VIA Announces The OpenBook
Just in time for Computex, VIA Technologies has announced the OpenBook, which is a new Ultra-Mobile PC (UMPC) they are offering to compete with Intel's Menlow UMPCs. Making the VIA OpenBook "open" is making the CAD files to the external panels on this notebook's reference design available under the Creative Commons license (so that distributors or end-users may easily customize this sub-notebook) and the OpenBook will ship with an unspecified selection of Linux distributions (gOS is likely one of them). However, if you want that VIA OpenBook to be a "ClosedBook", VIA will also be shipping Windows XP and Windows Vista on this product.
The hardware behind the VIA OpenBook includes a VIA C7-M ULV processor, VIA VX800 Chipset, WiMAX, 3G wireless, and a 4-cell Lithium Ion battery. VIA claims this new notebook has a maximum power draw of just 3.5 Watts and it can idle with as little as 0.1 Watts. Pricing, however, has not been set.
More information on the VIA OpenBook is available from the press release or the new OpenBook website.
For the record, earlier this year VIA had announced their new open-source intentions but that was greeted by some mixed feelings from developers. Since these new open efforts have come about, VIA has contributed a 16,434 line kernel frame-buffer driver but we're still waiting on more code and technical documentation from this company.
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