updated 11:05 am EDT, Thu June 5, 2008
Dell mini Inspiron in Aug
Dell's recently uncovered mini Inspiron system will arrive by mid-summer but with unusual sacrifices to reach its goals, says APC in an interview with the PC designer. The still unnamed micro notebook is now known to be scheduled for a launch no later than August and has the advantage of a much larger keyboard than normal for an 8.9-inch portable through its dropping the traditional row of F-series keys; the change is necessary to allow the remaining keys to be larger, Dell senior VP Alex Gruzen explains.
Instead of using the Fn (function) key to emulate the F-keys, the button triggers different functions mapped to media keys on the system, such as toggles for brightness, external displays, and wireless.
Few other details are available, though the company may put the mini notebook within the Inspiron line and already plans to give customers a similar option to offer different colors for the outer lid. Earlier predictions would have Dell use an Intel Atom as the processor and offer the system with either Ubuntu Linux, to save costs and push into the developing world, or Windows XP for the company's more traditional audience.