The Eee PC madness continues. There must be 20+ Eee PC web sites by now and every day there’s at least one good set of new information. I’ve even seen a couple of Eee PC books on Amazon which just shows what sort of a market there must be out there. The Eee PC ecosystem alone must be ten times larger that that of the traditional ultra mobile PC market and that’s not including the rest of the netbook market! There’s no way we can highlight all the news here in the front page but we are trying to get all the good article links into the links database so that you have a nice central point to find them all when needed. Today, it’s the turn of Blogeee who have written up, what looks like an extensive review on the French language website. One part of it I do understand is the battery life testing section which highlights the extreme end of the battery capacity issue where some users are getting their Eee PC 900 with a 15% smaller capacity battery than was shipped with the Eee PC 701.
In the worst case, a video playback test, the Eee PC 900 was returning under 1 hour with the 4400mah battery which I find a little too low. In fact, if you look closely at the differences between the 4400 and 5200mah results, there’s more like a 30% capacity difference than 15%. I suspect that their 4400mah battery was a little worn. Either that or the real capacity of the battery is even less than 4400mah. The other possibility is that the 4400mah battery is dropping below the power-down level far sooner than the 5200mah battery which looks to be returning results just as expected. 2.5-3hrs isn’t bad at all for an office test but look at how much difference a web-session makes. It’s a result of the Wifi radio and rich web pages that do that. Web surfing is a CPU-heavy operation these days. [Thoughts about Atom after the break…]
So what should we expect from an Atom version of the Eee PC 900? Well, we’ve talked about this before and warned that it might not bring any significant improvement at all. While the Atom core itself might be more efficient, it’s less powerful on a clock-per-clock basis so in the Diamondville version, will have to be run at 1.6Ghz. It’s also stripped of some of the power-saving features like speed-stepping. At best, the CPU will save an average 0.5W which in a system that consumes between 10 and 14 watts in-use (idling to about 8W I estimate) will return about a 5% battery life improvement. What I hope we will see is better engineering on the motherboard with more efficient Wifi and power circuitry. Together, it could add up to something a bit more significant but if the shortage of high capacity batteries continues, all these calculations are a waste of time!