Asus Launches Colorful, Slim Eee PC Flare Netbooks and $399 Ultraportable Laptop

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Asus Monday announced several new models of netbooks with a new "Flare" design and an incredibly priced ultraportable laptop. The Eee PC 1025C, 1025CE, 1225B, and X101CH netbooks will come in a rainbow of colors and sport Ultrabook-like thinness.

Netbooks with Flare

The new Flare netbooks coming in February -- the 1025C and 1025CE -- will still feature the island-style keyboards of Asus' previous seashell netbooks, but now the palm rest will be elevated slightly higher than the keyboard and the ports will be distributed more evenly between the left and right sides of the netbook. Most noticeably, these netbooks will come in not just black or white, but shiny blue, pink, and red.

Fashion and design aside, these new netbooks will feature Intel's new generation of Atom chips, code-named Cedar Trail, for the graphics and application boosts you expect with each processor refresh.

Both the 1025C (MSRP $299) and higher-end 1025CE ($319) are 10.1-inch netbooks with 1024 pixels by 600 pixels resolutions, 1GB of memory, and 320GB of hard drive storage space. The 1025CE upgrades the processor from a 1.6GHz Atom N2600 to a 1.86GHz Atom N2800 dual-core GPU.

Say all you want about netbooks' underwhelming performance: When it comes to battery life, these ultraportables are hard to beat. You can expect around 9.5 hours of battery life from the 1025CE and slightly over 10 hours for the 1025C, plus carrying them around shouldn't be too hard: they weigh just 2.7 pounds.

New Low-Cost Netbook

Asus also announced an entry-level X101CH netbook without the Flare moniker. This entry-level netbook keeps the original seashell design but has the same specs as the 1025C, while retailing for a bit less at $269.

An Ultraportable Under $400

If you want just a little more screen real estate, the Asus Eee PC 1225B is a 12.1 inch ultraportable with netbook-like prices, starting at $399. The Eee PC 1225B is thin (0.91 inches) and light (3.1 pounds) and runs AMD’s E-450 dual-core APU. The laptop comes with 2GB of memory, a 320GB hard drive, and a standard 1366 pixels by 768 pixels resolution display.

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