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Asus Takes Another Stab at Revolutionizing Netbook Market

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 4 years ago | from the betting-on-the-design-team dept.

Portables 162

Perhaps most well known for their netbook innovations with the Eee PC, Asus is at it again with their latest rollout at CeBIT Germany. The "Waveface Light," a new concept laptop, can be used as a conventional laptop or converted to a tablet by removing the keyboard and opening it to a completely flat position. Sounds like either a stroke of genius or a "small widget broke and now it's worthless" design issue.

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Indeed. (0)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374602)

This is definitely a good idea, but I think what should really be focused on is making netbooks more gaming friendly. Since (based on people I know and have talked to) netbooks tend to be used mostly while traveling or while watching TV, being able to game on them would instantly increase their appeal. I'm not talking about Crysis or anything here, but it would be nice to not be stuck with pre-2002 games due to low power CPUs (Intel Atom) and integrated graphics (Intel GMA). I know that nVidia has some stuff on the way that will help out a lot, but still...being able to play modern games with the graphics turned down on a netbook would be awesome.

I just posted an article about the topic of gaming on netbooks earlier today. Read on if you are interested in the subject: http://livingwithanerd.com/gaming-on-a-netbook/ [livingwithanerd.com] /end shameless self plug

Re:Indeed. (2, Insightful)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374650)

Umm, get a $399 ION netbook problem solved?

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374738)

The ION is a good step in the right direction, but (in my opinion) it is still a bit lacking. Don't get me wrong, it's a vast improvement on GMA, but it's still just one step. From what I've seen though, the ION 2 is going to be a big improvement. I haven't looked it up but are any of the ION 2-equipped netbooks available to purchase yet?

Re:Indeed. (2, Insightful)

Dishevel (1105119) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375192)

The problem is that net books can game. They can play old low powered games. New games are by nature designed to push limits on desktops. Netbooks by nature are not going to be able to run these games. Some laptops may be able to run some of the newest stuff at lower resolutions and with some eye candy turned down. Netbooks are minimalist by nature. Move on.

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375322)

Like I said, I'm not looking to play something like Bioshock 2 or Modern Warfare 2 on there...I just want something like Civ 4 on Medium settings to run at a playable pace. I know netbooks aren't designed for heavy gaming, but being able to play a game of Civ IV or logging on to WoW and keep things playable and not-ugly would be nice...at least, if for no other reason other than travel and as a cheap "guest" machine at a LAN.

Re:Indeed. (3, Insightful)

qoncept (599709) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374848)

Right now an engineer at Intel is slapping his forehead and saying, out loud, "Why didn't I think of that? We should have been trying to make faster chips that use less power all along!"

Re:Indeed. (2, Insightful)

EdZ (755139) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374994)

So, you don't actually want a netbook (a cheap, low powered laptop for surfing the web), you just want a regular small laptop? Buy a regular small laptop then.

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375066)

No, I want a laptop with a 9" or 10" screen that can play semi-modern games (Civilization IV being a good example) at lower to medium settings without running at 5 frames per second.

What, in your opinion, defines something as a small laptop or a netbook? Can you point me to a 9" machine and say "that's a small laptop" and then a different 9" machine and say "that's a netbook"?

Re:Indeed. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31375408)

You're missing the point of netbooks. Obligatory car analogy; do you buy a motorcycle (because it's portable) and then bemoan the fact that you can't carry four people on it? No, you get a damn car. Similarly, you don't buy a tiny netbook with a 1.6ghz low powered single core, 1gb of ram and integrated video, and then absurdly expect that it would or should be capable of gaming. Want portable gaming? Buy an alienware. That other poster was right, you're an absolute twit for thinking Intel simply didn't think to make their chips more powerful whilst still drawing the same power.

For the record, as far as I'm concerned, the netbook/laptop distinction is that netbooks have an Atom or ARM CPU (or AMD's offering, once they release it) and are no more than 11 inches. If a clamshell-style portable computer doesn't meet both of those conditions, it's a laptop.

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375560)

You're missing the point of netbooks. Obligatory car analogy; do you buy a motorcycle (because it's portable) and then bemoan the fact that you can't carry four people on it?

