Casio announced it would launch a new Transmeta-based laptop in Japan on Nov. 21 with a hardware switch that lets consumers choose to boot Linux or Windows XP. The new Cassiopeia Fiva MPC-216XL is the successor to the MPC-206E launched in the United States this spring. Like the earlier model, a hardware switch set into the machine allows consumers to select which operating system will boot.
The machine could be an important foothold for Linux in the laptop market. Though Linux workstations are a common sight and are offered by several manufacturers as an option, a Linux notebook is hard to find. The system is based on Transmeta's Crusoe TM 5600 processor running at 600MHz. It's a win for the chipmaker, which has increasingly come under fire for its failure to carve out a significant niche in the processor market.
Staff writer Matthew Broersma reported from London.