Dell shows off its Eee PC rival

Dell has jumped on the cheap laptop bandwagon, releasing photos of the Mini-Inspiron, its version of the popular Asus Eee PC.

The PC-maker was forced to post pictures of the laptop on the Direct2Dell blog, after chief executive Michael Dell, was snapped with the laptop at an event.

Dell is pitching the laptop as "the perfect device for the next billion internet users" and though it has yet to confirm the specification, rumours suggest it will feature an 8.9in screen, an Intel Atom processor and choice of XP of Linux Ubuntu operating systems, targeted at the ultra low cost market popularised by the Eee PC.

The Mini-Inspiron is entering an already cluttered market, which has recently seen the HP Mini Note added to its roster, and the clamour begin for the MSI Wind.

Dell has given no details on a potential release date for the laptop, though further details are expected to emerge at next week's Computex festival being held in Taiwan.