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Sony Says Eee PC Signals "Race To the Bottom"

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the what-you-mean-we dept.

Portables 393

Alex Dekker writes "Sony's Mike Abary says in an interview, 'If [Asus's Eee PC] starts to do well, we are all in trouble.' Presumably by 'we' he means all the hardware manufacturers who sell over-priced, full-fat laptops. And he's not going to be too pleased when he sees the Linux-powered, sub-$200 Elonex One. Looks like what's bad for Sony may be good for the consumer." The CNet article mentions that a version of the Eee running XP is available in Japan now and will be coming to the US within weeks.

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About dang time... (4, Insightful)

EntropyXP (956792) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601222)

Remember when DELL said they'd create the first sub-$1000 PC and people just laughed at them? I never understand why people pay $2000 for a LAPTOP that can so easily be stolen, dropped or damaged. $200 for a email machine is more of the price range that they should be in.

Re:About dang time... (1)

Stanistani (808333) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601272)

After all, it's an appliance.

Particularly since the eee PC runs on Linux, and has an easy mode by default.

Re:About dang time... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601748)

Easy mode? How weak!
It's unforgivable to play easy mode unless you're an elementary kid, right?

Re:About dang time... (5, Funny)

evilklown (1008863) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601326)

I'm so glad someone finally said one of the key phrases in technology advancement:

Looks like what's bad for Sony may be good for the consumer.

Was that a blog, or an ad for Sony? (4, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601380)

Seriously, did anyone read the whole thing? About two paragraphs are devoted to the whole 'race to the bottom' thing without explaining exactly why Sony thinks this a problem. The rest of the entry just goes on and on about all the cool things Sony sells and how many colors and textures the Vaio comes in.

Re:Was that a blog, or an ad for Sony? (3, Insightful)

UncleTogie (1004853) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601612)

That's Sony for you: All marketing, no brains.

Seriously, does Sony really think we can take pronouncements like this as gospel when their top lawyers can't even listen and answer properly? [blogspot.com]

Re:Was that a blog, or an ad for Sony? (5, Interesting)

electrosoccertux (874415) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601950)

That's Sony for you: All marketing, no brains.
I wouldn't say they have no brains. They consistently make high quality tech products. Blu-ray (despite being DRM crippled) will probably be the next CD. I sure hope it is. They chose to throw their engineering might behind Plasma TVs because, while they cost more, they produce a better picture (too bad the market preferred cheaper LCDs). They produced the first handheld 1080p camcorder, and it's actually high quality. Now anybody can make their own home-pro-snowboarding video. Their Vaio laptops are known, industry wide, for having, hands-down, the best displays-- AKA "X-Bright". They managed to create a great, cheap to produce for, entertainment system (PS1) and managed to duplicate that success with the PS2-- this thing has so many games I'm probably going to go buy one, even though PS3 has been out for [a while]. Now that Blu-Ray has won, I bet a lot of people will be picking up PS3s instead of other players when they get around to purchasing one.

All I'm saying is I see Sony as a superb tech producer with simply misguided management.

Re:Was that a blog, or an ad for Sony? (5, Insightful)

WindowlessView (703773) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602218)

They consistently make high quality tech products. Blu-ray (despite being DRM crippled) will probably be the next CD. I sure hope it is.

I have no dog in the disk format wars but can Blu-ray's success really be chalked up to engineering? There are stories aplenty about how Sony paid hundreds of millions of dollars to the movie studios to get them to switch. This seems more like marketing (or something more nefarious) than technical excellence and doesn't support your argument very well.

No, that is reporters for you (5, Insightful)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602024)

The entire article is nothing more then the an out of context quote. Cnet heard something they think might sound nicely controversial, plunks it in in an article that seemingly has no goal and watches the ad revenue stream in when as predicted slashdot picks it up, makes an entire story out of one quote and runs rampant with it.

Personally I think this is all overblown, offcourse Sony who operates at the high end for laptops will call a move for the cheapest laptop a race to the bottom and warn that if this catches on "better watch out", but you note that completly absent from this article is any condemnation of this, neither do they warn consumers about the Eee. He might as well be meaning that those companies who think they can only sell super expensive ones better watch out.

Oh wait, I am doing it wrong ain't I. Sony is the evil!

Re:Was that a blog, or an ad for Sony? (4, Funny)

The Great Pretender (975978) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601880)

And when the race reaches the bottom they'll find Sony there, lounging around in big piles of their failed products, sipping Mojitos.

Re:About dang time... (1)

Altus (1034) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601830)


generally I agree with you, but I use my laptop as a desktop replacement, its my primary machine, so I spend a bit more money on it than other people do.

Still, I can see plenty of use for a $200 machine for email and web browsing. In the end I might change my buying habits if the market keeps going this way. Go with a powerful desktop and a cheep laptop instead of trying to get it all in one machine.

Re:About dang time... (3, Interesting)

Amouth (879122) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602028)

i have had the pleasure of using an EEE PC - they are nice.. but leave alot out.. give me one with a nice 1024x768 (atleast) screen make the SSD removeable and replace able with a 1.8in hdd (hell sell them with not SSD's too) and add internal blue tooth.. then we can start.. sure it wouldn't be 300$ at that point.. but it wouldn't be that much more - hell i would love to buy just the shell.. given it has a decent screen and a standard 1.8in drive connection.

personaly i got a dell d420 with extended battery.. i couldn't be happier.. sure it is only a Core Duo ULV at 1.06ghz.. but it is dual core. and lasts 6+ hours on battery with wifi and bt on and the screen at a nice level.. it is only alittle heavyier than the EEE PC with a lot more power and storage and over all isvery nice.. personaly i use it as a desktop replace ment.. and when i got it the base price was >2k (agree not exactly worth it) but after mixing cupons i got it for 1200$ - very well worth it..

I agree that i am sick of laptops that can't be used in the lap.. the EEE PC is cute.. and i might get one for my kid in a few years (once i have the kid that is) but untill they get alittle better specs on it.. it isn't going to kill off any good true lap usable laptops

Have you been to a Walmart the last 2 years? (1)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602080)

There have been lots of laptops between $450-650 there lately.

