Simmbook Netbook for Emerging Markets


IBM and Indian company Simmtronics are marketing their 10" netbook at a cost under $200.

The Simmbook netbook with a 10.1" screen at 1024 x 600 pixels (VSVGA) works with the Atom N270 processor (1.6 GHz and 533 MHz FSB), a GByte of DDR2 RAM (maximum 2 GBytes with a slot) and a 160-GByte SATA hard drive. Along with these are a 1.3 megapixel camera, a 3-in-1 (MMC/SD/MS/MS Pro) card reader (some manufacturers would call it 4-in-1), and three USB 2.0 ports. The 1.2 kilogram device also includes a Kensington locking port, but is rather sluggish in LAN (10/100 Ethernet controller) and wireless (802.11b/g) modes. Preinstalled next to Ubuntu Linux is the IBM Client for Smart Work, with Lotus Symphony and access to IBMs LotusLive cloud-based collaboration tool. Of course, nothing would prevent a user from buying additional Lotus applications.

The product is intended to fill the gap between low cost and performance with its equipment and preinstalled apps. The partners are targeting the product to small businesses, non-profits and educational institutions that cannot otherwise afford computerized collaboration resources. The Simmbook is available through an online order form currently in India, African countries, Thailand and Vietnam. IBM and Simmtronics, who had the netbook certified at Canonical for Ubuntu, are looking for additional partners to market the netbook in other countries at a competitive price.

( Anika Kehrer)

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