Of course not.

No, you get a damn car. Similarly, you don't buy a tiny netbook with a 1.6ghz low powered single core, 1gb of ram and integrated video, and then absurdly expect that it would or should be capable of gaming. Want portable gaming? Buy an alienware.

I'm not upset that older netbooks can't do it, I just want a little more focus placed on it in the future. Look at the performance difference between an original EEE PC and the netbooks that are out on the market now...the difference is huge, with only a couple of years seperating them. I'm simply looking for enough of a performance bump so that I can do simple gaming without having to take a full-size laptop with me. Again, we aren't talking about Crysis with full AA here...we're talking about something like Civ IV being playable on medium. Do you think it's ludicrous to want my $400-500 modern machine to be able to run a game that is nearly 5 years old at HALF of what that game is capable of displaying?

That other poster was right, you're an absolute twit for thinking Intel simply didn't think to make their chips more powerful whilst still drawing the same power.

Again, I never said they didn't do it...I said they should do it in the future now that technology has caught up to the size. Thanks for the insult though, I appreciate it.

For the record, as far as I'm concerned, the netbook/laptop distinction is that netbooks have an Atom or ARM CPU (or AMD's offering, once they release it) and are no more than 11 inches. If a clamshell-style portable computer doesn't meet both of those conditions, it's a laptop.

So once the ION 2 systems become widely available...would you still consider that a netbook, despite their ability to (supposedly) play modern games?

Re:Indeed. (2, Funny)

mcmonkey (96054) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375946)

Wow. There's a gamer who really loves Civ IV.

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375972)

I keep using it as an example because the gameplay is perfectly suited for something like a netbook...travel, or parked on a couch watching TV.

But yeah...I do love Civ IV :-)

Re:Indeed. (1)

RobertinXinyang (1001181) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375160)

I think you are missing the point of netbooks. What you want would add to the quality of the internal parts (cost), would use more power (battery life), and would need a large screen (Size).

What I, and the netbook users I know, are looking for, and using, is something that will have the battery life to make it through several classes (battery life) and is reasonably cheap (cost), light, and doesn't take up much space on the desk (size). I think you would be better served by a regular, or power user oriented, computer or laptop.

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375270)

Not really...I have a relatively up to date desktop gaming machine, I'm just looking for something small to leave next to my couch so when we stream netflix/watch hockey or boxing I can still play modern games. Like I said, I'm not looking to play Crysis at max, nor am I expecting to play something at crazy high resolution at 16x AA...I just want to be able to play something like Civ 4 at medium settings...the nVidia ION is close to providing what I want (and in my price range), and the ION 2 looks like it's going to be even better.

I don't really want a full-size or even a small (14") laptop...I'm looking for a small machine (10", 11" absolute max) that I can easily see over and use for some light gaming. Hell, my Mini 9 can play things like Deus Ex and even Guild Wars (Guild Wars requires just about everything be pushed all the way down, but it is quite playable)...again, considering the ION, it can't cost that much more to make this happen. Who knows, there are already likely netbooks out there that can do what I want...I just haven't looked in the past year since I got my Mini 9 because I'm not going to buy one for another 6 months or so.

Re:Indeed. (1)

rishistar (662278) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375348)

Alienware do a nice looking netbook. That should be able to game!

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375422)

You're talking about the M11x, yeah? It does look awesome and certainly has far more performance than I'm looking for, but I can't justify spending that much money on such a small system...~$800 would be a great "full-size" laptop :/ I know that's sort of like throwing your post back at you, sorry about that...

Re:Indeed. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375616)

Small, Fast, Cheap, pick two.

You want all three, that is just not a realistic option.

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375634)

Small, somewhat cheap, and slightly fast.

See? Cut two of them down, and suddenly all three are possible.

Re:Indeed. (1)

Dare nMc (468959) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375788)

For me, the ideal device would be about a 17" light weight touch screen tablet PC, that can stand alone as a netbook; but then become more a dumb display/hard disk at my desk. That way you could have a nice useable display you carry around that functions, but have a fast Processor/keyboard/memory you slap on, and plug it in to game with.

