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Asus to launch smartbook in Q1 2010
According to the China Times, Asus CEO Jerry Shen told investors at a conference in Taipei that Asus will enter the smartbook market in the first quarter of 2010.
Shen told the crowd that the new device should cost NT$6000 (around $185), and it will apparently be based on Qualcomm's Snapdragon platform. Shen said that the smartbook category has huge growth potential and that the new Asus smartbook could create a market boom, much like the original Eee PC in its heyday. This is not something we expected to hear from Shen, as he was all but optimistic regarding smartbooks in previous statements, saying that he saw no market for them.
Asus did show off an ARM-based smartbook at Computex, but since then there was no official mention off it. Punters speculate that Intel pressured Asus to stick to Atoms and forget about smartbooks altogether, but it seems Asus quietly continued development anyway.