Print 72 comment(s) - last by nukunukoo.. on May 17 at 12:08 AM

MSI breaks Wind on ASUS Eee PC for $399

Yesterday, DailyTech reported that ASUS' new Eee PC 900 is available now from a few online retailers -- albeit at prices higher than the MSRP. In the case of ZipZoomFly, it was charging $50 more than MSRP yesterday for the Windows XP variant of the Eee PC 900.

These higher prices are in addition to the $549.99 price tag that many have balked at ever since ASUS announced pricing for the second generation Eee PC in mid-April. $549.99 is a far cry from the Eee PC 2G's $299 price tag or even the original Eee PC 4G's $399 price tag.

MSI has heard the concerns of potential customers that are disheartened by ASUS's decision to push the Eee PC into a higher-priced, dangerous territory. The company's new 10" Wind will be priced at $399 in base form when it launches on June 3.

Although MSI will produce the Wind in 8.9" and 10" variants, U.S. customers will only receive the larger 10" display with a 1024x600 resolution. The base configuration features an 80GB 2.5" HDD, 512MB of memory, 3-cell battery (2.5 hours), and runs Novel SUSE Linux. A variant featuring Windows XP, 80GB SATA HDD, 1GB of memory, Bluetooth, and 6-cell battery (6 hours) will set you back $549.99.

Both versions will come equipped with a 1.6GHz Intel Atom (Diamondville) processor and both will come with two DIMM slots to aid in upgrading system memory -- ASUS' Eee PC comes with just a single DIMM slot for expansion.

Other features of the MSI Wind include three USB 2.0 ports, a SD/MMC reader, VGA-out, 10/100 NIC, and 802.11b/g wireless. The device is also just a tad bit heavier than ASUS' Eee PC 900 at 2.64 pounds. In addition, the MSI Wind will be available in black, white, silver, baby blue, and pink for those that want to add a bit of "personality" to their notebook purchase.

Hopefully, MSI's Wind will give ASUS a wakeup call in the U.S. market. ASUS brought the low-cost, ultraportable market to life with its original Eee PC 4G, but it looks like other manufacturers are here to show ASUS that it isn't the only game in town.

You can view additional images of the MSI Wind over at LAPTOP Magazine.

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Good price and base spec
By psychobriggsy on 5/13/2008 5:44:53 PM , Rating: 2
Hurrah, a full sized return key for us Brits.

Shame that 10" isn't that much smaller than this 12" iBook.

RE: Good price and base spec
By Cullinaire on 5/13/2008 5:53:07 PM , Rating: 2
Blah, I'll take a usable \ key any day of the week. Speaking of which, where is the \ key on that thing?!

RE: Good price and base spec
By CCRATA on 5/13/2008 5:57:28 PM , Rating: 2
its next to the Z key. | and \ are on the same key, the pic must have been distorted somehow so it looks like | and |

RE: Good price and base spec
By idconstruct on 5/13/2008 6:39:09 PM , Rating: 4
that doesn't bother me as much as taking the ctrl button out of the corner... if the ctrl and fn keys were switched it'd be perfect for its size.

RE: Good price and base spec
By Oregonian2 on 5/13/2008 7:01:16 PM , Rating: 1
Control key still isn't in its proper place (to the left of the 'A' key)!

RE: Good price and base spec
By Saosin on 5/14/2008 9:34:36 AM , Rating: 2
Omg, how can computer manufacturers still make this newbie mistake? NO ONE wants the Fn key to the left of Ctrl.

RE: Good price and base spec
By DanaGoyette on 5/15/2008 11:25:34 AM , Rating: 2
No one? Aren't you being a bit presumptive (right word?)?

I've used keyboards both ways, and I actually slightly prefer having "fn" to the left of "ctrl". Either way will take some "getting used to" if you're coming from the opposite.
Some of HP's business notebooks actually have a BIOS option to swap "fn" and "ctrl" -- now that's a truly thoughtful design.

RE: Good price and base spec
By sliderule on 5/13/2008 6:51:01 PM , Rating: 2
Nice specs indeed for the price, although the track pad looks like a postage stamp, lol.

I wonder how the track pad compares in size to the eee 900?

Off topic: I hope HP revamps the mininote soon, because design wise it looks better than all of these, but the specs suck.

RE: Good price and base spec
By shabby on 5/13/2008 8:24:20 PM , Rating: 2
At first glance it looked like it didnt even had one, too bad it doesnt have that thingy in the middle of the keyboard like the ibm's have.

RE: Good price and base spec
By ChoadNamath on 5/13/2008 9:27:20 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, these sub-notebook makers really need to step up and throw a trackpoint on there. It makes so much sense for this size notebook with so little room for a touchpad, but no one offers them.

RE: Good price and base spec
By mmntech on 5/13/2008 7:26:30 PM , Rating: 1
The 12'' iBook is still one of the best light weight laptops around almost three years after it was discontinued. 6hr battery life, a dedicated GPU (Radeon 9550 32mb), and it was below $1000.

The new Mist certainly looks nice and the inclusion of the Atom is a huge bonus for it, finally boosting battery life to 6hrs, which I think is where it should be for a product like this. It also features a lot more HDD space at a similar price point as the Eee. I think Asus bungled the Eee 900 by not waiting for the Atom to come out. A little more screen real estate and a slightly bigger SSD is not worth the price jump in my opinion. It still has the same underclocked Celeron and lackluster battery life. I think the SSDs are still the real Achilles heel though, accounting for probably half the price of the system. Small storage bumps add quite a bit to the price.

RE: Good price and base spec
By Mr Perfect on 5/14/2008 1:43:18 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, the Eee900 now offers two CPU modes( ). The underclocked 650MHz mode is battery saving mode, but when plugged into mains power it now runs at the full 900MHz. Not much, I know, but if the 1.6GHz Atom performs around the same as an 800MHz Celeron, then performance between the two should be close.

"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007

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