[clug] Re: Asus Eee PC first impressions

Tom Worthington Tom.Worthington at tomw.net.au
Sun Dec 9 23:45:15 GMT 2007

At 10:05 AM 10/12/2007, Robert Edwards wrote:
>... Finally went in on Friday night and they had mine sitting out 
>the back waiting for me ...

I had the same experience at the Sydney Myer store. My Eee PC was 
actually being held in the games department, not computers, which 
caused further confusion. The sales staff seemed a bit annoyed at the 
fuss the Eee PC created and perhaps were worried that commissions for 
selling $500 PCs are going to be much less than on $2,000 ones.

>The thing crashed (locked up hard) _five_ times on Friday night! ...

I haven't had it lock up at all so far. My first impressions from a 
consumer's point of view are positive: 

>... The fan d... not that noticeable ...

I found the fan noise made the built in microphone unusable.

>There is a "mouse button" with the touchpad. Looks like a single
>button, but is, in fact, two buttons ...

I found the button(s) too stiff to press easily.

>The Xandos desktop is OK for a novice. ...

The tabbed arrangement of applications was okay.

>Disappointingly, no bluetooth for connectivity to a mobile phone. ...

The WiFi works okay, but I couldn't get it to remember a key. Each 
time I turned the machine on I have to reenter the key.

> From the web, some are expanding the RAM from 512M to 2G. Need to void
>the warranty to get to the RAM slot. I haven't done that - yet. ...

I opened the panel on the back and found next to the RAM card a PCI 
Express Mini Card slot. Apparently this is omitted from future 
versions. What would make sense instead for low cost laptops, would 
be some internal USB bays, which could be used with flash drives, 
wireless 3G and Bluetooth devices.

>In summary, for A$500, not a bad little package, but definitely not 
>a coders machine. ...

Yes. Looks good for a first attempt. Its main virtue, along with the 
Zombu, will be to popularize Linux and network based computers for 
the general public and business 

Zombu have recently released a more conventional looking "Green" 
Linux laptop to complement their thin client desktop 
Also there is the Everex Green PC sold by Walmart for US$199 
<http://www.tomw.net.au/blog/2007/11/everex-green-pc.html>. I expect 
every PC maker now has a project to configure a cut down, cut price 
Linux computer. The mobile phone companies may do well giving these 
away bundled with a 3G wireless broadband contract.

We will likely reach the tipping point in 2008, with $500 Linux 
computers considered "normal" for home and business use. Anyone who 
wants to spend thousands of dollars on a computer with Microsoft 
Windows, a large hard disk, DVD or other unnecessary options, will be 
considered at best a bit odd, if not anti-social or a criminal 

Tom Worthington FACS HLM tom.worthington at tomw.net.au Ph: 0419 496150
Director, Tomw Communications Pty Ltd            ABN: 17 088 714 309
PO Box 13, Belconnen ACT 2617                      http://www.tomw.net.au/
Adjunct Senior Lecturer, ANU  

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