Asus Eee PC

Asus rumored to be spinning off Eee brand, 11-inch Eee PC coming too 
 Information doesn't get much more twisted that this so you'd best tread lightly with it. We've got a DigiTimes rumor whose message appears modified in translation. Engadget Chinese tells us that the original DigiTimes article (in Chinese) states that Asus is planning an Eee PC "sub-corporation." In other words, an ASUS spin-off that would include more than just low-cost ultra-portables. The rumor is attributed to DigiTimes' proven ASUS sources. However, DigiTimes' own English translation simply calls the move an Eee "sub-brand" which was already obvious with ASUS' announced plans for additional Eee branded products including the E-DT desktop, E-TV television, and 19- to 21-inch E-Monitor all-in-one said to be due in Q3. DigiTimes' sources also claim that ASUS will slap a 1001 model number on its 10.6-inch Eee PC and then -- perhaps supporting the spin-off claim -- says that there will be a premium 11-inch Eee PC before the end of the year as well. Originally, Jerry Shen, ASUS CEO, said the Eee PC would never exceed 10-inches so that it wouldn't cut into ASUS' laptop offerings. A spinoff would presumably give the Eee brand more freedom to compete.

Asustek to Launch Eee PC With 10-inch Screen

Asustek plans to launch a new version of the Eee PC with a 10-inch screen, a top executive said Monday.

The company's CEO made the statement at the launch of the new Eee PC 900 with an 8.9-inch screen, in Taiwan. The original Eee PC 701 carries a 7-inch screen.

"The feedback we've received from users has been great. Many have asked us for bigger screens and better usability. That's what made us start developing the Eee PC 900," said Jerry Shen, CEO of Asustek, during a news conference in Taipei. People are asking for bigger keypads and more software as well, issues the company continues to work on.

An Eee PC with a 10-inch screen could be out later this year, and it will be the biggest screen an Eee PC will ever get, Shen said. The company defines anything with a 12-inch screen or larger a classic notebook PC, not an Eee PC.

Asustek believes that screen size makes a difference in sales.

The new Eee PC 900 with the 8.9-inch screen will likely account for 50 percent of overall Eee PC shipments by June, and 60 percent or more of shipments sometime in the second half of the year, said Shen.

He declined to set a firm date for release of a new Eee PC with a 10-inch screen, and would not talk about possible prices. But a 10-inch screen could make a new Eee PC model much more expensive than the 8.9-inch model. Once screen sizes reach 12-inches, they are nearing mainstream sizes, where mass production reduces the price-per-unit. But a 10-inch screen is still a specialty, and therefore more expensive screen size.

The Eee PC 900 went on sale Monday in Taiwan for NT$15,988 (US$528).