Dell confirms cut-price 'netbook' plans

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Dell confirms cut-price 'netbook' plans

Dell has thrown down the 'netbook' gauntlet to Asus, MSI and HP after confirming plans for a cut-price mini-notebook on the company's blog..

The PC manufacturer made the official announcement after chief executive Michael Dell was seen brandishing a mini-laptop at this week's All Things Digital conference in Carlsbad, California.

Details are few and far between, but the Dell blog revealed that the company has "positioned it as the perfect device for the next billion internet users".

Images of the pint-sized notebook appear to indicate that it will come in a choice of two colours: black or red.

The 'netbooks' bear a distinct resemblance to the Mini Inspiron and show a device with three USB ports, SD card reader, VGA output and Ethernet connections.

However, the company has made no formal announcement on specifications or pricing.

Dell's move follows similar announcements from Asus and HP. Asus believes it is on target to sell almost two million Eee PCs in the first six months of this year at US$299 or US$549 depending on specs.

The growing momentum behind this new genre of notebooks has been driven in part by the availability of low-cost chips from Intel and Via.

"I have not seen energy like this from our customers in a long, long time," Intel chief executive Paul Otellini told Associated Press. "Everyone views this as being hyper-expansive to the existing market."

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