Tiny Asus Eee Runs Linux & Windows for $399

The Asus Eee (701P PC is a shrunken laptop in a sturdy case - but the screen is surprisingly small.

Ultra-portable notebooks are almost always expensive, while budget notebooks are too often large and heavy. Asus’ tiny Eee notebook, however, serves as a counter example. The OEM has kept the price down by using a 7" screen, minimal memory and storage - and installing Linux rather than Windows. That means that the PC 701 model with 512 MB of RAM and a 4 GB solid-state drive is only $400 and the 256 MB/2 GB PC 700 will retail for $300 when it comes out in January. That’s an ultra-portable PC for not much more than the cost of a video-capable media player.

You may see lower prices from educational suppliers, and different brands, too. We looked at the RM miniBook, which is the PC 701 for the school market. Asus expects the majority of demand for the to come from the educational sector and developing markets. And rather than presenting a bare-bone Linux system, Asus offers a set of applications and a friendly interface based on Xandros that hides the Linux underpinnings almost completely. But you can switch to a "full desktop" mode where you can install your own applications; and with OpenOffice, Google Documents, Firefox and Skype to start, the has the potential to be a very portable option for any PC user. If you don’t want Linux, Asus provides instructions for installing Windows XP and will sell a version of the with XP pre-installed next year.

The beauty of using a PC rather than a smartphone is real Internet access (and a big enough screen to see what you’re doing).

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  • Anonymous
    Wow.. another Indonesian,
    Yup I think it's a good system..hope the price is reasonable when it reach here..
  • Anonymous
    I'm still dumbfounded by how many people buy into these things. Can you not buy a laptop from HP or Dell for $400-500 with better specs in almost all areas AND with Windows XP already installed?
  • zyberwoof
    @ jephph1

    You can and you can't. "Specs" does not give enough information. If by "specs" you mean CPU, RAM, Screen Size, etc... then yes, you can. But if you take into account that this is a laptop and for some size and weight is far more important than those other "Specs" then no you cannot buy something like this from Dell or HP for the same price. Just so you know, this thing easily fits into my girlfriend's purse.

    I own one of these, so I can speak from first hand experience. The Eee should not be considered as a replacement for your main computer. However, if you would like a secondary device that is good for travel, or great for a student to take notes then the Eee is great.

    Also, if anyone reading this goes ahead and gets an Eee, I would recommend you go to http://wiki.eeeuser.com/ for information of getting your Eee setup how you would like.
  • Anonymous
    Yeah, that's the only reason I could think of to get one. I guess I just don't see the point in spending just as much to get a laptop that maybe be quite a bit more portable, but that really can't run much because of it's poor specs, especially in a year or two when a lot more software will be much too demanding for this specimen.
  • Anonymous
    What is it with you people that put currency in pictures to give an idea on size? You are aware we don't all use whatever the hell that currency is? Geeze, would it kill you to put a freaking ruler in the pic. cm/inches version would be nice. Thanks.
  • Anonymous
    I was under the impression from people in other forums that ASUS is not voiding the warranty for upgrading your ram an sps the most commonly used currency in the world is 6 inches