Eee PC 900 hitting U.S. stores on May 12

Mark your calendars, Eee PC fans. Asus tells us its next-generation Eee PC 900 sub-notebook has become available for pre-order in the United States, pending a retail launch on May 12. According to Asus, U.S. customers will be third in line to get the machine, after folks in Hong Kong and the United Kingdom.

As we've already reported, the Eee PC 900 brings a larger, higher-resolution screen, more RAM, and greater storage capacity than the previous Eee PC 700. The new laptop has a display 8.9 inches across with a 1024 x 600 resolution, and it packs 1GB of DDR2 memory with either 12GB or 20GB of storage capacity. Asus offers the 12GB capacity via 4GB and 8GB solid-state drives in the version of the Eee PC 900 with Windows XP pre-installed, while it slaps 4GB and 16GB SSDs in the Linux-based model for a combined 20GB of capacity.

Other features in the Eee PC 900's bag of tricks include 802.11b/g Wi-Fi, a 1.3-megapixel web camera, an MMC/SD card reader, and a four-cell battery. The whole laptop weighs in at 2.18 lbs (989 g) with a footprint of just 8.86" x 6.69" x 0.79"-1.33" (22.5 x 17 x 2-3.38 cm). In the U.S., Asus says it will price both the Windows- and Linux-based flavors at the same $549.99—or $50 more than the Eee PC 8G.

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