The people who spend $2000 do so purely because they want to. I do too, because it's a usually a better machine and one that I use all the time and with the numerous storage options these days, most notably the external drives, - a Desktop replacement.

The same way a chef may buy a set of knives that cost several hundred dollars instead of a set that cost $50 - because it's worth it to them. The better knives may cut marginally better at first but the real secret is that they hold their edge a lot longer.

But yes, $2000 for an email appliance is overkill.

Re:About dang time... (1)

Sloppy (14984) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602200)

I don't remember laughing at the idea of a personal computer costing less than $1000. I remember the early 1980s, when $200-$600 was the norm for a roughly-current-tech personal computer.

Re:About dang time... (1)

netruner (588721) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602258)

I don't understand why people need to buy a computer for email, IM'ing and downloading music. My cell phone will do that - and I don't need to be in a place where I have to buy $5 cups of coffee to do it either.

I am currently shopping for a laptop - it needs to play and burn DVDs, be able to run Unreal Tournament III, Open Office (as well as any software I can buy at a brick and mortar store) and have a screen big enough for me to do meaningful work or surfing (the cell phone browser is great for mobile websites, but that's it). I doubt these machines will fit the bill.

Burn Wintel, burn! (-1, Flamebait)

gnutoo (1154137) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601266)

The fat to be cut is the OS. Sorry Microsoft, your days have been numbered a long time.

Next thing you know, there will be competition in the "permium" chipset market too. That's another free software strength. Sorry Intel, you will have to make chipsets that deliver more than Winblows and heat.

There's enough flame left from OS/2, BeOS, BBCPC, ARM, Alpha and others to consume the entire Wintel world. Good riddance to 35% profit margins and performance that sucks. Hello to better computing for everyone.

Re:Burn Wintel, burn! (3, Interesting)

Calinous (985536) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601372)

Funny you say that in a thread about an Intel powered laptop.
      By the way, OS/2 is officially dead.

Not very funny if you think about it. (1)

gnutoo (1154137) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601786)

Funny you say that in a thread about an Intel powered laptop.

Yes, it would be nice if Asus had chosen a chipset that gave 5 to 10 hours of battery life instead of 1 to 3. The problem of non free hardware remains if you want Flash and other non free software. The custom version of Xandros used does not give Asus or customers the complete freedom but it's a step in the right direction.

Re:Burn Wintel, burn! (2, Insightful)

the_B0fh (208483) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601508)

Unfortunately, the x86 architecture and instruction set sucks.

The CNET article (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601268)

January 24, 2008 9:49 AM PST
Eee PC with Windows launches in Japan, U.S. is next
Posted by Erica Ogg | Post a comment

Asus launched the first Windows version of its popular Eee PC in Japan on Thursday, according to a report in The Register.

Called the Eee PC 4G-X, it will come pre-loaded with Windows XP Home Edition. It has the same specs as the original 4G model with Linux introduced last fall: 4GB of storage, Intel Celeron processor, 512MB of RAM, 802.11 b/g Wi-Fi, and more.

Eee PC

The U.S. version of the Eee PC, pictured above, uses a Linux-based operating system. Next month we'll see the Windows XP version.
(Credit: Erica Ogg/CNET News.com)

The Japanese launch is good news for potential U.S. buyers of the computer, a cross between an oversized Internet tablet and a notebook, because it means the U.S. version is coming very soon.

Asus originally promised we'd have the Windows version of the tiny Asus Eee PC in December. The Taiwan-based company now says we can expect it in late February or early March. Though the original date came and went, it certainly hasn't stopped customers from ordering the Linux-based version: the company reportedly moved 350,000 units in the first quarter it was available.

I don't think so (1)

level_headed_midwest (888889) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601278)

Sony already sells most of its stuff for more than their competitors and still stay in business, based on brand, design, and such. I don't see how that would change if machines like the Eee become more popular, except that fewer people will pay $2000+ for the TZ and a lot for their UMPCs.

Re:I don't think so (0, Redundant)

Corpuscavernosa (996139) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601418)

I completely agree. I certainly could have gotten an equally powerful laptop for less $ but I chose to get a Mac based on style and well, I just like it. We can leave all OS discussions out, but brand loyalty and especially design drive sales, especially when we're talking about a portable machine that will be seen by the public. You gotta look cool at the coffee shop right?

Re:I don't think so (1)

darthflo (1095225) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601728)

I second the first part of that. Even with limited resources, I chose to buy several Thinkpads during the last years and haven't regretted those decisions once. I could've gone with slow (think OLPC, Eee), low-quality (Acer), toyish (Apple) products for less money each time and enjoyed paying more for fast, light ntoebooks with great keyboards and the build quality of WW2 bunkers. Works for me, why shouldn't it work for others?

On another note, much of Sony's notebooks have been and will continue to be luxurious products. Buying a Sony TZ simply ain't the result of going for the best value, it's either showing off or requiring extreme mobility. I don't like their cramped keyboards and low-res (SXGA+ on a 12" ftw) screens, so I don't buy em.

Re:I don't think so (4, Insightful)

arth1 (260657) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601458)

This is slashdot, so we need a car analogy. And indeed, people continue to buy expensive cars even though most people will buy a cheaper car that fulfills their needs instead of going for the top of the line. The influx of cheaper cars (from Japan, I may add!) didn't kill off the top models, although it relegated them to a niche market.
Similar for laptops -- most people will buy what serves them well, and not splurge on the top models. There's a good market for small, fast /enough/ and affordable laptop computers, and Sony knows this fully well. They have chosen to stick with the upscale market, and shouldn't complain about EEE and similar eating their pie more than Porsche should complain about Nissan eating theirs.

Regards,
--
*Art

Re:I don't think so (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601720)

You touched on a good point. Here on /., computers have to be dirt cheap or they are not good (eg Macs vs bargain basement PC arguments) and software has to be the best or it is not usable (eg Photoshop vs GIMP arguments).

I find it funny that people will pay for high-end stereo equipment and others don't complain you paid too much. And they think nothing of using Sears Craftsman hand tools in lieu of tighter tolerance Snap-on hand tools. Go figure.

