we’re about to be swarmed by the second wave of new contenders vying for your dollars.
The EeePC 900 was officially announced this Tuesday by ASUS. This new EeePC model is expected to ship in Q2 and will improve upon the EeePC’s number one complaint: the 7″ screen. The EeePC 900 will ship with a 8.9″ screen while gaining only a couple of ounces and tenths of an inch in size. Otherwise many of the EeePC 900’s specs remain remarkably close to that of the EeePC 701 we all know and love, but with a higher $599 price tag (this is based on European pricing).
Much less is known about the HP 2133. Actually all we officially have are some slick looking pictures. Rumors however point towards this one coming in at $499, at least on the low end. HP is also rumored to be ordering 2 million of these guys from OEMs, which would seem to explain the $499 price tag.
Of note with both machines is that Microsoft still currently plans to stop selling Windows XP to OEMs and Retail customers June 30, 2008. This means that either company wishing to sell pre-loaded XP machines alongside Linux versions will need to ship with Windows Vista. This means at least a 1 Ghz CPU and 20 GB of HD all around. It will remain to be seen how the SSD-based EeePC 900 will face this potential problem.
The CLUMPC fight is just beginning. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Dell and others soon enter this growing arena as more and more consumers look for secondary laptops that don’t need to be powerhouses (or run Windows).
What about the current EeePC owners out there, are you going to be looking to upgrade already?