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Wednesday, October 29, 2008
HP Launches $400 Netbooks

Hewlett-Packard today unveilled a new HP Mini 1000 line in a move to gain ground in the fastest-growing PC category, which until now has been dominated by its smaller rivals.

Netbooks -- ultraportable, inexpensive laptops designed for Web browsing and light tasks -- have taken the PC market by storm this year, with smaller computer firms such as Acer and Asus leading the charge.

HP's sleek new Mini 1000, costing about $400, is significantly different from the company's first netbook release, launched last spring. It uses Intel's Atom N270 1.6GHz processor, and is also substantially less expensive.

Each new netbook is less than 1-inch thick, weighs a little more than 2 poundsand has a keyboard that is 92 percent the size of a standard notebook PC keyboard. All come with a BrightView widescreen Infinity display (1,024 x 600 resolution) with flush glass and LED backlight, built-in webcam and microphone.

HP will release three models:

The HP Mini 1000 features a piano-black finish with HP Imprint swirl design is pre-installed with Windows XP Home. It includes an Ethernet jack, two USB ports, and Wi-Fi and Bluetooth wireless capabilities. Versions with 3G capabilitiesare expected to be available in December. The new netbook will start at $399 jumping to $549 for a fully loaded model. The company's first netbook, the 2133, starts at $599 and tops out at $749, features a Via chip and runs Windows Vista.

Configuration choices include screen size ? 8.9-inch or 10.2-inch diagonal BrightView display ? and solid-state or mechanical hard-drive options.

The HP Mini 1000 Vivienne Tam Edition comes in red. It seeks to satisfy the Internet-centric fashionista and features a 10.2-inch diagonal BrightView display.

The Vivienne Tam Edition companion PC runs Windows XP Home. It includes an Ethernet jack, two USB ports, and Wi-Fi and Bluetooth wireless capabilities. It will retail for $699. Versions with 3G capabilities are expected to be available in December.

The HP Mini 1000 with MIE (Mobile Internet Experience) is a simple, mobile Internet companion. An HP-developed interface makes it easy to enjoy digital content ? videos, photos, music and email ? on demand and on the go. MIE comes loaded with instant messaging, email and Skype for online video chat.

The HP Mini 1000 with MIE runs the Linux operating system. It includes an Ethernet jack, two USB ports, and Wi-Fi and Bluetooth wireless capabilities. It will be available for $379.

In the third quarter, Acer gained ground on HP and Dell, with a big assist from mini-notebooks.

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