Re:I don't think so (1)

Ralph Spoilsport (673134) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601808)

Using car analogies makes the eeePC more like the Tata Nano. I think the eeePC is wonderful, but it doesn't have enough RAM or "drive space" for my needs. The Apple AIR is insanely overpriced, so I'll just wait... my MacBook Pro does just fine...

RS

Re:I don't think so (4, Insightful)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601810)

The influx of cheaper cars (from Japan, I may add!) didn't kill off the top models...

Not yet but American auto manufacturers are on life support. GM used to be huge. Remember the old saying that what's good for GM is good for the country? Probably before your time. As big as GM was in the day and as small as those upstart Japanese car makers were in comparison, there's been quite a turn around. That in an industry that evolves at a glacial pace.

The technology market evolves much faster. The technologies that should scare the bejabbers out of the status quo include:

  • Appliance PC's. Sony has good reason to be scared. So does Dell, HP and Lenovo.
  • Mesh networking. Self-discovering p2p networks that don't need a telecomm or service provider to spring to life. This could potentially be as disruptive to the current internet as the internet was to traditional telecomm in the late 80's.
  • Open Source. When you take an overview of MSFT's approach to OSS, it's hard to mask the unmistakable signs of fear. And MS should be afraid of OSS, the same way Dell should be afraid of EEE PC's.

Re:I don't think so (1)

Beyond_GoodandEvil (769135) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601936)

Not yet but American auto manufacturers are on life support. GM used to be huge.
GM also used to make cars people wanted to buy not just rehashed crap.

When do we get these affordable laptops? (5, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601280)

The EeePC was promised to be around $200.00 and it currently sells for $299.00 most places $399 for the decked out version. nearly TWICE the promised price. all the others come in way WAY over as well.

Why buy a Eee PC when I can get a Dell cheapie of the moment with 12X the power at the same or LESS price. Last one I got was $369.99 on one of their 1 day sales. I can do way more than the eeepc and saved money.

I'm for the race for the bottom if the race is sanely priced. right now it's not.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (4, Insightful)

Calinous (985536) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601426)

Your Dell comes with a 15.4" display, better resolution, better processor, more memory, bigger non-volatile storage, a normal keyboard, and maybe other things.
      And weigh three times as much as the EeePC. There is a market for lower performance, light computers.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601602)

I agree and they should be CHEAPER!

I only want them to meet their promises. they never do. The history of laptops and Tablets is littered with the corpses of light low power devices that failed to sell more than a few thousand and died. People want them when they are low priced. not when they are the same price or more than a more powerful and slightly larger item.

If I want something that is the size of the Eeepc that is cheaper and far better I'll grab a dell latitude C400. Tiny thing that is incredibly useful and can be had for very little.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601794)

The history of laptops and Tablets is littered with the corpses of light low power devices that failed to sell more than a few thousand and died.

Maybe, but the Eee is hardly in that category. The only doubt is how many million units Asus will ship this year.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (4, Insightful)

blackbirdwork (821859) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601796)

And your hard drive will crash if you hit hard your Dell, the SSD of the Eee will not break. (http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x4dhhl_tests-resistance-chocs-chaleur-froi_tech)

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

Calinous (985536) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601998)

The solid state drive in the EeePC will work perfectly even after shocks that will crack the case open

Competition: Apple Air and Thinkpad Subnotebook. (4, Insightful)

gnutoo (1154137) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601968)

But they cost 10x as much and, despite Sony marketing assurances, alligator skin is not what people want a laptop to do. EEE delivers almost everything people care about in a laptop for an order of magnitude less than the competition. The reason it's selling for twice as much as expected is because it's a runaway hit and considered a good deal at $400. Used computers of the same weight sell for twice the price but offer only better screen size and keyboard. If they come with Windows, a used laptop does not offer much performance gain, and some significant performance losses, as well as a the usual Windows migration and software install pains. Good for Asus, EEE sells out as soon as they hit the shelves because people who don't care about GNU/Linux want it.

Re:Competition: Apple Air and Thinkpad Subnotebook (1)

Calinous (985536) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602070)

Hopefully there will be competition and it will decrease the prices to an even lower level. At least I can hope

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602088)

And weigh three times as much as the EeePC. There is a market for lower performance, light computers.

Since when is weight an issue. They already only weigh 3-5 pounds. The problem for me is size. I want something I can fold up and put in my jacket pocket, or otherwise be small. Hell, make me a 15 lb. laptop that (quickly, without a lot of work from me) folds up around my belt and I'll take that.

Devaluation on computers is worse than on cars!!!! (2, Interesting)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601532)

I'd be really interested in an inexpensive laptop, when it truly is inexpensive! Whether you're spending $400 or $500, that extra $100 seems to get you QUITE a bit more in terms of hardware. I have trouble dropping $1000 on a laptop that is only marginally better than an $800 one; but I don't see a problem spending $500 on a laptop that is MUCH better than a $400 one. If you need a cheap laptop, just buy older technology! The devaluation on computers is worse than the devaluation on cars!

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (3, Insightful)

IL-CSIXTY4 (801087) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601604)

The big selling point for the EeePC in my case was the size. It's about the size of a paperback, and weighs the same. I can carry it around the office under my notepad to pull up a browser, email, or SSH session whenever I need it. It's replaced a much more powerful Dell and gave me more productivity.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (5, Funny)

psychodelicacy (1170611) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601764)

And this is the cool thing - it's a boy magnet! I get it out in the pub or Starbucks or wherever, and attract all those furtive glances that my looks alone sadly never procured for me. I even have some guy come up to me in the pub wanting to try out my Eee. So girls, forget the Apple that says "Hi - I like pretty things and ponies!" Get an Eee instead, and men will fall at your feet.

Well, okay geeks will fall at your feet, but in my case that's the required demographic...

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601946)

it's a boy magnet!
So they really are going after Apple's target demographic, huh?

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

gwbennett (988163) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602216)

There are gays on slashdot? Cause we all know there aren't any ladies :(

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

Xzzy (111297) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601906)

I want one for this exact reason as well. Been too busy/lazy to really research it (and/or get my employer to buy me one).. how well does it function as a "portable thin client"?

