Today Digitimes reports that Asus „8.9 inch second generation Eee PC line up will include Touchscreen panels and possible GPS support“. Digitimes report is highly credible, I think. This is the same info I heard from Asus at Cebit three weeks ago, unfortunately without being allowed to post it ;).
It is not clearly stated in the quote but I’d like to point out that this means that touch functionality will be an option („lineup will include“) and not available for all different upcoming Eee PC models. Note that Kevin Lin, Vice President Sale, projects a 500 $ price (around 400 Euro). Launch to be expected in May or June.
As Microsoft OS is much more demanding for smooth usage than Linux, Asus is forced to increase RAM and flash disk size for those models. Digitimes relies on „industry sources“ saying that minimum RAM will be 1 GB and flash disk 8-12 GB.
I see some pretty nice usage scenarios esp. when you set up synchronization and make your important stuff available online for your workforce, esp. with also planned integrated 3G (UMTS) option.
Must have for Tablet fans. Great breakthrough for Tablet platform. Hard times for FSC and their new 8.9 inch Lifebook P1620 with much powerful hardware (would that matter for just taking some notes, word processing and E-Mail?), but in a price range far beyond 2000 Euro.
BTW, if you are an experienced Bastler, there is no need to wait: Take a look at these nice videos and create your current Eee PC a Tablet PC :)