HP Notebook for only $399


HP dealsI just got a flyer in my email this morning from HP laying out some pretty sweet back-to-school deals on notebook computers.  You can pick up a Compaq V2000Z for only $399 after rebates and get a free all-in-one printer to boot.  It doesn’t have the latest and greatest components but it’s listed as “Vista capable” so it can’t be too bad. 




Oops, of course I meant the >Fujitsu< is awesome looking…

Now the trick is finding “real” value in such a purchase. I’m not as adventurous as Kevin to just go buy one, and then figure out where and how to use it later! But thank goodness for his adventurous nature so we all get some nice glimpses of the gadget we all wish we had!


That Toshiba is awesome. The price is still high for me, but reasonable relative to what it seems to deliver. Gee thanks… now I have one more finance-busting potential impulse purchase that is whispering in my ear! ;-)

While the UMPC does not rule out various keyboard-included form factors, of course it’s not required. But one industry insider said that the new processors coming out will not only improve battery life, but will also enable those integrated or attached keyboard designs because they are better supported in the hardware.

We might just see my dream tablet at $1000 in the next round of devices, whether it’s a small convertible or a “real” UMPC. I sure hope we get them before my eyesight is so bad I can’t read a tiny screen anymore!!


Bob, UMPCs by design do not have an attached keyboard, although in the future we may see some smaller UMPCs appear with integrated keyboards. The specs you have outlined describe the Fujitsu P1510D to a T. It’s over $1,000 but it is EXACTLY the device you describe.


I am basically looking for a reasonable notebook replacement, but small, with great battery life, and with the UMPC tablet features that would really drive the purchase. That characterization pretty much drives the specs I am longing for.

The Q1 is very, very close to what I would consider, but the price/features ratio is still not quite there yet, and the battery life is a huge concern.

Ideally, I’d walk out of the store with a solid UMPC with specs like the Q1, plus the following:
[*] ~$1000 price including basics like AC adapter, keyboard, case. Even better if it has some sort of convertible form factor so the keyboard isn’t just connected by USB cable in the case/organizer.
[*] Battery life of at least 5 hrs.
[*] Overall size similar to the Q1 case with UMPC and keyboard in it. I’m aiming for the portability of a Franklin paper planner.
[*] Slightly better screen resolution than the Q1. I think the next step up would be something like 800×600, wouldn’t it? Real resolution as opposed to simulated. Much better for general computing, and for e-book reading.
[*] 750Meg RAM, 60gig HD

That would be my dream UMPC for now! Of course, Vista might cause the needed specs to rise a bit also.

The pointer device on the keyboard is also a must-have item for me, but the Q1 already has it.

One of these days I still might just go get a Q1 as an impulse buy, but my plan is to wait until the next generation for better battery life and better prices & specs.

Cody Blotske

What’s a keyboard? O yeah that thing that’s normally twice the size of a UMPC. Maybe you are thinking of a small QWERTY keyboard. You are right, that would be the perfect size. Its a good idea lets take something that works really well when its huge and make it really small without taking any ergonomics to the design so everyone has to use their thumbs. Hold up, the UMPC has dial/thumb keys. I think the QWERTY keyboard will be very very efficient once I talk a crazy voodoo doctor to shrink my hands instead of my head. The main problem with a keyboard on a UMPC is that you don’t need one (sorta). It has XP tablet edition. I will admit I have only used a tablet for about 3 or 4 hours. But I have to say it’s liberating. Sorry for the rant guys, but people say they want a small tablet but beg for a laptop.

I think the price of a UMPC is reasonable, here’s why. Can you buy a slate laptop for $500? If you can find one, shoot the OEM an email asking them to make it half the size but keep the price the same. Let me know how that goes. ;) I know this might be the wrong place for this comment, feel free to move it where you wish.

Keep it mobile,
Code E


Bob, you raise a good point but I don’t think that sales like this notebook can be compared to UMPCs. This HP sale is obviously a clearance to get rid of overages in inventory before introducing the new Vista capable notebooks late this year or early next. UMPCs are still too new for any OEM to have an over supply that they are ready to sell at a loss (or near) to move them out.

This HP sale demonstrates something I have felt that OEMs do for a long time. The low price is the result of both a mail-in rebate and an instant rebate at sale time which lets them book the sale at a price that is much higher than the eventual price. This lets them play with the books and still dump the inventory they are trying to move.

Don’t worry, eventually we’ll get down to a better price point for UMPCs. I’m curious though, what price are you waiting for and what kind of device do you want to get for that price?

Bob Russell

You know, I bet if you applied the logic for why UMPCs can’t be cheap (http://www.tabletpc2.com/Whya$500PriceTagforanUltraMobilePCisntRealistic%20-Article900815.htm), you’d find, by adding up all the parts and components, that this $400 laptop can’t be sold for less than $750! ;-)

Sorry I couldn’t find the post you guys made on this, but my point is that there are market efficiencies that may kick in, as well as the inevitable clearance sales. At least I want to think so, because I really want one of those UMPCs. I just can’t see spending that much, at least until we see integrated keyboards (like convertible tablets, or like the HP1000 series, or claimshells, etc) and >=5 hr battery life, even when active, and with wireless functions on.

So are these incredibly cheap laptops a sign that UMPCs can be cheap after all? I sure hope so!

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