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Asus targets niche market for new Eee PC

,----[ Quote ]
| Yu said that in previous Eee PC models, about 70 percent of the units sold
| were based on Linux. He added that the price of the Windows operating system
| did not trigger the difference between the new 12-Gb and 20-Gb variants,
| meaning it was not true that lesser storage capacity was used to offset the
| price of the Windows software. He said that it was Microsoft’s policy to
| include Windows Home only in the 12-Gb version.


So the explanation about price difference no longer holds water.

First look at Asus Eee PC 900

,----[ Quote ]
| The Eee PC 700 was a viable solution partly because of its lower price
| (P17,000) but the bigger storage capacity and larger memory Eee PC 900 costs
| P25,000 (both the 12GB Windows and 20GB Linux versions). For some, it may be
| too expensive already since many full-size laptops are already priced at the
| same range.


Video on page, with Linux only.

Asus Eee PC 900 set to square off against HP Mini-Note PC

,----[ Quote ]
| Indeed, the free nature of Linux and the associated applications should have
| offset the additional cost the extra 8GB of storage on the Linux Eee 900, not
| to mention the additional cost of a Windows XP license and copy of Microsoft
| Works (the “productivity” software included as standard on the XP Eee 900).
| In addition, when it comes to RAM, both models now sport 1GB instead of the
| original 512MB of memory – another welcome boost for power and performance.


Days ago:

Microsoft U-turn to stop Linux dominating ultra low cost PCs

,----[ Quote ]
| By offering Windows XP Home Edition at bargain prices, Microsoft hopes to
| secure its place in the ULPC market and reduce the use of Linux, according to
| an official at one PC maker, who asked not to be identified because he was
| not authorised to discuss the programme.


Microsoft to limit capabilities of cheap laptops

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| Microsoft plans to offer PC makers steep discounts on Windows XP Home Edition
| to encourage them to use that OS instead of Linux on ultra low-cost PCs
| (ULPCs). To be eligible, however, the PC vendors that make ULPCs must limit
| screen sizes to 10.2 inches and hard drives to 80G bytes, and they cannot
| offer touch-screen PCs.
| The program is outlined in confidential documents that Microsoft sent to PC
| makers last month, and which were obtained by IDG News Service. The goal
| apparently is to limit the hardware capabilities of ULPCs so that they don't
| eat into the market for mainstream PCs running Windows Vista, something both
| Microsoft and the PC vendors would want to avoid.
| [...]
| Microsoft notes that the OSes under consideration for the devices include
| Windows and Linux. Some PC makers have expressed a preference for Linux
| because it helps them keep down the cost of the devices.
| [...]
| By offering Windows XP Home Edition at bargain prices, Microsoft hopes to
| secure its place in the ULPC market and reduce the use of Linux, according to
| an official at one PC maker, who asked not to be identified because he was
| not authorized to discuss the program.
| "[Low-cost PC makers] have made some good inroads with open-source, and
| Microsoft wants to put a stop to it," the official said.
| The official did not seem opposed to the program. It should stimulate more
| competition between Windows and Linux in the ULPC market, and it could
| invigorate sales because consumers who want an easy-to-use PC are likely to
| prefer Windows, the official said.


They Criticized Vista. And They Should Know.

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| Act 1: In 2005, Microsoft plans to say that only PCs that are properly
| equipped to handle the heavy graphics demands of Vista are “Vista Ready.”
| Act 2: In early 2006, Microsoft decides to drop the graphics-related hardware
| requirement in order to avoid hurting Windows XP sales on low-end machines
| while Vista is readied. (A customer could reasonably conclude that Microsoft
| is saying, Buy Now, Upgrade Later.) A semantic adjustment is made: Instead of
| saying that a PC is “Vista Ready,” which might convey the idea that, well, it
| is ready to run Vista, a PC will be described as “Vista Capable,” which
| supposedly signals that no promises are made about which version of Vista
| will actually work. * * *
| The decision to drop the original hardware requirements is accompanied by
| considerable internal protest. The minimum hardware configuration was set so
| low that “even a piece of junk will qualify,” Anantha Kancherla, a Microsoft
| program manager, said in an internal e-mail message among those recently
| unsealed, adding, “It will be a complete tragedy if we allowed it.” * *
| Act 3: In 2007, Vista is released in multiple versions, including “Home
| Basic,” which lacks Vista’s distinctive graphics. This placed Microsoft’s
| partners in an embarrassing position. Dell, which gave Microsoft a postmortem
| report that was also included among court documents, dryly
| remarked: “Customers did not understand what ‘Capable’ meant and expected
| more than could/would be delivered.” * *



Microsoft knew of Vista shortcoming prior to release


Microsoft dropped Vista hardware spec to raise Intel profits


Microsoft 'Caves' To Intel


Has Vista lost all credibility?

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