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Dell and Acer are about to join the rush to producing mini-notebook computers that will compete with the highly successful Asus Eee.

Dell and Acer are about to join the rush to producing mini-notebook computers that will compete with the highly successful Asus Eee.

Dell CEO Michael Dell last week briefly showed his company’s device, pictured, to a blogger for the Web gadget rumour site Gizmodo during The Wall Street Journal’s D: Al Things Digital show in California, but declined to give any details. It was clad in a distinctive candy-red finish, suggesting it’s aimed at a consumer rather than business market.

Gizmodo’s Brian Lam said he saw three USB ports, a card reader, a VGA out, and an Ethernet connection. US reports say it is small enough to compete with HP’s 2133 and Asus’ Eee PC.


Click to enlarge

The HP machine sports an 8.9-inch display, while the Eee PC comes in both
8.9- and 7-inch versions.

Asus sparked the sub-$500 mini-notebook craze with the introduction of the Eee PC in October 2007. Since then, the Taiwanese company has sold more than 350,000 units, and says it’s on track to sell between 3 million and 5 million notebooks by the end of this year.

The Dell appearance was swiftly followed by leaked photos of what is claimed to be the Acer Aspire Mini-Note. It’s said to have a 9-inch screen, a small keyboard and ­ under the hood ­ an Intel Atom processor.

The Acer machine is reportedly being made by Quanta, the Taiwanese company that makes many boxes for HP, Dell and Apple, among others.

It is expected to have its first public outing at the Computex show in Taipei this week, along with about 10 ultra-portable models from other companies.

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