With the launch of Linux’s new KDE Slimbook laptop, the only question in consumers’ minds now is: is it worth its $800 asking price?
The KDE Slimbook comes with either a sixth-generation Core i5 model or Core i7 processor, a 13-inch 1080 pixel screen, and is said to be configurable with up to 16GB of RAM and a 500GB SSD. It is being produced by Linux in partnership with Spanish PC Company Slimbook.
Although nothing can make up a consumer’s mind better than actual experience, the team at KDE confidently describe the KDE Slimbook as taking “a new leap in providing us all – users and creators alike – with a safe, private and productive experience.
A laptop that we, as creators and makers, lacked. A machine that ships with us in mind. Private from the first boot, secure for all users and where productivity is its main focus. A machine for creators.”
The project was designed to address the biggest issue facing Linux distributions which is hardware compatibility. Companies like Apple simply can guarantee that its hardware and software work well in sync by controlling both of those aspects.
Microsoft’s Windows has costly licensing fees and requirements to ensure that hardware partners provide the necessary drivers and support. Linux on the other hand, by virtue of being an independent and open-source platform, can be tricky to get working on different hardware.
The usual method for getting Linux on a computer involves probing forums, following how-to guides, and hoping that another member of the community has tried the setup or encountered a similar issue.
Hence, the KDE Slimbook which allows the developers of KDE to reliably address specific issues by having a standardized hardware platform that they can develop software for, making it easier to ensure its software runs smoothly.
KDE hopes that the homogenized hardware will give a more reliable user experience, which in turn could attract more people to use KDE’s version of Linux.
It features the productive environment of Plasma, KDE applications, the technological advances in KDE Frameworks and the agile pace of KDE software.
KDE Slimbook: Price and Specification
There are two versions of the Slimbook, the KDE Slimbook i5 priced at €729 and the KDE Slimbook i7 at €849.
It also has 2x USB ports 3.0, an SD card slot and mini HDMI out. They both weigh 1.36kg. The maximum spec model is being offered at $1,325.
Buy KDE Slimbook
The KDE Slimbook is available via the Slimbook website.