Samsung preps 11.6-inch Ion netbook

When it comes to netbooks, Samsung isn't afraid to experiment. The firm was one of the first big players to use Via's Nano processor, and now, says it's cooking up an Nvidia Ion-powered laptop with an 11.6" display.

Dubbed the NP-510-KA02, or N510 for short, the system is reportedly on track to launch in October. Its display will have a 1366x768 resolution, and Samsung will couple the Ion chipset with a 1.66GHz Atom N280 processor, 1GB of RAM, 160GB of mechanical storage, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and a six-cell battery.

On the software side, mentions Windows XP Home Edition—a strange choice given the purported launch time frame, which is right around Windows 7's October 22 release.

Quoting anonymous sources and Google's cache of an Italian e-tail listing, the site goes on to say that Samsung will charge €570 for the N510. To put that figure in perspective, Asus' Eee PC 1000HE is around €350 in Germany and $384 in the States. If the N510 ends up costing 63% more on both sides of the Atlantic, you'll have to shell out $626 for it in the U.S. Not cheap for an Atom-powered netbook, even one with good graphics and a larger-than-usual display.

Update: Nvidia has sent us an image of "the upcoming Samsung ION notebook." The company says it can't share a model name or specifications yet, but this could well be the same system. See the image gallery below for a high-res photo.

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