HP has confirmed that it won't be launching its latest netbook, the Mini 1000, with Linux in the UK and has slapped a recession-busting, credit-crunch cringing £450 price tag on the only Windows XP version sold in Blighty.
In a statement to ZDNet UK, an HP spokesperson said that the company will not sell Linux versions of the netbook in "quite a few of the European markets" but punters in the US can buy the device preloaded with a customised version of Ubuntu.
The Mobile Internet Experience version (or MIE) addresses the home user market and HP decided against launching a WIndows XP version of the Mini 1000, fearing that it could compete with HP's other netbook, the Compaq 700.
The £450 Mini 1000 Vivienne Tam edition netbook is a very flamboyant model with flowers and a pinkish red enclosure. It comes with Windows XP Home, 1GB memory, a 60GB HDD, 3 USB 2.0 slots (including a recessed USB one) and a 10.1-inch LCD screen.
MIE is based on Ubunty 8.04 and replaces the popular GNOME desktop with HP's own proprietary and customised dashboard, powered by Microsoft Live Search. HP will make the MI interface available on its website should users of older Mini Note netbooks want to give it a try.
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HP's rationale for not launching the Ubuntu version of the the HP Mini 1000 is puzzling. The Vivienne Tam edition netbook is far too eccentric for most users while the HP Compaq 700 has yet to be sold in the retail market. In the meanwhile, it seems that HP is trying to get rid of old Mini Note 2133. Ebuyer is selling the laptop with Linux and the Via C7 processor for under £190.