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Intel intros dotage.station

Senior citizens, watch out

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The branded Intel box running Linux, first revealed by The Register last year, has become generally available for system providers to resell.

The machine, manufactured by an unnamed third party, already has design wins, said Marta Hasler, an Intel executive at the Home Group division of the company.

The appliance, only available so far in a "beautiful Intel metallic blue" is being re-packaged in the US by Sageport, and aimed at senior citizens over the age of 55, and in France by e-laser. There is also a win with a Spanish provider, Hasler said.

The machine has one USB port, a CRT screen, a 4.3Gb hard drive and comes with a Celeron processor at an unknown clock speed.

But, said Hasler, the speed of the processor is not important. While the speed will change, it is not being pushed on a Megahurtz basis because it is being offered to consumers who aren't aware of the PC platform, Hasler said.

The cost of the device will depend on bundles the service providers offer, varying from zero dollars to $500 or so, if they decide to sell the dot.station as a separate number.

While it supports DSL and phone line technologies, ISDN is not supported, while the only software offered with it are a Web browser and email software.

Senior citizens browsing the Web will be able to download files, but it will not be possible to install executable programs, said Hasler.

Hasler said that Intel may introduce other colours and is also toying with the idea of introducing an LCD based system.

There's a phone handset on the top of the box, just above the Intel logo. ®

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