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From a fellow ranter

Lots of Ultra-Portable Eee PC Alternatives are emerging!!!

Beside the incredible Eee PC there are a few competitors poping about. Lets see what they have to offer shall we? Most of which are available only in Europe were the Eee PC was a big hit.
1) Elonex One (aka GeCube Genie), £99

The One is an attractive little unit that weighs in at 900g. Elonex says it’s designed to be kid-proof in that it’s shock resistant, has no moving parts and is very reliable. The main components are housed behind the 7-inch 800×480-pixel display. You get a 300MHz LNX Code 8 Mobile CPU — no, we’ve never heard of it either — 128MB of DDR2 memory and 1GB of flash memory. An enhanced version of the laptop, called the One Plus, ships with 256MB of RAM and 2GB of storage.

802.11b/g Wi-Fi is standard, as is wired 10/100 Ethernet, two USB2.0 ports, built-in speakers, and the keyboard’s removable so you can use the One like a tablet PC. The display isn’t touch-sensitive, so you’ll have to use a ‘mouse emulator’ — aka nipple — round the back. The whole thing runs on the Linux Linos 2.6.21 operating system, which comes with a variety of productivity, media and education software.

The One is never going to be the fastest computer in the world, and we’re sceptical that it’ll be without its problems, but you really can’t go wrong for £99. It’s available in pink, green, silver, white or black, and will be released in July 2008. Pre-order yours from the Elonex Web site now for a £10 deposit.

2) Packard Bell EasyNote XS (aka VIA Nanobook), £399

Just 230x171x29mm and it weighs 950g. It uses a 7-inch display with an 800×480-pixel native resolution, a 1.2GHz VIA C7-M CPU, 1GB of RAM and a 30GB 2.5-inch hard drive, which puts the 1GB or 2GB models in the Eee or Elonex One to shame.

It’s disappointing, then, that it costs a relatively hefty £399. The fact it uses Windows is no excuse — the Dell Vostro uses Vista and costs £200 less. Still, it’s the only 7-inch uber-portable that comes with a decent amount of storage right off the shelf.

3) MSI Wind, £225

If there’s one laptop that could seriously end the Eee’s reign, it’s the MSI Wind. We believe it could be the perfect blend of portability and usability, due to the fact it’s slightly larger than an Eee PC, with a bigger keyboard and a choice of screen sizes. – Cnet UK

Eight- and 10-inch versions are available, as are Silverthorne CPUs ranging from 1GHz to 1.5GHz. You even get a choice of hard drive types: there are solid-state models for anyone prone to dropping things, and 2.5-inch models for anyone who wants to store lots of multimedia files.

Best of all, the entry-level Wind is set to cost just €299 (£225), or €699 (£530) for the high-end model. Like all good uber-portables, it’s available in a variety of colours including blue, silver and pink.

4) Dell Vostro 1400, £233

You’re probably wondering what the hell the Dell Vostro is doing in this list. It’s big, comparatively heavy and it’s, er, a Dell. But let’s not lose focus here, people. It costs a measly £233 — less than you pay for an Eee PC — and it’ll spank the backside off the rest of these wannabEees in performance terms.

The Vostro range is available in a variety of form factors, the smallest of which has a 14-inch display and a chassis weighing 2.5kg. Okay, so it isn’t especially portable, but it does have the advantage of a full-size keyboard and a screen you don’t need ophthalmic surgery to read. – Cnet UK

The basic package includes a 1.86GHz Celeron M CPU, 1GB of DDR2 memory, a 120GB hard drive, Intel GMA X3100 graphics, a 1,280×800-pixel display and the luxury of all luxuries: an 8x DVD rewriter!

802.11b/g Wi-Fi comes as standard, and you can customise it to hell and back to eke even more performance out of it. That’s probably just as well, since it uses Windows Vista Home Premium edition. ‘Downgrading’ to Windows XP Professional will set you back an extra £30. Dell also offers a 15.4-inch Vostro 1000 series laptop for £210 plus the cost of shipping, which is based on AMD processors.5) Asus Eee PC 900, £300

The Eee PC 900 is the bigger, badder version of the original Eee PC 701. Announced officially at CeBIT 2008, this comes with an 8.9-inch widescreen display, an

1,024×600-pixel resolution, and up to 12GB of solid-state memory. It may be released later this year.

6) OLPC XO-1 (aka One Laptop Per Child)

Finally, we should mention the XO-1, formerly the ‘$100 laptop’, which is designed as part of a charitable project for children in developing nations. As the concept has been kicking around for a few years, it’s arguably the inspiration for the Eee. It’s not currently on sale to the public, but last year’s Give One Get One programme meant for £200, you could keep one and they’d send the other to a starving-but-surprisingly-IT-capable child. Hopefully the offer will be back soon. – Cnet UK

The OLPC is undoubtedly one of the weirdest-looking contraptions known to man. It has a rotating 7-inch 1,200×900-pixel screen, runs off an AMD Geode LX-700 CPU,
256MB of super-slow 133MHz RAM, and has 1GB of flash memory, which you can add to via an SD card slot under the screen.

Its quirky ear-like aerials work in conjunction with its 802.11s wireless card to create a mesh network, which means you can piggyback off another XO-1 to share its Internet connection if you’re not quite within range.

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