“Specs and launch plans aren’t entirely nailed down, but this new Eee PC line has quite a bit going for it, even as crowded as this market is getting. The 7-inch ultraportable is based on an unnamed Intel chipset, and runs regular Windows XP or Linux without a problem, but really shines in its “easy” mode that strips things down to a barebones OS mainly for internet browsing (sound familiar, Foleo?).” – Engadget based on Hardware Zone info.
The e-book angle: So how good is the Eee screen? And no mention of tablet form. For pure e-reading, the OLPC machine would still seem to be the way to go—if you don’t mind perhaps having to buy a second machine for a child in a developing country. Upside of the Eee is that via regular Windows you can run a bunch of mainstream e-book readers and read DRMed books from major publishers. I just wish DRM would go away so we didn’t have to worry about that. Otherwise the honors from an e-book perspective would clearly belong to the $175 OLPC machine.
More info: “The Eee line will kick things off with the Eee PC 701, which will sport 802.11b/g WiFi, Ethernet and a modem for connectivity, along with a webcam, 512MB of RAM and a 4, 8 or 16GB flash drive for speedy, reliable storage. The real kicker is that prices for the 2 pound laptop are supposed to start as low as $200, and the Intel/Asus duo won’t be aiming this at massive governmental purchases, but instead will be offering it to consumers through traditional retail channels.” Apparently this is the non-school version of the Classmate.
The Eee name, as reported in Hardwarezone: “Easy to learn, work, play; Excellent Internet experience and Excellent mobile computing experience.”