HP's Linux Laptops Prove Popular
Public demand for the low-cost Linux-based laptops Hewlett-Packard began selling in Thailand earlier this month has been "overwhelming," a company representative said this week.
HP launched the $468 notebooks nearly two weeks ago as part of a Thai government-led initiative to give the public access to affordable computers. The program is being steered by Thailand's Information, Communications, and Technology (ICT) ministry, which set price and feature requirements for the ICT-branded computers.
A representative for HP's Asian Pacific group said Monday that demand for the laptops has so far been overwhelming, with local press reporting that over 19,300 computers were booked on the first day of the program. HP declined to say exactly how many of the computers it is producing, adding that it is still in talks with ICT program directors.
However, the Bangkok Post reported in its online edition last week that demand was so high that the ICT feared that HP could not keep up with the orders. The Thai daily went on to say that Dell Computer Thailand and the Association of Thai Computer Manufacturers could be in line to pick up production.
The notebooks come equipped with an 800-MHz processor from Via Technologies, 128MB of RAM, a 20GB hard drive, and a
The laptops are priced at about $468, but can also be bundled with an HP Deskjet 3325 printer valued at about $72, HP said.
With low cost as a requirement, the choice to go with a Linux OS, which can be freely distributed and does not require licensing fees, seemed a natural choice, according to analysts.
The Linux adoption could also