Basically a dedicated GB Ethernet port connecting my "desktop Processor" to this device.
I don't game, but I go out and gather data from a bunch of machines, quickly look that the data is real, maybe tweak a few things if needed, then go back to my desk and crunch data for 2 hours (because my laptop is somewhat slow) But not worth the hassle of transferring Gigs of data to a PC for this. Also all these apps are expensive licenses, so I must have them available to travel, but want them on a faster CPU to crunch.

Similar, I lug my Laptop home every night to provide emergency tech support, and VPN for off hours meetings, lug it in to meeting rooms to take notes... I need all my data from daily use, but a 1 Ghz atom would provide the functioning I need when away from the desk, but a 2.2Ghz core Duo doesn't cut it at my desk.

Re:Indeed. (1)

EchaniDrgn (1039374) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375840)

Or you could get the software developers to design their software better?

I play World of Warcraft on my Netbook all the time. Not too bad when you're running dailies that include mostly flights back and forth.

Re:Indeed. (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375902)

Yeah...Blizzard (like Valve) is good about keeping the minimum requirements on their games low, but making the visuals scale quite well. The difference in visuals with World of Warcraft turned all the way down and turned all the way up is HUGE, , but all the way down requires very little computing power while all the way up still doesn't require anything unreasonable.

Out of curiosity, what netbook are you running it on and what are the specs?

You can't really revolutionise the netbook market (3, Insightful)

CdBee (742846) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374610)

Anything sufficiently different to be radical (in either a good or bad way) won't be considered a netbook.

Re:You can't really revolutionise (well..) (1)

padrepio (1702766) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374642)

In response I can see Apple introducing: the iSheet....

Re:You can't really revolutionise (well..) (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374726)

In response I can see Apple introducing: the iSheet....

Casper would claim prior art.

. . . not that that ever stopped Apple or the USPTO before.

Re:You can't really revolutionise (well..) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374746)

Just think about the wonderful puns we'll get from that product.

Re:You can't really revolutionise (well..) (1)

bobdotorg (598873) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374778)

In response I can see Apple introducing: the iSheet....

Or possibly the EeePad.

iSheet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374990)

Don't worry we can clean that up with an iPad.

Re:You can't really revolutionise (well..) (1)

treeves (963993) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375926)

No, iSheet you not.

Re:You can't really revolutionise the netbook mark (1)

rrohbeck (944847) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375964)

Right now I read and browse mostly on an eeePC 1005. If they made a slim, really low power netbook with an e-Ink display on the outside of the lid I'd buy one right away.
Keep it closed and you have an e-Ink based reader. Open it and you have a full fledged netbook.

Interesting... (2, Interesting)

wernercd (837757) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374626)

Thing looks remarkable. If it works as advertised, the main thing I'd want to know is what operating system runs on it?

Re:Interesting... (4, Insightful)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374742)

First it will run with a completely user-unfriendly Linux distribution (Linpus, I'm looking at you!), then people will complain about it, Asus will increase the specs and the price massively and will only sell the Win7 edition. The few who bought the original edition will tell everybody that they tried Linux and that it's complete crap without trying some *real* distro, and websites around the world will laud the new win7 edition as much better, and a proof that Linux is not fit for the desktop. Apple will then show off their new product (the iBalls) which will have less feature than anything else, will be so locked it won't be of any use whatsoever, but will have shiny glossy metal, and everyone will announce the death of the Wave Light Devices.

been there, done that

Re:Interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374770)

It would be funny, if it wasn't so true...

Re:Interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374996)

...but will have shiny glossy metal,...

Read in Homer Simpson voice...

Oooo! Shiney glossy metal! I'll TAKE IT!

Re:Interesting... (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375052)

First it will run with a completely user-unfriendly Linux distribution

My daughter's EEEpc runs Ubuntu just fine.

Re:Interesting... (1)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375228)

yeah, but did it have Ubuntu on it by default? (As a sidenote, I'm running Mint on my AA1 and very happy with it. The "original" distro was Linpus, which is one of the most aptly named distros I know of. The whole association with sickness and disease is very fitting.)

