Have you been waiting patiently for the past year and change for Asus to get around to releasing the 10 inch convertible netbook/tablet that it first introduced at CES 2009? Asus polished the Eee PC T101MT up a bit for CES 2010 by adding a new Intel Atom N450 processor, Windows 7, and a multitouch display. And the company put out a video this week to demonstrate the computer’s touchscreen user interface. But the T101MT still isn’t available for purchase.
Asus promises that the netbook should be available this year. But if you just can’t wait, it turns out there are other options. Most of them are either really expensive, such as the Gigabyte TouchNote T1028, which sells for $728 at Amazon, or cheap computers from Chinese companies you’ve never heard of. But if you’re wiling to take a risk, some of those Chinese 10 inch tablet-style netbooks are available in the US through companies that import products from China.
Here are a few models I came across today:
- 10.2″ netbook w/1.6GHz Atom N270 CPU, 1024 x 600 pixel touchscreen display, 160GB hard drive, 1GBof RAM, 802.11b/g WiFi and 3 cell, 2 hour battery for $429.99 from ChinaGrabber
- 10.2″ netbook w/1.6GHz Atom N270 CPU, 1GB of RAM, 160GB hard drive, 1024 x 600 pixel touchscreen display, 802.11b/g/ WiFi and 3 cell, 3 hour battery for $469.99 from ChinaGrabber
- 10.2″ netbook w/1.6GHz Atom N270 CPU, 1024 x 600 pixel touchscreen display, 802.11a/b/g WiFi, 1GB of RAM, 160GB hard drive, 3 cell, 2.7 hour battery for $365 from HightonTech
All three notebooks come with Windows XP or Linux, so if you’re holding out for Windows 7 you’ll need to install it yourself or wait for Asus or another PC maker to offer the 10 inch tablet of your dreams (hopefully with a higher capacity battery). You could also look at the Asus Eee PC T91MT, which has a 9 inch display, a smaller keyboard, and a slower processor.
I should also point out that while ChinaGrabber offers free shipping, HightonTech charges $69 to deliver a netbook to a US address.