Have you even seen a nettop or netbook being powered by AA batteries? It may still be possible if the portable device is embedded with ultra low power ARM processor but seems that NorhTec has able to make it happen even with a X86 based netbook running with AA batteries. Named as Gecko EduBook, it is claimed to be able to last for four hours with eight units of AA size NiMH (Nickel Metal Hydride) batteries alone while on the move.
The power efficient netbook is powered by Xcore 86, or better known as Vortex86MX SoC (System on Chip) that integrates both audio and graphics capability into its core. Clocking at maximum of 1GHz, it is expected to only consume 1.2 Watts that make it suitable for fanless application. More importantly, its ultra low power design can be purely based on eight units of AA batteries for normal operation which is extremely economy and convenience without the need to worry about replacement battery pack in the long run. Surprisingly, the device is equipped with 8.9-inch 1024 X 600 resolution LCD that could draw up huge portion of current needed while in active mode. Some other hardware specifications include maximum of 1GB DDR2 RAM, IDE Hard disk drive, Ethernet and USB ports, SD card expansion slot, WiFi capability and many more.
While able to maintain thermally efficiency, it preserves the great advantages of Operating System compatibility with its light weight X86 core architecture and users can expect to run with Linux Ubuntu, Windows CE and even Windows XP. Costs below $200, Gecko Edubook will be available in consumer market by July time frame.