According to the folks over at The Register, HP won’t be bringing its otherwise smashing Mini 1000 netbook to the UK, at least with Linux onboard. The forthcoming model, the Mini 2140, will also only be sold with Windows.
The Mi netbook we heard about earlier this month will still offer Linux as a download, but to get hold of it you’ll have already paid for a copy of Windows, and we doubt many non-hardcore users will make the effort.
That leaves just the Mini 2133 available with SuSE Linux, and given the 2140 is the update of that model, it looks like Linux will soon disappear as an option for HP netbook owners – out of the box at least.
So that means it’s speculation time, because Windows XP, like the old family pet, ain’t going to be around forever. Vista is an unlikely low-end netbook substitute (we’re not sure what Sony is thinking putting it in the VAIO P), and if a lovely Linux netbook OS is off the table, that leaves just one option: Windows 7.
That’s not so bad – quite the opposite – but that does mean HP’s netbooks will never be the cheapest on the market since there’ll be a licence fee to Microsoft involved. Something to bear in mind before slapping down your cash. We’ll keep you posted.