Instead, consumers will only be able to buy a designer edition of the HP mini 1000 laptop running Microsoft’s Windows XP operating system when the computer goes on sale later this month. The HP Compaq Mini 700 will also only come in a Windows XP version, while the HP mini 2140 will come with the choice of Windows XP or Windows Vista. It means that the only HP laptop available in the UK running a Linux operating system is the year-old HP mini 2133, which has been superseded by the Intel Atom-powered HP mini 1000. The announcement has come as a surprise to technology experts. Netbooks – small, cheap, ultra-portable laptops that lack storage but are perfect for connecting to the internet when on the move – have emerged from nowhere to become one of the best-selling consumer electronics segments of the last year.
One of the reason these netbooks are so cheap is because they run versions of the free, open-source Linux operating system, rather than expensively licensed versions of Microsoft’s software. The Linux platform can also be stripped back and optimised to run quickly and efficiently on low-powered machines, some of which struggle with the heavier processing demands of the Windows operating systems. HP did not say why it had taken the decision not to release Linux-based versions of its new netbooks in the UK, but it did say in a statement that it believed that Windows-powered laptops “better address the market and consumer needs” of British buyers. However, as many technology websites have pointed out, the biggest-selling netbook in the UK is the Acer Aspire One – which runs a version of the Linux operating system.
( www.telegraph.co.uk )