More Eee PCs to ship with Windows than Linux this year

The Eee PC has been lauded for promoting a free, open-source Linux operating system, and current Eees all come pre-installed with a Xandros-based distribution. However, the tables may turn drastically as the year goes on. eWeek reports that Asus expects a whopping 60% of all Eee PCs shipped in 2008 to come with Windows XP pre-loaded instead of Linux.

Last week, the Taiwanese computer maker officially announced a Windows XP-based version of the Eee PC, saying the machine would also come bundled with a copy of the Microsoft Works productivity suite. Microsoft Works includes word processing, spreadsheet, database, and calendar applications, providing a replacement for the free OpenOffice.org software that comes on the Linux Eee.

Asus didn’t reveal pricing for the Windows model then, but now EeeWeek eWeek says the company will peg it at “around $390 to $400.” That would make this system about the same price as the $399.99 Eee PC 4G, although considering neither Windows nor Works is free, Asus might cut down the hardware a little in order to stick around the same price range. Nonetheless, Asus expects Windows-based offerings to account for three million of the five million Eee PCs it plans to ship worldwide this year.

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    • pedro
    • 12 years ago

    Good points.

    I agree that Linux is still a long way off replacing Windows on desktops. People need to be able to do fancy things like print and use WiFi and plug in Firewire devices and have them work without opening up terminals. It’s that simple.

    But it is getting there, no question… Having it available on things like the eee I reckon helps speed things up a bit. Could be wrong.

    It’s a shame that put that pretty crappy distro on it but it was a start at least.

    But, again, the real acid test for me is that my mum can use it.

    Note: replies to #3 & #6.

    • lucas1985
    • 12 years ago

    #1,
    Do you mean that the Linux Eee PC is unable to browse the web, check mail and do lightweight document work? Perhaps Firefox is a command-line browser and OpenOffice is a TeX front-end.
    I think your Microsoft-centric view of the market is blinding you to reality.
    #9,
    Do you want me to believe that the average Joe is buying the current Eee PC?
    #10,
    Obviously, you don’t even understand what free means in the GNU/Linux world. And if you don’t pay for a copy of an OS you aren’t infringing copyright laws.

    So, the Eee PC with more bang for the buck is the one which runs a Linux distro and ships with a XP driver CD.

      • Vrock
      • 12 years ago

      q[

    • WaltC
    • 12 years ago

    /[http://www.xandros.com/products/home/home_edition.html<]§ Note that "Home Premium" is $80. Not free at all. And, it isn't going to be "free" for Asus or any other computer maker, either. Whatever Asus buys from Xandros will cost Asus money. Then there is hardware and application support for Asus to consider, so that people will find the Eee PCs useful for more than being door-stops that boot...;) All of this considered, it's understandable why more people would find this machine more attractive with Windows. Even Macs natively boot Windows these days, and even Apple supplies the software to make it so. This post isn't about dissing Linux and puffing Windows. It's about the fact that no OS on earth is "free" and that they all cost lots of money to develop and support in terms of software and hardware compatibility--which is *the reason* that none of them are free. Sometimes I don't know what people are imagining when they say things like this--do they see in their mind's eye a "Linux tree" growing in the wild somewhere that produces Linux distros as low-hanging fruit? Beats me...;) "Free" is no more applicable to Linux distros than it is to Windows.

      • stmok
      • 12 years ago

      r[

        • Metalianman
        • 12 years ago

        I’m a Linux geek myself and I would say the same thing if you hadn’t got to it first… I’m glad that someone knew enough to say something… Whenever I see someone say Linux is “free” by meaning the price I get pissed off coz he obviously doesn’t know what he’s talking about!

        I’ve been working on computers long enough to know that whatever I want to do on a computer I can do it much better on Linux as long as I spend enough time to configure them to my needs. On the other hand I have wasted countless hours trying to edit drivers for hardware that I will replace in a few months time… I wish manufacturers would spend a bit more time on Linux drivers…

    • TrptJim
    • 12 years ago

    So what happens after XP stops being sold? I’m not too sure Vista would be a very good replacement for such a machine.

      • DrDillyBar
      • 12 years ago

      It’d be fine with Home Basic.

    • pedro
    • 12 years ago

    ‘Tis a shame. I’ve had all sorts of distros on my eee but I’ve settled on eeeXubuntu which is absolutely great.

    And I’ve learnt a whole heap about Linux in the meantime which has resulted in Linux being installed on two computers at home.

    And I’ve even got my mum using Ubuntu which is saying something.

      • Vrock
      • 12 years ago

      Well, you’re a geek, so you’re the exception. Asus is smart enough to know if they want to sell these things to mainstream consumers, they need to offer them with a mainstream OS.

      • lithven
      • 12 years ago

      /[<'Tis a shame. I've had all sorts of distros on my eee but I've settled on eeeXubuntu which is absolutely great.<]/ Don't you think the above may be the reason Linux isn't doing so well in displacing Windows on the desktop? I don't want to start a flame war but when someone (even an admitted geek) feels the need to test different "distros" on their computer (instead of, say, simply using the computer) that may indicate a possible deterrent to mainstream adoption. ETA: This is not to say I think Linux is bad. I'm actually tempted to pick up an eeePC 900 with Linux installed when they are released.

    • Vrock
    • 12 years ago

    No surprise. Consumers don’t want the unfamiliar and incompatible, regardless of how good or free it is. Wal-Mart finally figured this out a couple days ago.

      • adisor19
      • 12 years ago

      If Asus would keep a nice 100$ price difference between the 2, you can bet your ass consumers will go for the Linux one. However, if both will be at the same price, most will go for the Windows one.

      Adi

        • Vrock
        • 12 years ago

        You think so, huh? Wal-Mart found out the hard way that their uber-cheap Linux PCs were a solution looking for a problem, so much so that they decided to stop selling them. I think your geekcentric view of the market is blinding you to reality. Consumers want compatibility and familiarity, and Linux doesn’t give them that.

          • poulpy
          • 12 years ago

          Will you stop calling everybody defending Linux a geek?

          I agree that most of the population who learned under Windows just doesn’t want to spend one minute under an un-familiar environment but there’s still a large portion that a) could learn using OSX or Linux from the start and b) is still mostly computer illiterate and can use anything as long as it runs.

          My mom with 0 computer skills was perfectly happy with a Linux laptop + printer I installed her (email; web, openoffice) so I don’t see why a similar configuration sold by dell or anyone else wouldn’t work as well. And it does if you look only at the Eee pc which solds lots running under linux. This article is about marketshare predictions of the Windows version which price and hardware is still unknown, seems to me you’re just trolling here..

          The fact that Wall Mart didn’t succeed doesn’t mean the whole idea is wrong nor that Linux or OSX will never make it, they both came a long way.
          OSX and Linux offer very cute and friendly desktops solutions, and certainly lighter than Vista, and if Linux has still a couple of rough edges if you look at the big picture it’s evolving very fast.

            • Vrock
            • 12 years ago

            I don’t mean “geek” in a bad way. Hell, I’m a geek (though I don’t use Linux). I’m just pointing out the difference between us and the mainstream. We are not the market, at least not if Asus wants to make any serious money on this thing or have any kind of foothold in the market.

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