Can I reinstall it to get rid of the easy mode programs and turn it into a simple portable xterm?

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (2, Informative)

IL-CSIXTY4 (801087) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602150)

I have EeePCLinuxOS on an SD card for a full Linux desktop, but I hardly ever use it. The built-in Xandros has Thunderbird, Firefox, Pidgin, and bash. That's all I need, really. It boots in ~30sec. The built-in SSD shows up as an IDE drive, so you can install whatever you want on it.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (2, Interesting)

Xocet_00 (635069) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602204)

My only major objection to the Eee is the screen resolution. 800x480 is simply too low to be able to comfortably use full-blown internet applications. I'd love to see a slightly bigger WXGA (1280x768) display in there. The current models have pretty wide bezels, so they could 'fit in in', technically, probably at the cost of making the unit a bit thicker so that the support electronics can sit behind the display instead of beside it.

Anyway, once a model comes out with higher screen res, I'm in!

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

magarity (164372) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601650)

Why buy a Eee PC when I can get a Dell cheapie of the moment with 12X the power at the same or LESS price
 
Going through the tsa goon line these days with the "remove your laptop and put it in its own rubbermaid bin" being such a hassle that a little bity laptop that you can whip out of your bag is a great convenience. Plus the thing only adds barely a couple of pounds to said bag. And depending on which airline you have to use the seats are so crammed together that there's no room to open a 15" laptop because when the person in front leans back the screen catches on their seat and bows in half. Subcompacts are definitely worth the tradeoff in performance for frequent travellers, I assure you.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

initdeep (1073290) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602156)

and many of these "frequent travelers" (myself included) need more than a simple email and browse computer and have purchased fully functional 13" size laptops that weigh about 3 pounds and have plenty of processing power.
Myself, I personally went with a Dell m1330 and DID go with the SSD drive as well (and a true SSD drive, not merely some flash memory i might add).
I also have an eee that i use for the munchkins and have no problems with it, and have even carried it around with me "on the town" a few times when i just wanted to be able to do some simple browsing or email while waiting for the misses to finish her shopping.

however, dont think it could replace the need for a full featured computer when professionals travel around.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (4, Insightful)

POPE Mad Mitch (73632) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601872)

Why buy a Eee PC when I can get a Dell cheapie of the moment with 12X the power at the same or LESS price.
Because you, like so many other people, and some of the 'rival' manufacturers miss the point of why this appeals to quite so many people.

Its fairly cheap, sure, but as you point out its not the best value for money on that score.

It is because it is also small, and light, at under one kilogram and smaller and a A4 pad it easily slips into a satchel, or messenger style bag that many people carry around these days, making it much more practical to keep with you than a traditional large heavy laptop.

You can of course buy small sleek laptops with more features, but they tend to cost more, a LOT more.

Its the balance point of price and size and features that makes it so popular, alter any one of those very far and you lose that unique selling point.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601956)

Title of post:

When do we get these affordable laptops?
Excerpts from post:

it currently sells for $299.00

Last one I got was $369.99
We should step back and marvel at just how amazing this is. I'm not trying to make fun of your post... but really when you think about the sheer computing power (and portability) you're getting for <$400, it's amazing. Not that long ago, the idea of a sub-$300 computer would have been ridiculous, much less something that is as small as a book, has a 900 MHz processor, 512 Mb of RAM, etc.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that "affordable" is inherently a moving target. If today we think that $400 is not low enough for an ultra-portable laptop... then probably in 5 years we'll be complaining that our "underpowered" (core2duo) e-book readers are over-priced at $100. There is no "bottom" in this race.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602036)

Why buy a Eee PC when I can get a Dell cheapie of the moment with 12X the power at the same or LESS price.

I can only speak for why I got one (or more accurately, talked my boss into getting me one). I love it because it's tiny, cheap, doesn't have any moving parts (except a fan that kicks in a small part of the time), and ships with Linux preinstalled. That last one is pretty nice - it means that all the hardware buttons are supported perfectly and everything works with zero tweaking. It also means that all the software I need to do my job is either already installed or an easy apt-get away. Note: yeah, I had to add some repositories to its configuration, but if you're the kind of person who needs nmap and PostgreSQL then you should be able to handle that.

But really, why would I want a much larger, more powerful Dell over this solid little laptop? So it can idle faster while I'm in an SSH session? So the animation of loading Firefox looks cooler? Sony's right: they're in a lot of trouble. Now that I've been able to use this Eee PC for a month or so, I have no desire for anything more expensive or theoretically "better". This does everything I want it to and does it well.

By a car analogy, if I'm in the market for a Miata, I don't want an Escalade. Maybe it can do some things better, but if I wanted to do those things, I wouldn't have bought a Miata. Well, I think a lot of people are seeing the Eee PC and realizing that a Miata will get them to work just as well as an Escalade and will look neater doing it.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602140)

I think they should be able to make those prices once they ramp up the volume.

Why buy a Eee PC when I can get a Dell cheapie of the moment with 12X the power at the same or LESS price. Last one I got was $369.99 on one of their 1 day sales. I can do way more than the eeepc and saved money.

As far as I'm concerned, that amount of power really isn't that important. I'd rather have a computer that's a good fit rather than one that has 20x-30x more power than I need, runs hotter than is comfortable (at idle!) and bigger than I need and has features that I won't use. And it's not a Dell. I've never owned a Dell in my life and I'd like to keep it that way.

I'm interested and I'll be looking for it once it is past its early adopter phase.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (1)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602228)

Heh... Let's compare:

Dell: Takes 2 or so minutes to come up.
eeePC: Takes roughly 30-40 seconds.

Dell: Comes with a hard disk, lots of other fragile parts. Drop it while it's running and it's liable to be toast.
eeePC: Comes with a smaller but still very usably sized solid state disk. NO moving parts to really speak of.

Dell: Comes with Vista. You MIGHT get some default apps, but don't bet on it. Bet on buying stuff to make it useful.
eeePC: Comes with Linux. Comes with pretty much everything you need right out of the box.