Re:Interesting... (1)

element-o.p. (939033) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375434)

but did it have Ubuntu on it by default?

My Mini9 did. Granted, it was a slightly modified version of Ubuntu (a few packages were missing from the package manager), but it worked well enough that it was several months before I decided to install the full-blown version of 9.10. Even then, I doubt that any users that don't already have a favorite Linux distro would miss the things (openSSH server, for one) that lead me to install the full version of Ubuntu.

Re:Interesting... (4, Informative)

Nemyst (1383049) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375230)

The original EEE PC ran Xandros, which was arguably a very bad decision...

Re:Interesting... (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375448)

and websites around the world will laud the new win7 edition as much better, and a proof that Linux is not fit for the desktop.

The media, tech-oriented or otherwise, does not report that Windows is more user-friendly than Linux because they tried it and didn't like it... Oh no. They would happily report the exact opposite if some nice compelling, fluff-filled press release said it was so.

Marketing and advertising exists to bend people into believing the narrative you want them to believe. If you're a huge company, and you have to sell a newer, more expensive product, you'll latch onto any changed detail you can and try to mold it into a compelling reason for people to look at your product again, or even re-buy one.

Make no mistake, the company could be discontinuing the most amazing flying car, and replacing it with a Pinto, and they'd have the press gushing that their new car uses half as much gas, and is much more easier to drive (than flying) and their customers kept reporting that they missed getting stuck in traffic, and requested that "feature" once again...

OLPC in Uruguay (1)

aBaldrich (1692238) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374884)

They [ceibal.edu.uy] already use a tablet-laptop (image [stealthcomputer.com] ) and every child in every school has one.
Yeah, old news, is so exciting.

Just remove the pc! (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374632)

The "Waveface Light," a new concept laptop can be used as a conventional laptop or converted to a tablet by removing the pc and opening it to a completely flat position.

run that by me again

Re:Just remove the pc! (1)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374718)

I think they meant removing the keyboard.

Re:Just remove the pc! (4, Informative)

Haxamanish (1564673) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374734)

TFA reads: remove the keyboard.
From the pictures it even seems the screen can be rolled up when the keyboard has been removed.

Re:Just remove the pc! (1)

Chad Birch (1222564) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375882)

Only the first two pictures are relevant to the Waveface Light, which is the netbook that opens into a tablet. The next two are for the Waveface Ultra, some sort of flexible phone.

But yes, it should be "by removing the keyboard", not "by removing the PC". What does that even mean?

It is flexible. Bendable to be precise. (3, Informative)

denzacar (181829) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374972)

Re:It is flexible. Bendable to be precise. (1)

textstring (924171) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375392)

I know this is all vaporware design shit but part of that first video for the future-watch says it has gesture control. This is totally cool. If you had a smart watch that covered the lower wrist couldn't you use sensors to read tendons? I might actually wear a watch if I could type on it like an old school chord-board.

Always Innovating (2, Interesting)

FlyingBishop (1293238) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374670)

So they've ripped off the Always Innovating Tablet [alwaysinnovating.com] and are calling it their idea?

And somehow I don't think the Always Innovating tablet was the first.

Re:Always Innovating (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374758)

Tablet laptops have been around since like 2003:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compaq_TC1000

I had one of those several years ago. You could remove the keyboard and play Simcity 4 with the digitizer pen. The handwriting recognition was killer for taking notes, something resistive and capacitive screens can't do since they're both finger-activated.

Re:Always Innovating (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374760)

Except that Asus's doesn't look like a piece of shit?

Re:Always Innovating (1)

b0bby (201198) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374868)

No, because the big difference is that the keyboard on this thing was sitting on top of the continuation of the screen, so when you remove it your screen real estate just doubled. Of course, it's a design concept anyway, and until affordable flexible displays are available it will remain so.

Re:Always Innovating (1)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374892)

Umm, did you look at the pictures of this new "tablet/netbook"? Always Innovating has a nice-looking detachable screen, agreed, but the WaveFace is something... completely different.

The screen covers both the top and bottom halves of the clamshell, and it's one continuous flexible screen. If you want to use it as a tablet, you lay it out flat then lift out the keyboard, resulting in a tablet that's more than double the size of Always Innovating's offering (which is, after all, just a netbook you can unplug the screen from).

