Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 12th May 2008 17:40 UTC
Windows Last week, we reported on a peculiar price difference in Australia between the Linux and Windows versions of the Asus Eee PC 900, the new model in the Eee line. The Windows model was 50 USD cheaper than the Linux model - the Linux model did have a bigger hard drive, but interestingly, the version with the smaller hard drive was not available as a Linux machine. This gave rise to speculation that Microsoft had been putting pressure on Asus to favour Windows XP over Linux. It appears Microsoft's assault in this segment of the market goes deeper than just Asus and the Eee alone.
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Hardware limits
by Knuckles on Tue 13th May 2008 08:08 UTC
Knuckles
Member since:
2005-06-29

The problem with this is that the manufacturers will not exceed the stipulated hardware limits, so that they can still ship windows, so all these pc's will be artificially limited by microsoft's position.

This is a bit like sata optical drives: they had some problems with xp, so for years we didn't have them, but when vista came out they finally started appearing everywhere, and now they're very common and dirt-cheap like IDE drives before them.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Hardware limits
by lemur2 on Tue 13th May 2008 09:40 in reply to "Hardware limits"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

The problem with this is that the manufacturers will not exceed the stipulated hardware limits, so that they can still ship windows, so all these pc's will be artificially limited by microsoft's position.


There is too little "room" in Microsoft's ULCPC position. Microsoft has constrained the CPU speed, storage and RAM to a value that will just support XP. That means these machines will never run Vista, and machines offered will all have to be at the "full allowable spec". The machines from every manufacturer will be the same, in order to be "top of the line ULCPC" and still get a discount from Microsoft.

It won't be that long before another manufacturer sees an opportunity. There will be an opportunity for an also-ran manufacturer, whose ULCPC model is not favoured as a popular choice, to say "to hell with Windows" and to put out a ULCPC model featuring a multi-core faster CPU, more memory, more storage, possibly a touch-screen and a decent Linux distribution, making a killer machine hardware specification compared to the rest of the market for the same money.

The manufacturer would have to be one who didn't depend on selling Windows machines normally, but still a high-profile name. Nokia is one name that comes to mind ... perhaps offering a KDE 4.1 distribution? (KDE is based on Qt after all). Mandriva perhaps, later this year?

It will become widely known that you can put Windows on this machine after you have purchased it, if you happen to have a spare copy of Windows wink wink.

The sales will still all count as Linux sales, regardless if the Linux distribution stays on the machine or not.

Microsoft will not get any money from these sales.

Edited 2008-05-13 09:45 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Hardware limits
by tomcat on Wed 14th May 2008 01:51 in reply to "RE: Hardware limits"
tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

Microsoft will not get any money from these sales...


Right, and it's such a marginal scenario that it's really not worthy of much consideration.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Hardware limits
by tomcat on Wed 14th May 2008 01:49 in reply to "Hardware limits"
tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

The problem with this is that the manufacturers will not exceed the stipulated hardware limits, so that they can still ship windows, so all these pc's will be artificially limited by microsoft's position.


The UMPC category is going to advance, with or without MS. So, I wouldn't read too much into the current licensing.

Reply Parent Score: 2