Dell: Runs warm.
eeePC: Runs cool.

Dell: The price you quoted is a SALE PRICE. Trying to buy that "cheapie" will set you back $500 normally.
eeePC: That's the base price. They've not taken to selling them at anything like a sale price.

All in all, I'd say it was a push. You probably even have software and whatnot that make that Dell
cheapie make sense to buy- for you. The eeePC is an appliance for all intents and purposes and is
really being marketed that way. And you can't seem to get ahold of them because everyone's getting
them in their hands as fast as they can get them.

Now, if you're talking the UMPC space, instead of the laptop space- which is what this device REALLY is...

Comparing the eeePC to the other UMPCs out there, this thing pastes 'em for the large part
because it's cheaper than all but the N800 right at the moment, runs all the same class of software
(Even if you consider the XP configuration- which is actually LESS useful than the Xandros one...)
on similar classes of hardware and is 1/3 the price for the others. If you're needing something
in an UMPC for things, this thing mops up most of the other machines. And, there IS a whole host
of end-user uses for UMPCs that people just aren't taking them up for use because the things
have been too expensive in many ways. There's things that the cheapie Dell just won't do well
with. Things that'd get it trashed (vibration on the HD, for just one example...). Things that
it's actually TOO BIG for.

For a laptop, yes, it's probably still a bit pricey- and very definitely NOT something I'd do
my laptop type computing stuff with as it's VERY underpowered for the things I need from a
full-on laptop. As a UMPC, which is what this really is, it's a bang-up answer like few others.

I'm setting aside budget for one for a couple of uses I've in mind that the other, $1000+ UMPCs
just are too damn expensive for.

Re:When do we get these affordable laptops? (2, Insightful)

pipatron (966506) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602292)

The EeePC was promised to be around $200.00 and it currently sells for $299.00

This is mostly because of the US economy grinding to a halt. I'm pretty sure that it still costs the same in euros/yuan/whatever other currency was initially projected.

Sony, The new Apple... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601292)

You can buy better, but you can't pay more!

People aren't interested in over buying anymore ? (4, Interesting)

trdrstv (986999) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601306)

I know it threatens their business model, but the majority of home users would be fine running a Pentium 3 caliber chip with a DVD burner and a big Hard drive.

Are consumers actually getting to the point where they buy what they need rather than the high end, of what they want?

Imagine if this were to happen to the automotive industry...

Re:People aren't interested in over buying anymore (2, Informative)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601980)

People are easily dazzled and convinced to buy things they don't need.

and it copies design details from Sony (1, Insightful)

realkiwi (23584) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601308)

The Asus is a badly done copy of my Vaio C1XD (My screen is 1024x480 pixels) - seven years old still going strong and great for getting on the internet when away from home (or out on the balcony).

Re:and it copies design details from Sony (2, Insightful)

thisissilly (676875) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601960)

Seeing as your Vaio cost over $2000 brand new (with 64MB of RAM), and this is $300 (with 512MB), I'd say they're allowed to do a few things badly.

Weight issue? (1)

odin84gk (1162545) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601310)

When I look at that laptop, it looks like its going to fall over all of the time. No wonder they won't release it to the public yet.

Overpriced? (1)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601316)

Yes there are lot of expensive computers and it is possible to make computers that cost almost nothing. Then again computers with rock-bottom prices usually lack style, have very little R&D put into them and aren't usually the cutting edge.

You want a good looking computer that peforms well and you can delegate the fixes to the manufacturer? Be ready to pay for it. Anything else and you are doing all the work.

Re:Overpriced? (2, Insightful)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601390)

(MySpace|Facebook) + IM + Firefox doesn't need a $600 USD laptop though.

Re:Overpriced? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601640)

(MySpace + Amazon for condoms to use with the MySpace whores|Facebook) + IM + Firefox doesn't need a $600 USD laptop though.

Fixed that for you.

Re:Overpriced? (1)

qoncept (599709) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601678)

I have no idea what point you were trying to make, but "style" made me laugh. I'm going to go buy an iPhone because of how good I'll look with it.

Same as it ever was. (2, Insightful)

Sick Boy (5293) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601332)

Computing power has been a commodity for a long time now. Companies now have to differentiate and *gasp*! Compete! On product benefits beyond "Windows kind of works on it sometimes." Every industry reaches a plateau at some point, and it's not necessarily a bad thing, for businesses or consumers. Sony still makes decent ultra-portables that actually have some power, which the EEE won't compete with. Apple makes trendy machines with a great caché. It looks bad for the companies that put out crap laptops, like Dell, HP/Compaq and Gateway, but really- will anyone be sad to see them either make better machines or die?

History rears its head (0)

Calinous (985536) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601334)

The EeePC is equipped with storage similar with what was mainstream some 10 years ago, with a processor (600MHz) from 7 years ago, and its 512MB RAM is pretty current (not more than two years ago in the mainstream). Its graphic resolution, unfortunately, is from more than 10 years ago, and is a quarter (by pixels) of what is now current.
      With a bigger display (600 lines instead of 480, and more than 7") I would buy one. For comparation, most of the installation screens in Windows I've seen doesn't fit in 640 lines, the OK, Next, Back, Cancel buttons are out of the visible screen.

But the EeePC is small and cheap (3, Insightful)

walterbyrd (182728) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601598)

That's the difference between the EeePC and an old laptop.

The EeePC is not supposed to be a super-powerful computer. Rather, the EeePC is supposed to be very portable, and affordable.

Re:History rears its head (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601974)

I see it as more of a big chunky PDA than a small portable PC. The non-windows OS, the solid state storage, and the crappy screen really make it useless as a replacement for a desktop, but its portability and (presumable) ruggedness make it great for carrying around and then copying files to a main PC

I think he's worried about nothing (3, Interesting)

wamerocity (1106155) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601366)

First of all, all these little laptops are really cute, but for anything that's not listening to mp3's, looking at pictures, and surfing the internet you are in trouble. Now I realize that this is what the vast majority of computers are used for, but people overbuy what they need because of what they MIGHT do. People buy trucks bigger than what they need so they can occasionally tow a boat - you also buy computers more powerful than what you need because you MIGHT want to want decent quality video clips. You might want to do some video and audio editing, you MIGHT want to keep more than 8-16gb's worth of data on your computer, and you MIGHT want to use the plethora of programs/ features that are found on XP that simply don't work that well or at all in Linux. I don't know about you, but surfing the internet on a 8" screen with a 800 x 480 resolution screen sounds like a nightmare, especially if you are used to even an SXGA. I personally think these are cute little gimmicks, but only time will tell for sure.