The WaveFace, on the downside, looks like it'll be incredibly fragile, and there's not as much room for storage, battery, and, well, you know, useful bits. But it is extraordinarily different.

Their other item is a flexible long-narrow screen that is like a stretched-out iPhone, but it can be wrapped around your wrist to use like a watch, or rolled out flat to use like an iPod Touch, or folded in half to use like a phone. Again, looks fragile to the point of silly, but Asus certainly can't be accused of being boring.

Innovating doesnt mean what we think it does (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374968)

I saw this with the Lenovo U1 and thought this was the only way I would buy a tablet.
I also saw on Liliputing aroudnd the same time, an asian sub 200$ version, block and ugly but definitely the same tablet/netbook combo.

So 'new concept', 'innnovating' is basically Slashdottese for "our editors dont bother to do research".

Nice to know that things never change around here.

BTW, 'Shown above is the Waveface Light, a concept laptop design' means its a concept or vapourware.

The U1 is out this spring.

Light is this years new 'open' it seems
Skylight is the U1 and Waveface Light is the ASUS one.

Dont get me wrong, a convertible tablet slash netbook (or laptop like the U1) is the way to go but innovative?
No.

Re:Always Innovating (1)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375238)

I don't think your looking hard enough, it's quite a bit different then that "always innovating" tablet.

Re:Always Innovating (1)

Nemyst (1383049) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375302)

Oh give me a break. That looks like a ThinkPad from 1995. That Waveface project has a detachable keyboard that covers a flexible touchscreen panel. You can roll it up if you want! From the tech demos, it also seems much larger than 8.9".

Re:Always Innovating (1)

Mr. DOS (1276020) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375304)

AFAIK, the Compaq TC1000 [wikipedia.org] (followed by the HP Compaq TC1100 [wikipedia.org] ) was the first.

Re:Always Innovating (1)

Idbar (1034346) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375380)

I would gladly clarify this for you, but the link provided in TFA, is a big mess, and I have no clue what belongs to what. There are some interesting concepts on the pictures though. But really, I didn't understand, they even have some pictures of their tablet T91 I think.

Re:Always Innovating (1)

Nukenin (646365) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375552)

So they've ripped off the Always Innovating Tablet [alwaysinnovating.com] and are calling it their idea?

No. Read the article or just look at the pretty pictures.

Operating system (1)

mederbil (1756400) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374854)

I think what would revolutionize the netbook the most is a better OS. Nothing too bulky like Windows, too simple like Xandros or too complicated for entry users like Eebuntu. A clean and useful Linux operating system that comes pre-installed would be revolutionary for netbooks.

Re:Operating system (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31374880)

What would be revolutionary about installing an OS on netbooks that no one wants?

Re:Operating system (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374882)

It's a shame that, even after being stripped down with vLite, Windows 7 is still so huge. It runs REALLY REALLY smoothly on netbooks (even lower powered ones), but the amount of storage space it commands is just too much.

Re:Operating system (1)

nxtw (866177) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374984)

Storage isn't a problem when netbooks come with 2.5" SATA disks.

Re:Operating system (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375164)

Then they are not decent netbooks. If it has a moving part I do not want it. Nothing is as durable cheaply nor as battery efficient as a netbook with no moving parts.

Re:Operating system (1)

nxtw (866177) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375210)

Then they are not decent netbooks. If it has a moving part I do not want it. Nothing is as durable cheaply nor as battery efficient as a netbook with no moving parts.

Your preferences differ from the millions who purchase netbooks with fans and hard disks.

Re:Operating system (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375354)

I agree with the parent poster...I LOVE that my netbook has no moving parts and runs silently.

Re:Operating system (1)

element-o.p. (939033) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375486)

There are millions who don't know the difference, other than price. If my wife saw two identical-looking machines, one with an SSD drive, the other with a 2.5" SATA drive, she wouldn't even consider the difference in durability or battery life. She would complain about both things later, but at purchase time, she would go with the less expensive option (BTDT).

Re:Operating system (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375704)

There are millions who don't know the difference, other than price.

