I’ve been sitting on the Eee PC S101 for rather longer than I ought to have done – sorry about that Asus. But one of the reasons is that it is really a very nice machine indeed.
The Eee PC S101 is a netbook, but you’d hardly know it. Right out of the box it looks like a businessperson’s kind of computer. No plasticy casing here. Instead the brown lid looks classy enough to pass in a business meeting. And inside the quality construction continues with good looking components all round.
The keyboard is nicely made. No flex, large keys, comfortable to use. And the screen measures 10.2 inches across the diagonal and has a wide format offering 1024 x 600 pixels. There is a 0.3 megapixel webcam above the screen.
The internals are very netbook, The processor is Intel’s Atom N270. There is Ethernet, Wi-Fi that supports Draft-N, Bluetooth. 1GB of RAM ensures that Windows XP Home runs smoothly enough. Three USB connectors, headphones and microphone connectors, an Ethernet port and a VGA connector sit around the edges.
And there is an SD card slot on the back edge of the casing. An unusual place for it, perhaps, but the provided 16GB SDHC card fits in to it fine and augments the 16GB SSD inside the S101 to give you a total of 30GB of storage.
A neat touch is the suede-alike slip case for carrying the 1Kg S101 around. And Asus throws in 30GB of online storage for a limited period too. You’ll find all the details and specifications here.
The problem with the S101 is its price. It’ll cost you over £400 inc VAT, and for that kind of money you can get a low cost fully fledged notebook. Or, put another way, you can match the specs of this netbook and spend a heck of a lot less money.
With that in mind, like lots of other people, I’m very interested to see what happens to the netbook concept during 2009 both in terms of its infringement on low cost notebook territory, its extension at the lower end of the market and the expansion of the concept.
Computer in a keyboard, anybody?