Re:I think he's worried about nothing (5, Insightful)

blackbirdwork (821859) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601660)

Did you use the Eee? It's the perfect device for a mobile world. Well, the internet tablets from Nokia would be the perfect devices but the qwerty keyboard of the Eee puts it in the first place. You can browse, play videos, music, chat, or do everything you need on that little screen. Sure, you won't feel comfortable using photoshop or any application that needs high resolution monitors, but that's not the target of the Eee.

Re:I think he's worried about nothing (2, Interesting)

Hatta (162192) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602010)

you also buy computers more powerful than what you need because you MIGHT want to want decent quality video clips. You might want to do some video and audio editing, you MIGHT want to keep more than 8-16gb's worth of data on your computer,

That's why you have a powerful desktop at home too. If you know that 99% of your computer use is editing text files, reading text files, playing mp3s or snes games then it's a great option. It was not so long ago that an eeepc would have been an amazing computer, even for a desktop and people still got work done back then. It's not really that big a deal to have to ssh back into your home desktop if you need something. And which is a bigger inconvenience: having to find a beefier computer once in a long while, or having to haul around a couple extra kilos all the time?

Re:I think he's worried about nothing (2, Interesting)

LocoSpitz (175100) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602252)

The biggest inconvenience is ponying up the extra cash to purchase a desktop and a laptop. Not everyone can afford to have a nice desktop at home in addition to a laptop on the go.

Re:I think he's worried about nothing (2, Informative)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602020)

IT also has an external VGA port - 1680×1050 max support, if you are plugged in and sitting on a desk.

(still, would like to see 1024 x 768 when they bump up the screen size later this year)

Re:I think he's worried about nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22602250)

Strange. I regularly surf from mine, and it works quite well. So does emacs, wireshark, metasploit, nmap, lyx, gcc, the gnu binutils suite, avr cross compilers, ssh and a few dozen other things. While I would prefer to analyze packet dumps on a desktop workstation, I can even do that on the fly. I will admit to running Xubuntu and having upgraded tha machine to 2GB ram, but neither was spectacularly difficult or expensive.

Sore losers (1)

0p7imu5_P2im3 (973979) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601402)

Sony is just upset that they didn't come up with it first.

Re:Sore losers (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602186)

They did come up with it first. Only problem is, they charge $2000 for their model. Sure the Sony has more power, but with such a small form factor, you can only use it for so many things. Most people won't pay $2000 for something with such limited functionality.

Sony can bite my shiny metal ass. (1)

wobedraggled (549225) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601412)

As much of a consumer whore as I am, I almost wish Sony would go away, they do nothing good for the marketplace. They now are going to get Video share due to Blu-ray and they will stick around, but for everything else there is usually a cheaper and better alternative. The future is full of cheaper lighter devices, they might just be pissed that their rootkits wont work on them.

Show of hands? (3, Funny)

bondjamesbond (99019) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601422)

OK, quick show of hands of those who feel sorry for Sony. One guy wayyy in the back. You can put your hand down, sir. Thanks.

Self-fulfilling prophesy (0)

esocid (946821) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601460)

"If (the Eee PC from) Asus starts to do well, we are all in trouble. That's just a race to the bottom," said Mike Abary....If the Eee PC just catches on with Linux developers, enthusiasts, and the tech-savvy early adopter crowd, that's fine by him. "But if mainstream buyers buy it, then, whoa," Abary said.
I see that quote coming from the mouth someone so high up in Sony as actually having some sort of scare effect on the industry, albeit very little. His candor is appreciated, since most goons within the industry will pound some idea that nothing is wrong, so at least this guy has a clear head about it all, but what affect this will have on the laptop industry may be smaller than he thinks. While I don't see users who still want a high-performing laptop will jumping ship for it, it opens the possibility for another "demographic" of users who want a decently performing laptop for a fraction of the standard costs, as well as reigniting that $100 laptop for developing countries effort.

DigiTimes has it that Asus actually sold through 350,000 Eee PCs in a single quarter, beating industry expectations by a solid 50,000 units.
But since that number is 300k more than expected, I could be flat out wrong, especially since Asus wants to sell them in best buys. I for one would welcome cheaper laptops, and may even consider one of these since I have a 2 desktops that are solid, performance wise.

You can't resist the market (1)

Abeydoun (1096003) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601482)

Well that's how the market's supposed to work Sony... I think you have your roles all mixed up, the vendor is the one that should be catering to the customer.

'If [Asus's Eee PC] starts to do well, we are all in trouble.'
In case you haven't realized, the Eee PC has been "doing well", they sold 300K units in 2007 and expect to sell several million in 2008. Even HP allegedly agrees http://www.engadget.com/2008/02/26/hp-so-confident-in-the-umpc-2133-its-building-2m-units/ [engadget.com]

Mobile world (5, Insightful)

blackbirdwork (821859) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601516)

I'm a happy owner of the following mobile devices:

- Asus Eee
- Nokia 770
- Nokia N810

I'd learnt something in these years: we don't need powerfull fat heavy devices, we need smaller and lighter devices, we don't care about power. For power we have fat big desktop computers.

I need a "mobile terminal" (1)

davidwr (791652) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601554)

I need a cheap laptop with good wireless, good video and sound, long battery life, and lightweight.

It doesn't need a lot of RAM or hard disk.

I'll use it as a thin client to remote-control my workhorse machines.

