Mini laptops hit Jakarta

Moch. N. Kurniawan ,  The Jakarta Post , 

Four months ago, only a limited number of mini laptops were available in Jakarta.However, over the past month, in April, when I regularly visited Mangga Dua, Ambassador Mall and Ratu Plaza in Jakarta, most of computer shops in those malls have displayed mini laptops in their cabinets.

The 7-inch Asus’ Eee PC 710 series, the 7-inch Kohjinsha’s SA Series and the 5.6-inch Fujitsu LifeBook U810 were mostly displayed in the computer shops’ showcases.

The 11-inch Sony Vaio TZ150N was also there, but the three mini laptops were much different because their prices were one-third or half cheaper than that of the Rp 20 million Vaio TZ150N.



Asus’ Eee PC710 series, for example, were sold between Rp 3.5 million (US$370) and Rp 4.3 million depending on the size of the solid state disk.It was a fair price although Asus Indonesia failed to meet its promise made in a computer expo last year that the Eee PC710 price will not exceed Rp 3.5 million.

Asus Indonesia marketing specialist Titi Kristiani said recently that the Eee PC710 display at many computer shops just reflected the growing demand for the mini laptop.

The Eee PC 710 sales in Indonesia had reached tens of thousands of units after its introduction in November last year, Titi said.



“The response here is positive and we are quite optimistic to sell more Eee PC710,” she said.The strengths of the Eee PC 710 were its small size, its 0.92-kilogram weight and its low price, Titi added.

Besides, the Eee PC710 design is also relatively stylish, although it is made from plastic. Its 4 Giga Byte (GB) solid state disk, possible to be upgraded to 16GB, is also enough for basic applications such as word, power point, excel, and acrobat reader. A Wi-Fi connection is also included in the laptop.

Its weaknesses are the 800 x 480 resolution, forcing readers to scroll right and left to read a folio-size story, and Linux by default, making it difficult to connect with 3G modem and
compelling users to install Window to do so. A DVD drive is also absent due to its low price.

If you expect a mini laptop that has better specifications, Fujitsu LifeBook U810 would be a good choice, but its price is more expensive, around Rp 9.3 million.

LifeBook U810 key features are its Window by default, 40GB hard drive, 1024 x 600 resolution, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and 360 rotational view and touch screen technology, but its 5.6 inch screen might be just too small.



Meanwhile, Kohjinsha SA series, with the same applications and features as Fujitsu LifeBook U810, could be bought at around Rp 7.9 million, but the brand is not yet well known here.Kohjinsha SA1F00 WS offers a touch screen, 1024 x 600 resolution, wireless LAN, Bluetooth, and 100GB hard drive.

If Kohjinsha is still a bit too much for your budget, Asus has another novel answer. It has improved its Eee PC features by launching a 9-inch, 1024 x 600 resolution Eee PC in mid-April in Taipei, and planning to release it here in early June.



This is clearly an Asus’ response on a heating competition as Hewlett Packard, Intel, Dell, and local brand Zyrex will also introduce their mini low cost laptops in Indonesia.Hewlett Packard Indonesia market development manager Martin Wibisono said in a recent interview his firm saw an increasing demand for mini low cost laptop.

“We will introduce our mini low cost laptop here in mid-May,” he said.



He did not describe the mini laptop, but released a review about the new 9-inch HP 2133 mini note PC, saying its best assets were its unique keyboard, which manages to fit in full-size key, and its magnesium alloy chassis.While the original HP2133 price is $499 for Linux version and $599 for Window version, mini laptop users here might have to spend $599 to buy a HP2133, Linux version.

Mini laptops are indeed seeking for their lovers in Jakarta.




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