Netbook to provide South African customers with affordable internet access

A new affordable netbook aimed at boosting connectivity in South Africa has been released. Vodafone subsidiary Vodacom claims that its new Webbook will provide value-added portable internet access. The device – which weighs under 1kg - features a 10-inch LCD screen, 512MB of memory, and 4GB of additional storage.

Chris Ross, managing executive for commercial development at Vodacom, said: “The Vodafone Webbook is going to offer the end user a compelling, mobile or at-home computing experience at an affordable price. We think this device is going to be particularly important and attractive for the emerging market.”

Several pricing plans aim to keep the device affordable; as a standalone model, it will retail for R1499 (US$185), and it will also be available with a prepaid starter pack for R1899 as well as on a 2-year contract for R189 per month.

The computer uses the Ubuntu OS, which is a free open source platform based on Linux. “Ubuntu’s founding principle is to remove the barriers of access to computing for everyone, and products like this give hope of connectivity to people all over the world”, said Ubuntu pioneer Mark Shuttleworth.

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