NorhTec's last attempt
at a super-cheap laptop hasn't exactly rocked many peoples' boats -- with its 7-inch display surrounded by the king of all bezels and a $300 price, you don't have to spend much more to get a lot more netbook. Word on the 'net is, though, that there's a new Gecko EduBook on the way, set for debut at Computex and moving up to a netbook-standard 8.9-inch, 1024 x
600 LED-backlit screen while also dropping to a sub-$200 price point. That's possible thanks to a new architecture based on an Xcore86 system on a chip, offering a 1GHz processor and power consumption of just 1.2 watts, equating to four hours of battery life on eight NiMH AA batteries or six hours if Li-on cells are used. Full specs are at the read link, a demonstration video below, and, while this little lappy is still far from a powerhouse, it certainly looks a lot more appealing than its predecessor -- and some other low-cost alternatives
Michael Barnes from NorhTech wrote in to clarify the history of these and the pricing a bit. The EduBook is completely modular and if you happen to be a small country looking to make a large order you can configure these for well under $150, but for the rest of us individual units should be available in the $195 range. Additionally, more models are on the way, including a 10-inch netbook and even a nettop.
[Warning: PDF read link]