Amidst a flurry of small and seemingly underpowered netbooks, HP has taken a slightly different tact in their release of the surprisingly capable HP Mini-Note device. While its up-to-$850 price tag places it in a significantly different category than the Eee PC and other cheap sub-notebooks, it easily makes up for this price difference with functionality and power approaching that of its larger siblings: full sized laptops.
We’ve got an HP Mini-Note unboxing gallery for you to check out if you want to see how the thing looks from all angles, and of course, you can click through for Gear Live’s in-depth review of the HP Mini-Note 2133’s features, capabilities, and user experience, below.
Today, HP made rumors of their releasing a low-cost ultra-portable PC a reality with the official announcement of the HP 2133 Mini-Note. Meant for the education market, the HP 2133 Mini-Note is designed with students in mind, and is optimized for both in-classroom and out-of-school learning. The 2133 Mini-Note features an 8.9-inch WXGA scratch-resistant display, lightweight anodized aluminum shell,and Wi-Fi. HP also threw in their 3D DriveGuard technology, which locks the drive in the event of sudden movement for protection of data, as well as HP DuraKeys, which prevents fading. You know kids and their greasy fingers.
“HP listened to our needs and now is delivering a product designed by education for education,” said Chris Sieger, director of information technology for Alexandria City Public Schools in Virginia. “Teachers and technology are the two most important assets in education. HP’s announcement demonstrates that it understands what schools need from industry.”
HP is aiming to keep this one inexpensive, so the Mini-Note starts at $499 USD. You can add on things like Bluetooth, integrated VGA webcam, and CompuTrace software which helps local law enforcement track stolen computers.
The HP 2133 Mini-Note PC should be available later this month, and you can check out more images of the device in our Mini-Note photo gallery.
Gallery: HP 2133 Mini-Note PC launches
OQO has opened its online outlet store that carries their refurbished UMPCs at some excellent price points. Their second generation mobile PC, unveiled at the 2007 CES, features 1.2GHz CPU, holds 512MB SDRAM, has a 40GB HDD and WiFi/Bluetooth capability. Prices begin at $999.00 and come with a 1 year warranty.
The site also offers a portable docking station with optical drive and multiple ports for $299.00 and the iGo Stowaway Bluetooth Travel Mouse with optical pickup and scroll wheel (compatible with the UMPC 02 ) for $79.00.
We visited Samsung and learned about their new Ultra Mobile Personal Computers (UMPC). They’re basically palm-sized computers with the power of a laptop. Their line starts with the Q1 Ultra, which runs Windows XP or Vista has a standard 80GB hard drive, a battery life of 4 ½ hours with WiFi enabled, includes a webcam, 2 USB ports and an SD Card slot, weighing only 1.5 pounds at a price of $1300 USD. There’s also the Q1 Ultra SSD, with a 32 GB solid-state drive for increased boot time and access to data. Finally, there’s the just-launched, award-winning Q1 Ultra Premium, with a powerful Intel Pentium Mobile Processor, 80GB hard drive, and a battery life up to 7.5 hours with WiFi enabled. Available at the end of the month for $1500.
We caught up with Jory Bell of OQO, who gave us a thorough tour of the new OQO Model 02 Ultra-Mobile PC device at CES. These guys have been at the small form factor handheld PCs longer than anyone else we know, and we walked away impressed.