Is the Submitter jealous or something? (1)

Rinikusu (28164) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601606)

Yeah, I know it's cool to hate on big companies. However... /* Presumably by 'we' he means all the hardware manufacturers who sell over-priced, full-fat laptops */

Over-priced? Maybe. But full-fat? Are you not aware that Sony is one of the few laptop manufacturers who continually pushes the envelope for smaller, lighter, thinner and has been doing so for as long as I've been buying laptops? The 505 series, the Picturebooks, and I'm typing this on a Sony TR1A which is also my multimedia workstation (I make music and videos). If it weren't for Sony (and Panasonic, Fujitsu, IBM/Lenovo (x-series)), we probably wouldn't even be seeing the eee. Maybe you're just referring to all the bells and whistles, but these days, what does that mean? The eee comes pretty loaded by my standards, but is woefully short on ram and storage.

I'd like to see the eee succeed, in only that I'd like to see that form factor coming from Sony, et al but with more modern components. I dream of a re-release of the Picturebook with a ULV Core 2 Duo, a 4 hour battery life, and capacity for 2 gigs of RAM, starting at $899. ;)

At the very least, it just means that if the eee succeeds, it might drive price points lower so that the profit margins on the ultraportables might not be as good as they are now. Which, from a consumer standpoint is a good thing.

Re:Is the Submitter jealous or something? (1)

blackbirdwork (821859) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601746)

You can put 2gb on the Eee. Why do people always complains about ram and processor speed? People should USE the device and THEN complain if they need more speed or not. The Eee is perfectly balanced for its use and programs. More power is not necessary for the target of the Eee.

LNX Code 8 Processor? (0)

msgmonkey (599753) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601622)

Anyone wager this is some kind MIPS implementation or based on OpenCores RISC? 300 MHz is pretty slow, so I would also guess that its done on a pretty old feature size, likely to be built in those fabs in china?

Sony Has Bigger Laptop Problems (2, Interesting)

mpapet (761907) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601762)

than just this one product.

1. Take a look at this estimate of who builds laptops for what brand. http://tuxmobil.org/laptop_oem.html [tuxmobil.org] The brands like Sony might change vendors, but the manufacturers listed haven't changed, so re-arrange the check marks if you want to pretend.

2. Many of the OEM's are marketing barebones laptops which are going to eat into Sony's laptop business in unpleasant ways. MSI and Asus are two notables. http://usa.asus.com/products.aspx?l1=23 [asus.com]

Talk amongst yourselves....
 

Re:Sony Has Bigger Laptop Problems (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601966)

Now replace all your "Sony" references with "Apple" or any other higher end manufacturer. Guess what? There are plenty of people who'll spend more on a better product. Maybe you hadn't noticed, but Volvo, BMW, Mercedes, Porche, Ferrari et al, don't exactly care about low-end shit made by Ford or GM.

Customer (5, Insightful)

EaglemanBSA (950534) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601774)

Perhaps these companies (whether they be electronics manufacturers (Sony) or automotive manufacturers (GM), etc.) need to pull their heads out of their asses with respect to customer research.

LG did a bit of customer research, painted their washers and dryers red, and quadrupled sales overnight. Toyota made a tiny, efficient car (echo), and sales boomed. Asus made a PC that it figured would sell really well, and they were right, as a result of understanding their customers' CTQ's.

I love my eeepc because it's exactly what I need. Portable, durable, cheap and linux-based. Sony, Dell and the rest can produce what they want, but when it doesn't sell, it's nobody's fault but their own.

It might be the '80s all over again. (1)

SomeoneGotMyNick (200685) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601824)

Lets make them better and cheaper. The spirit of Jack Tramiel might be living on in ASUS

Just what we need (0, Redundant)

Sir_Sri (199544) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601868)

More support calls from people who want to play Wow on crappy computers, and will then complain about framerates.

Don't get me wrong, cheap computers certainly have an important place. My notebook was cheap, my desktop wasn't, but I don't seriously expect to play Crysis on my laptop.

These Eeepc's are bit like cheap indian cars that have no AC, no radio and cap out at 70Km/h. They have a place: People who can't afford better and/or aren't going to need to go on highways, and people who try just make life difficult for the rest of us.

Lets think about what you at least theoretically can do with an Eeepc: You can skype, edit documents, browse the web, and play a bit of music. Sounds good to me, it's cheap enough a student (public, high school, even some university students) can carry it around with them and not be in any major trouble if it gets lost or broken as long as they use some sort usb drive backup. Want to plug in your iPod though? Not enough storage space for it to be worthwhile. Want to play nearly any game based on a franchise, not going to happen (except maybe flash?). Need to load something from CD, not going to happen.

The drive to the bottom in cost is in many ways bad for people who develop software, games or otherwise. People can go out and spend 1500 dollars on a computer and it doesn't do even basic things like play games (Intel integraged graphics!), but other people can get a very good system for 1500 bucks, that's a problem with requirements analysis and companies selling crap which consumers clearly don't understand and it just alienates them from the whole process. If you start cutting away at storage space, memory etc... you start to seriously limit what we can allow consumers to do. How many years after DVD's were in every new machine sold did software developers have to keep selling stuff on CD (and waste that corresponding money) so they didn't get support calls from the 1% of users who think the machine they bought in 2002 should still run everything fine? What good is an 8GiB iPod when your computer only has 4 GiB of disk space? What do we do for all those people that openoffice simply doesn't cut it for (esspecially relatively sophisticated excel spreadsheets don't work well in OO)?

If anything we should be making sensible moves in the other direction: Computers that (may) cost more but aren't crap, which then can synchronize with these little sub-notebooks so that the kids can have something to take to school with relatively little risk. But actually using these as a primary machine is best limited to those who really cannot afford anything else, and even then as others have stated above, there are probably better deals.

Re:Just what we need (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22602048)

If you start cutting away at storage space, memory etc... you start to seriously limit what we can allow consumers to do.
In other words....

People won't be buying your bloated crapware because you only know how to code in VB6/.Net/Python/Java. You have no skills in computer programming and bitch that people are stupid because your bloatware won't run on the computers they buy.

I think perhaps you maybe the stupid one.

