ASUS Eee PC 1015PEM – Why it’s an important upgrade

Nick Holland
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ASUS announced its Eee PC 1015PEM yesterday that uses with Intel’s latest Atom N550 dual core CPU. It’s actually the first netbook with this important CPU to market, but after a few years of Atom-Atom-Atom netbooks, you’ll be forgiven for missing why this is significant. After all, ASUS also already has a “dual core netbook”: the Eee PC 1215N, which features an upgraded Nvidia ‘Next Generation’ ION graphics as well. However the 1015PEM has several important hardware advantages in its favour and another tempting feature, which we’ll save until later.

Better battery life + more CPU horsepower = Win-Win.

The advantage the new Atom N550 brings is the fact it halves the CPU power use versus the “desktop” D525 – it’s designed specifically for smaller, more portable product. Yes, it’s missing a tiny bit of clock speed versus the N450, but the doubling of raw CPU horsepower means it can handle more advanced software and be used more like a fuller laptop without the weight and size. The lower power use, and specialist design choices like an LED backlit display and ASUS’ own Super Hybrid Engine technology, also gives it an all-day battery life of between 9-13 hours depending on use and battery choice. It simply doesn’t need an ugly, oversized battery that detrimentally adds to its weight. The 1015PEM with Atom N550 means there’s no need for this – it’s truly thin and light.

Small size doesn’t mean limited storage

While reduced in size doesn’t mean you can’t live out of your netbook – it’s entirely possible with a 250/320GB hard drive and 500GB more ASUS online storage. In fact, you could backup the entire hard drive and still have space spare (providing your ISP doesn’t complain)! It’s not just the physical small and light netbook design that suits travellers, the ASUS Cloud storage is a perfect match for it. Either have everything with you so it’s always a fingers flick away even when you have no internet access; use the online space as a backup. Or, be more secure and take nothing with you! Have it all in Cloud storage behind password protection, so even if your 1015PEM gets stolen the more valuable personal assets are locked away safe.

10 inches = True ultra-portability

The netbook market was launched by ASUS to feed the desire for ultra portability. The scope of this range has since grown massively thanks to smartphones and more recently, tablets, however retaining a level of inter-operability between a Windows desktop and your travel companion is essential to many – and this is where a netbook still comes in handy. Now, 12 inches is still portable but it’s not ‘slip in your bag and forget about it’ portable – which a 10 inch is. Also, a 10 inch is, well, it’s no generic plastic box. The 1015PEM is more elegant and in some cases slightly more feminine, which also brings me to the last (tempting) point…

A choice of colours = Style to suit all tastes

People identify themselves with their smartphones, with their tablet, even their choice of games console and favoured operating system (do you like Windows 7? Would you prefer MacOS?), so why settle for a-n-other black or boring grey piece of plastic when you can add a flair of personality thanks to colours like silky red, midnight blue, or glossy pink or white. There’s also the matt white and glossy or matt black finishes for those who prefer something a little more refined and understated, but choice is always good thing; you’re not limited to only black or white. Just as ASUS launched the netbook revolution three years ago and was the first to use Intel’s Atom CPU when it arrived a year later, it still continues to push the ultra-portable boundaries with more reasons than ever to consider one over ‘a-n-other Atom netbook’. Evidently the CPU is still an important focal point, but it’s not the only point of Eee PCs and the 1015PEM.

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