And plenty of us that do. Personally, all other things being equal, I'd prefer an SSD on a netbook, but all other things aren't equal.

IMO, though, a netbook is more defined by having a clamshell form factor, being ultraportable (a combination of screen size of about 12" or less, being thinner than most laptops, and low weight) and having battery life for 6+ hours of continuous operation than by the particular technology used to acheive those goals.

Re:Operating system (1)

nxtw (866177) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375762)

There are millions who don't know the difference,

I'm aware of the difference, and I chose a much bigger and faster hard disk.

Re:Operating system (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375532)

Those are the folks that don't know any better. They often buy garbage.

Re:Operating system (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375180)

Nowadays sure, but those of us with older ones (like a Dell Mini 9) are a bit limited in our storage options. I'm not paying 1/3rd of what I paid for the machine just to upgrade the storage space to a reasonable level, know what I mean?

I know that purchasing any netbook at this point would make this problem moot, but there are still netbooks out there that are fully functional with a lot of life left in them where storage is an expensive commodity. Being a Mini 9 owner is where my perspective comes from...it would be nice to get something newer, but my money is needed elsewhere at the moment -_-;;

Re:Operating system (1)

element-o.p. (939033) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375522)

How much storage does yours have? My Mini-9 came with 32G of storage, of which I am currently using 52%, even after copying a bunch of crap to it. 'Course, I don't play the games you've mentioned above...

Re:Operating system (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375726)

It came with the 8 gig SSD -_-;; It was a gift though...so..you know...free is good :-)

I don't need the increased storage for the games (I have an 8 gig Class 6 SDHC in there, which holds whatever I'm currently playing), I need the increased storage because there is only about a gig of free space even after cutting down Windows 7 with vLite. Even just a 16 gig SSD would be more than enough, I just haven't done it.

Re:Operating system (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375544)

I have one of those, buy a freaking SDHC card.

Re:Operating system (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375696)

I have an 8 gig Class 6 SDHC in there currently, and it's been great.

My SSD, however, is also an 8 gig. The cost of upgrading the SSD is about equal to upgrading to a larger SDHC. And before you ask, it was a gift, which is why I didn't get it with more internal storage in the first place.

Re:Operating system (1)

element-o.p. (939033) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375456)

No thanks. I'll stick with Ubuntu on my Mini-9 and SSD drive. I have more storage than I need, no moving parts, a battery that lasts for-frigging-ever and no heads to impact the platters if I drop the netbook while it's on.

Re:Operating system (1)

nxtw (866177) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374940)

Nothing too bulky like Windows, too simple like Xandros or too complicated for entry users like Eebuntu.

Windows XP is lightweight compared to a modern Gnome or KDE system.

Re:Operating system (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375172)

LXDE solves that problem.

Re:Operating system (1)

element-o.p. (939033) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375548)

BlackBox is really lightweight. It's what I run on my dinosaur 700MHz Celeron desktop at home (yeah, I pretty much always use a laptop or netbook any more). OTOH, I wouldn't give it to someone who's never used Linux before.

Re:Operating system (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375734)

Windows XP with no apps is a little lightweight compared to KDE bundled with countless KDE apps in total disc space.

eComStation... (1)

lwriemen (763666) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375086)

...if they'd ever release v2.

Re:Operating system (2, Funny)

mrclisdue (1321513) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375240)

I believe this has been attempted many times in the past, but when the users fire up their netbooks a few times only to find that everything still *just works*, and that there's no malware, there are no viruses, no unpatched or delay-patched exploits, they freak and ask for their *windows* back.

Being users finally "in control" of their systems only speeds up their return to lemminghood.

The revolution happened long ago - it's the self-professed Windows experts who've become immovable.

cheers,

Full Size (1)

Entropy98 (1340659) | more than 4 years ago | (#31374894)

I think they'd sell a lot more if they made these full size.

Theres no reason you can't put an atom chip in a laptop with a 14 inch screen and a real keyboard.

I suspect the only reason this isn't happening is because Intel would be cannibalizing their "real" laptop sales.

