And another PC manufacturer begins their journey down the road more travelled. NEC has announced their own entry into the netbook market, the Versa N1100. It's got the usual suspects in terms of components: Intel Atom processor, XP, 8.9-inch screen, 160GB HDD, Wi-Fi and webcam...
But it does try and differentiate itself (in the press release at least) with gesture-enabled NX pad and a keyboard with a 17mm pitch. Now while my years as an cadet at school (and my adolescent mind) tell me that a 17mm pitch isn't much for a tent, it's probably something special for a netbook keyboard. There's also an Impact resistant design, which I take to mean it can handle being bumped against a pitched tent...
$749 is what the N1100 will set you back when it launches in the second half of November.
NEC Computers Announces Its First Netbook PC
The NEC VERSA N1100 enters the Netbook market with a clear focus on usability
8.9" WSVGA display (1024 x 600) with Anti-Glare Coating Intel(R) Atom(TM) processor N270 160GB HDD and 1GB DDR2 RAM Impact resistant design Enhanced usability with gesture enabled "NX Pad" and Keyboard with 17mm pitch Wi-Fi and Webcam built in Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Home Edition Service Pack 2 1 Year National On-Site Warranty
Sydney, October 17, 2008 - NEC Computers (NEC) today announced the launch of the VERSA N1100 Netbook designed for users requiring a compact, lightweight, and robust solution for their cost effective mobile computing needs.
Compact size and light weight are the cornerstones of Netbook design and the NEC VERSA N1100 delivers on both counts with dimensions of 250mm (W) x 176.5mm (H) x 31.3-36.5mm (H) and a weight of only 1.17Kg including battery. NEC enhances the Netbook platform with the VERSA N1100 by improving usability in a number of ways. The keyboard has a key pitch of 17mm making it only around 10% less than a standard QWERTY keyboard and combined with a 2 mm keystroke, users will find typing easy and comfortable considering the physically small size of the device. The standard glide pad was replaced in favour of NEC's "NX Pad" adding gesture functions that enable intuitive operations dramatically improving ease of operation; for example, magnification or reduction of fonts of web pages is achieved by simultaneously moving two fingers apart or together on the NX Pad. The mouse pointer can even be quickly moved to the edge of the screen by pulling the finger away from the NX Pad.
Additional features of the VERSA N1100 include Power-Off USB charging allowing users to charge digital music players and other electronic devices through a USB connector even when the PC's power is off. Built-in 802.11b/g wireless LAN and Gigabit LAN, High Resolution Web camera and Microphone and an Anti-glare LCD panel designed to reduce reflection.
Understanding that durability is a key requirement for the truly mobile customer, the NEC VERSA N1100 has been engineered to withstand up to 150 kgf(*1) of pressure to help it stand up the rigours of a highly mobile lifestyle. The striking contrast of gloss piano black cover and white keyboard means not only is it durable, but uniquely stylish as well.
"The launch of the NEC VERSA N1100 adds a new category to NEC's extensive range of personal computing products, catering to a new segment of users with a new set of needs. Users can now enjoy the total freedom of internet access and replying to emails on the move. This is representative of our continuous dedication and commitment to the personal computer market" said Mr Darren Brain, Marketing Manager of NEC Computers Australasia.
The NEC VERSA N1100 features the Intel(R) Atom(TM) processor N270, 1GB of DDR2 RAM a HDD capacity of 160 GB, and Genuine Microsoft(R) Windows(R) XP Home Edition Service Pack 2.
The first model in the series becomes available for sale in Australia in the second half of November 2008 with an expected retail price of $749
NEC VERSA N1100 Key Technology Specifications
Intel® Atom™ processor N270 1.60GHz Genuine Microsoft® Windows® XP Home Edition SP2 8.9" WSVGA display (1024 x 600) with Anti-Glare Coating Intel® 945GSE Express Chipset 160GB SATA Hard Disk Drive (5400RPM) 1GB DDR2 RAM 2 Speakers (1W each) 3 USB 2.0 Ports Gigabit LAN and 802.11b/g Wi-Fi 3in1 Memory Card Reader (MS/SD/MMC) 0.3MP Webcam 3 Cell Li-Ion Battery
(*1) This figure was obtained through in-house pressure tests. It is not a guarantee against damage or malfunction under actual usage conditions.