Earlier this month, I offered a video look at Phoenix HyperSpace, a fast-booting partition that enables quick access to the web on a netbook or notebook. While I found value in the product, I thought that the subscription-based model that Phoenix offered was going to be tough for consumers to swallow. Many of you agreed. Back then I felt that a deal with OEMs would provide a better value to end-users and today, the first such deal was announced.
Phoenix just shook hands with ASUS, so you can expect to see HyperSpace in “next generation notebooks”. Now the question becomes: will you have to pay more for the HyperSpace feature in an ASUS notebook or will it be hidden (or subsidized, even) in the notebook cost? Frankly, I see far more chance of success with these types of OEM deals than directly through consumer sales. We asked the folks at Phoenix Technologies and ASUS for some clarification on the details and will update if and when we hear back. I’m also curious if the agreement applies to ASUS netbooks as well as notebooks. Remember, there are two versions of HyperSpace: Dual is for Intel Atom and Celeron devices, while the more functional Hybrid product is geared for traditional notebooks with Intel Core Duo CPUs and up.
If you’d rather not wait for HyperSpace-enabled ASUS device, you can always try the product for 21-days at no cost. You’ll need a supported device like those mentioned on the HyperSpace Product Specifications page.
Updated – I heard back from Phoenix Technologies PR firm on my questions:
- HyperSpace will ship on a variety of ASUS models, such as the recently announced Omega Series notebooks and the well known ASUS EeePC netbook.
- HyperSpace will be pre-installed. The Hybrid product will appear on the higher performance devices, while netbooks will see the Dual product. That’s the product I saw on the Lenovo S10.
- Here’s the kicker: ASUS will ship HyperSpace with a standard annual subscription. That’s $39.95 for the Dual on a netbook, $59.95 for the Hybrid on a notebook. Again, I see this model as a very tough sell and was hoping that the OEM would absorb some of the cost. No dice.