A step in the right direction, but... (1)

Whuffo (1043790) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375032)

I'm waiting for the "convertible" laptop / netbook that has the electronics package behind the screen and all that's in the keyboard part is the keyboard and maybe an optical drive or two. With the two pieces together it'd be just like what we have now - or you could detach the screen and use it as a fully featured tablet. Best of both worlds - but there's some engineering to do before this can become a real product.

Re:A step in the right direction, but... (1)

lkcl (517947) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375084)

http://alwaysinnovating.com/ [alwaysinnovating.com] touchbook. removable keyboard has an extra battery, just to make the $100 pricetag for that extra bit worthwhile.

What is the Price Point? (1)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375060)

My question is what is the price point for this machine?

Re:What is the Price Point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31375178)

My question is what is the price point for this machine?

The price of this concept machine in concept dollars is whatever you choose to imagine it to be. Why are people talking about this thing as if it's real enough to have a price?

!new (2, Informative)

lkcl (517947) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375064)

it's an innovative "new" concept, that has been shipping for several months, in the form of the http://alwaysinnovating.com/ [alwaysinnovating.com] touchbook

Re:!new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31375110)

The innovation is that Asus's version doesn't look like a piece of shit.

Concept? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31375100)

Does "concept" laptop mean one that doesn't exist, or is there more to it than that?

Re:Concept? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375216)

It's like a concept car, meaning it looks cool but is probably just a mockup. Plus like a concept car it will never make it into production most likely.

Re:Concept? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31375268)

So like vaporware, but less substantial?

Re:Concept? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375554)

Exactly.

Re:Concept? (1)

_argonauta (945845) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375442)

I would assume that it being the CeBIT it is either a working prototype or a mock-up

Image of the open laptop: http://bit.ly/bjURNV [bit.ly]

Re:Concept? (1)

pushing-robot (1037830) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375718)

Definitely a mock-up. ASUS has no idea when it might become a real product. You can hear it straight from them. [youtube.com]

Design priming function (1)

vikingpower (768921) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375352)

Any time a hardware maker let design come before function, wonderful things came out, that wrote history. Computers: look at Apple. Cars: look at Saab. Aircraft: look at the Concorde. Go Asus go !

Re:Design priming function (2, Insightful)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375568)

My sarcasmometer must be on the fritz. Did you mean this to be funny?

Flexible (1)

wonkavader (605434) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375398)

OK, a couple of things in the article and the youtube videos referenced in comments above imply (or directly state) that at least one of these objects has a flexible screen.

Anybody seen anything flex here? In the video it's all static and under glass so that people can't touch it, and the photos are completely static of course.

Are they touting a new tech or did I miss a big announcement of commonly available flexible displays?

Re:Flexible (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375578)

It's a concept, the things they are showing are mockups. Do you think concept cars actually work?

Re:Flexible (1)

Nemyst (1383049) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375936)

Unless they're utterly lying, you can see in one of the videos given by this poster [slashdot.org] a wrist-attached smartphone that's both shown on the wrist and deployed flat. I'm unsure whether they have the actual technology figured out or if this is still at the concept stage, but it is most likely that at the very least they plan on having a flexible and somehow "lockable" smartphone available some time in the future (I say lockable because it should stay attached to your wrist once there, so it might be possible to control the flexibility of the device so it becomes rigid when wrapped on your wrist).

I do know that OLED screens are flexible; with properly designed components it may be possible to create such a device.

concept (1)

pbjones (315127) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375470)

don't you hate the phrase 'design concept', almost as much as people who believe that they will look like the production version, if they ever get to production.

Not impressed by this but (1)

EnsilZah (575600) | more than 4 years ago | (#31375742)

I really don't see the point of detachable screen, detachable keyboard thing.
The swivel lid tablet laptops seem to work fine if you just want the screen and If weight is the issue I wouldn't want to leave the keyboard at home and then regret it later.

What did impress me was the DR-900 reader [youtube.com] .
I've been waiting for a paperback replacement for a while and this seems like it for me.
The specs I found are 10,000 pages turns, 1024 x 768 resolution, 4GB internal storage plus an SD slot,PDF/TXT/ePUB/HTML.
Now if they can only sell it for $200 or less.

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