Re:Just what we need (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22602202)

As long as you are playing games that don't require much cpu or graphics power, like Crysis, then the eee is fine.
Crysis on eee:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hkZ3JZhG3z4&feature=related [youtube.com]

I'd say it is enough for audio editing too.
I've made albums on much less powerful computers.
The eee should be good for forty tracks and thirty or so plugins.

PC functionality and users (1, Interesting)

secPM_MS (1081961) | more than 6 years ago | (#22601962)

It appears to me that the critical thing to realize about the market in the developed world is that manufacturers are looking for reasons (marketable feature sets) that can be used to sell newer hardware to users who already have older hardware (in this case, new pc's to users of older pc's). Thus they exert strong pressure upon the OS and SW makers to add more and more features to justify the "upgrades". The software vendors do this as well, as otherwise their sale of a application package a decade ago would block their sale now.

As long as a large fraction of the consumers are willing to continue the feature race, there is good money to be had. I saw one study some time ago that concluded that for each 1$ Microsoft received, ~ $18 went into the the rest of the industry. This is of course true of all the other areas of the consumer economy, which is focused upon creating and satisfying "wants" in a never-ending cycle.

I don't want to get into a discussion of what people need vs. what they want. It does appear that the functionality to any given user increases very slowly with the total feature set of a product. Of course, different users will use different features.

If you are willing to work with text mode displays, you could and can do very well with very minimal systems. I did very well with a 12 MHz 286 running DOS 6.1 with Word Perfect 5.1 and QuattroPro 18 years ago. 25 years ago I used Emacs and Scribe / nroff for writing documents on Unix systems. My cousin just had her Win 3.1 system die (also a 286 system). She had been using Word Perfect to write scientific papers.

From a practical point of view, normal users needs for routine writing, spread sheet usage, and the like in a convenient GUI were satisfied with Office 97 on Win 98, and its equivalents. Win 98 systems were more than adequate for ripping of music and can handle moderate still image manipulation. I still have my Win 98 box (1.7 GHz P4, 80 GByte drive, although I upgraded it from 256 MBytes to 768 MBytes when I upgraded it to XP). Unfortunately, the Win 9X series were designed for a much less hostile environment than we now face. 9X systems should not be connected to the internet.

Win2K was developed for the enterprise and did well. It had more security, configurability, and manageability than the 9X series.

For consumers, XP followed the 9X series, and eventually offered far more security. The hardware that came of age in the XP environment is far more capable, and XP systems are easily capable of ripping and transcoding large video files and can easily handle speech recognition, and simultaneous demanding applications. Unfortunately, XP continued the 9X tradition of typically running the user as administrator and application writers made this assumption, making it very hard to run XP as a normal user.

From my point of view as a security geek, Vista is a security enhanced XP with enough kernel security enhancements to break a number of bad security practices of XP - with ensuing application breakage. You can run Vista a normal user and a lot of work went into hardening the system. We have seen ~ a 50% reduction in MSRC issues.

From a point of view of "needs", we get into a different discussion. What are you doing and in what environment? If you are producing text documents in a stand-alone system, you can get by with very limited HW. If you are working always connected to the web or a server, you can get by with a thin client. If you are in the mixed mode, the question comes down to what are you trying to do, and what support do you have available to do it. Most customer tasks are not that demanding and hence do not require that much HW. If I can go on-line to get functionality support that is beyond my box, I don't have to buy as much capability in my local device. We will see some interesting transitions in the next decade.

I run Windows at home because the apps I use were written for Windows (for example, OmniPage OCR) and I could get drivers for my devices for Windows (such as my Nikon film scanner). My daughter just had to do some conferencing with others in a on-line class through an Acrobat site. It did not take her long to get everything working with the WebCam. I do not know if I could have easily done it if we had been in a BSD or Linux environment.

Please fire kdawson (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22601992)

Dear Slashdot (Rob, etc.),

Please fire kdawson. This is the nth summary of his that I've read in as many days that has had one of the following properties:

* Title claims something other than what the summary talks about.
* Summary is impossible to understand, due to atrocious grammar (and we're not talking about forgetting a comma, or confusing its and it's).

If you're not going to fire him, at least send him to some sort of writing class. I like to check Slashdot for news, and I like to get a good idea for what a story is about before I click a link to read more. Kdawson fails at providing this service.

-Concerned Reader

Classic arrogance (1)

British (51765) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602030)

Mike Abary's statments remind me of the incredibly stubborn comments from Sony PR regarding the PS3. Nice to see such comments are made from other parts of Sony, not just the PS3 division. Sony's just jealous of the EEE's success, and the potential cut in their profits. "low price" to sony means $1200 for a UMPC or something.

Thanks Sony (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22602072)

Thanks for the free advertising! Many more people will have heard of and consider this product because of this.

Thanks for legitimizing our product.

Yours Truly,
Asus

Somy is against customization (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22602076)

The clain from the article that sony laptops are customozable is ridiculous. Customization means user friendly upgrades, only two screws for replacing the hard disk, user friendly upgradable, socketed cpus, not stupid. cosmetic choices. say pink or yellow laptops (anyway this is apple's specialty, not sony's). User upgrades personalize a computer, nor cover colors. Replacing a hard disk or a defective fan in a sony laptop can be a nightmare, removing a hundred of screws, etc.
Sony is an electronic appliance company, not a real computer company. They have to learn that a computer is not a radio set or a washing machine, it must be user upgradable.

Has a point... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22602098)

in one way.

If PCs and Laptops are too cheap, they'll become disposable and end up in the landfill.
Do we want more and more electronics and components in the landfills ?
It would be okay if laptops/computers/phones were recyclable, but they are not.

I'd rather buy a item that's reliable and lasts forever, I don't want to keep replacing crap with more cheap crap.

Tell me when they have a Sony Sandbender (1)

argent (18001) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602222)

Crocodile-skin print on the case, nothing. When Sony makes a machine with a case of recycled aluminum cans, and a keyboard using material from old piano keys and bakelite telephones, then I'll be impressed.

So that's what Sony says is it? (4, Funny)

Panaqqa (927615) | more than 6 years ago | (#22602272)

Hmm. It seems to me that rootkitting your customer's computers is more like the REAL race to the bottom.
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