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Using the Eee PC 1201T

The ASUS Eee PC 1201T proved to be very practical to use. The keyboard is equivalent in size to the ones found in laptops with 14" screens, and typing is smooth and comfortable.

The 12.1" LED-backlit screen with 1366×768 resolution is excellent, being clear, bright and with nice-looking colors. Unlike most portables with 10" screens, the higher resolution available on the Eee PC 1201T lets you to surf the web without the need to roll the screen to the right and to the left all the time, and makes some tasks like photo viewing and editing easier. However, the relatively small screen with a high resolution can be a problem if you have sight problems, mostly if you use it far from your eyes.

The AMD Athlon Neo MV-40 CPU, although not being focus on performance, proved to be agile in simple tasks, like text editing and web surfing. At no moment at all we felt the computer "sluggish".

The integrated video, generated by the chipset, is based on the Radeon HD 3200 engine (DirectX 10.1-compatible), with good performance, keeping in mind this is not a computer to play games.

The operating system that comes with the Eee PC 1201T is the Windows 7 Starter. This version is very practical for general use. Unlike the Windows XP Starter and the Vista Starter, it has no limit on the number of open applications, which makes it usable in the real world. The main limitations of this version are the lack of the Aero graphical interface, the inability of changing the wallpaper (which has no point, being actually a disrespect to the consumer), the lack of multi monitor support, and the inability of changing users without logging off. These limitations are no big deal in an operating system that is targeted to basic usage on a simple netbook.

The computer comes with some programs preinstalled. There are demo versions of the Office 2007 and Trend Micro Security. The Eee PC 1201T also comes with the TotalMedia Theatre 3 DVD player (which has questionable utility in a computer with no optical drive, but it is included because Windows 7 Starter has no support for playing DVDs), Windows Live, Microsoft Works, Skype, and some games and utilities from ASUS. Some of those programs are useful and most them don’t cause problems. So, you can say the Eee PC 1201T comes ready for basic usage, as long as you get an office suite and an antivirus program, or buy the licenses for the ones that come installed.

The major issue of this netbook is the lack of an HDMI port, which could allow you to connect it to a high-definition TV using the highest video and audio quality possible. We also missed an eSATA port.

Battery time was reasonable, lasting for about four hours of web surfing.

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Rafael Otto Coelho is a physicist with a master’s degree in Education, and is a college professor in Brazil.