We already know a small Chinese company is prepping a super-cheap netbook based on Google’s Android platform. Could Dell be doing the same? The guys at Engadget spotted a reference to an Android-powered Dell netbook in a press release from a mobile software firm.
Bsquare’s press release is up on MarketWire, and its title leaves little to the imagination: "Bsquare to Port Adobe Flash Lite on New Google Android Netbook for Dell." The document mentions a port of Adobe Flash Lite 3.17 to "Dell Netbooks running Google’s Android platform," which apparently include the "Mini Inspiron 910"—a likely reference to the Inspiron Mini 9.
Right now, the cheapest flavor of the Mini 9 comes with Ubuntu Linux 8.04 and costs $279. That’s not too far off the aforementioned Chinese firm’s $250 target, except the Dell system has an Atom processor, 1GB of RAM, and an 8.9" display. The question remains whether Android would be a good choice for such a relatively full-featured netbook, especially since Ubuntu comes with a versions of Firefox, OpenOffice.org, and other open-source desktop apps.