Compaq has taken a leaf out of Apple's book with a new line of consumer PCs, including a colourful new Internet appliance.
The appliance, which is due to be demonstrated at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas later today, looks a little like a toaster and is blue, rather than the usual PC beige. It is described by the PC giant as "retro".
The Presario EZ2000 range includes Intel Celeron and Pentium III processors and what Compaq describes as a new "Digital Dashboard", which the company said is designed to provide feedback to the consumer, much like the dashboard in a car.
Instead of having to wait for a connection to be established to check email, the Digital Dashboard will automatically "wake up" the PC by dialling out to the consumer's email account to notify household members (up to 10) that email is waiting for them.
The range comes in two models featuring either an Intel Celeron processor or an Intel Pentium III. Both be available in late January. Pricing begins at $999.
Mike Larson, Compaq senior vice president and general manager, Consumer Business Unit, said in a statement: "Today's announcement is the first in a series of innovative products that will help consumers maximise their connected e-lifestyle."
In addition, the company added new models to its Presario consumer desktop and notebook range and launched a new multifunction device for printing, faxing copying and scanning.
At the same time chip giant Intel announced a new range of Web appliances, running on the Linux operating system.
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