News Bits: Atom-Based Eee PC, Firefox 3, New Fujitsu Notebooks and External GraphicBooster

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Fujitsu Siemens introduces Amilo 3000 series notebooks

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Fujitsu Siemens Computers introduced their new consumer notebook line, the Amilo 3000 series. It has a uniform design and is black and white. An FSC spokesperson said “The design and other improvements in the Amilo 3000 line are not trendy gimmicks or short-term fads. Our investments are long-term and will enable us to strengthen and develop our position as the largest European provider in the consumer market.”

The Amilo 3000 series will be available with 16- and 18.4-inch screens. At the moment there are a lack of hardware specifications.

The 3000 series has a special new feature – the Amilo GraphicBooster, which we reported on last week. The Amilo GraphicBooster improves 3D performance up to 470% over integrated graphics. It can support up to three external displays via HDMI and DVI connections.

The 3000 series will feature hybrid graphics, which will allow users to switch between integrated and dedicated graphics on the fly with no reboot required. ATI Hybrid CrossFireX technology allows for simultaneous use of integrated and dedicated graphics. Information on the technology is vague at the moment, but it sounds promising.

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Special thanks to Michael for sending this in

Dell found guilty of fraud by New York

The Albany County Supreme Court on Tuesday found Dell guilty of fraud, false advertising, deceptive business practics, and abusive debt practices. The court found that:

  • Dell deprived customers of technical support they were eligible for by making them wait for a long time on the phone
  • Refusing to offer support after a support contract ended even though the customer contacted Dell about it before the contract was up
  • “Next day” repair service customers sometimes had to wait up to a year to get support
  • Dell Financial Services (DFS) denied almost everyone for special advertised no-interest financing, and charged interest rates as high as 30 percent
  • Dell and DFS incorrectly billed people for cancelled orders not authorized by them, harassed people for payment, and used illegal billing and collection practices

Dell did not comment on the ruling yet, and the court has not determined how much Dell will have to pay. As of right now, Dell and DFS are forbidden from continued engagement in the fradulent activities.

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ASUS to launch laptops with DeviceVM instant-on feature

ASUS said on Thursday that it will launch five new notebook computers with DeviceVM’s Splashtop instant-on software. The five notebooks will be the M70T, M50V, M51T, F8Va, and F8Vr. ASUS recently said the Splashtop instant-on technology will be used on “millions of motherboards”, namely its P5Q series.

Splashtop is an embedded OS with Firefox and Skype pre-installed. This means customers will not have to boot up Windows when they just want to surf the Internet.

Notebooks featuring the Splashtop operating are expected to be available at the end of June/early July. More notebooks featuring the Splashtop will become available in the upcoming months.

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Asus getting ready for Atom-based Eee PC 901 launch

According to a DigiTimes report, ASUS has stopped taking orders for the current Eee PC 900 in preparation for the upcoming Eee PC 901 launch. The 901 will launch on June 3 and feature the new Intel Atom processor.

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15.6-inch panels to become mainstream

LCD panel suppliers are expected to push 15.6-inch, 16:9 aspect ratio panels as the next mainstream standard. PC makers including Dell, Acer, ASUS, Toshiba, and Lenovo have plans to introduce 15.6-inch notebooks, and will start introducing notebooks featuring the new panels by the end of Q2/early Q3. 15.6-inch panel prices are similar to 15.4-inch panel prices.

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Mozilla wants to break Guiness record with Firefox 3

Mozilla wants to break the Guiness record for the most software downloads in a 24-hour period with the release of Firefox 3. Download Day will begin as soon as Firefox 3 launches and last for 24 hours.

The release of Firefox 3 is expected in mid-June. Mozilla already has a site set up for the browser:

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Apple to Offer Student Discount on Macs next week

Apple is well known for having a strong presence in the education market and of late their sales have been very strong among those of college age.  To help entice student buyers to buy a Mac each year the company usually offers some type of rebate or discount, last year it involved getting a $199 rebate on the combined purchase of a Mac and iPod.  Rumor has it that next week Apple will roll out its biggest student discount offer yet.  So if you’re a university student or faculty member and planning on buying a Mac soon, might want to wait until at least next week to see what the full details of the offer are.

Full Story (Apple Student Discount 2008)



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