What is the difference between the Asus EEE PC, MSI Wind, Acer Aspire One, and the Medion Akoya Mini? Nothing really – they are all netbooks designed to give you access to the Internet and provide you with core computing functions like word processing. What is different though is the price point, and the new 10-inch netbook from Aldi is by far one of the cheapest we have seen.

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We got the impression that Medion and MSI are using the same manufacturer. The E1210 looks and feels like the Wind we reviewed a couple of weeks ago as it sports the same finish, the same construction, and even the same port layout. The E1210 comes with three USB ports, an Ethernet port, a headphone and microphone jack, a 4-1in-1 card reader, and a VGA-out.

The box contains the netbook, a 3-cell battery, a power adapter, an application and support disc, an OEM version of the OS, a carrying case, and a mini-USB Bluetooth dongle.

A 10.2-inch TFT screen (1024×600), a built-in microphone and webcam, a scaled-down but responsive keyboard, and trackpad are present as soon as the lid is opened. The E1210 also comes with a set of device indicators (Webcam, Power, WLAN, Sleep, Battery, Num Lock, Caps Lock, Scroll Lock, HDD) that tells you the current state of the netbook.


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The Akoya Mini is powered by Intel’s Atom processor (N270) running at 1.6Ghz, comes with a gigabyte of RAM, and a 160GB HDD. It also comes with a draft-N wireless card and Bluetooth support (using mini-USB) for added connectivity.

Like most netbooks in the market, the E1210 runs on Windows XP Home SP3 and comes pre-installed with Corel WordPerfect Office X3, Corel Draw Essential Edition 3, Corel MediaOne, CyberLink PowerDVD 7, and Bullguard Internet Security (90-day free trial).

While small, the 10-inch screen is bright and reproduces colours well. The native resolution of 1024×600 fits any website with ease, although users may encounter problems when using the netbook to edit spreadsheets.


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The Mini only clocked 84 minutes in our movie playback test, which is not a good thing as netbooks should last longer than its notebook counterparts. During ‘normal’ use, the unit lasted for about 130 minutes with the Wi-Fi set to on, word document and IE running, and screen brightness set to maximum. The 3-cell battery is the one to blame for this, and we hope that the guys over at Medion release a 6-cell battery soon to address the issue.

Despite performing as well as its competitors, the Medion Akoya Mini E1210 is a bit ahead of its competition as it offers a large hard drive (160GB), a suite of useful pre-installed software, various accessories (mini-USB Bluetooth dongle and carrying case), and has an attractive price point of $599.

The only problem is the abysmal battery life, which can definitely be a problem for some if the unit is going to be used for watching movies on long commutes.

See page over for product specification and final rating.


Medion Akoya Mini Specifications:
· Intel Atom N270 CPU (1.6GHz)
· 160GB hard drive
· 10-inch TFT screen (1,024×600)
· Windows XP SP3
· Included Software: Corel WordPerfect Office X3, Corel Draw Essential Edition 3, Corel MediaOne, Cyberlink PowerDVD 7, Bullguard Internet Security (90-day trial)
· Connectivity ports: Three USB ports, 4-in-1 card reader, VGA-out, Microphone in, Headphone out

Medion Akoya Mini E1210 | $599 |  | www.aldi.com.au

For: Small form factor; Specifications; Easy-to-use keyboard; Bright screen; Wi-Fi; USB Bluetooth dongle; Affordable
Against: Small trackpad; Abysmal battery life
Conclusion: Netbook for all with Medion Akoya Mini

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