When is a Net PC not a Net PC? The answer, apparently, depends on which PC vendor you talk to. Gateway 2000 introduced its stab at the potentially lucrative Net PC market yesterday with a machine called the E1000 at a price less than $900.
But Compaq, which only a month ago tried to buy Gateway 2000, said today that the product is not really a Net PC at all.
According to Steve Torbe, Compaq UK?s product manager in charge of commercial desktops, the specification includes an ISA expansion slot, which means the Gateway offering was not a Net PC.
Gateway 2000?s machine runs on a 166MHz Pentium, and comes with 16Mbytes of memory, a 1.2Gbytes hard drive, a floppy drive, integrated 10/100Mbps Ethernet, built-in audio and a PCI and a PCI/ISA expansion slot. Earlier this week, Acer also introduced a NetPC,which it is selling for $800 and which includes a monitor.
Torbe said: ?We?re part of the group that designed the specification. The spec says ISA bus slots must not be provided. Part of the issue is there are a lot of column inches about the total cost of ownership.?
But whether Gateway 2000's offering is or is not a Net PC, Compaq has still not released its own unit. ?We?ll certainly ship a product in the second half of the year,? Torbe said.
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