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In the end it's about judging people on their merits, not their background or some rubber-stamped credentials.
...it’s targeting users who want a very portable machine for everyday computing tasks such as browsing the web, editing documents, listening to music, etc, that also crave long battery life and a sleek form factor.
Golly Gee Willikers, that's exactly why I bought the eeepc. And it still worked for those purposes in 2014. And I'd still be using it in 2015 too if WinXP got updates or there weren't Linux driver issues. (This model did not ship with Linux.) Hell, I did more than web surfing on it - it made a sweet portable SNES emulator, as well as something to watch movies on. I even did some basic video editing on it if you can believe it or not - although admittedly, processing effects and encoding took a while.
Given the hardware advances in the 6 years since the 1000HE was released, I find it hard to believe Asus can't put out a computer that serves the same purpose for the same amount of money. Or less money.
Perhaps it's just over-spec'd for the stated purpose. 8 GB and 1920x1080 for web surfing and document editing? My gaming rig runs on 4 GB and 1440x900.
This doesn't even take into account licensing/patent issues, which I believe come into play as well.
In the 90s when music over the internet became a thing, MP3 was the only game in town. MP2 existed, but it was less efficient. At that time there was no such thing as "hardware support" so users were free to pick the most efficient format.
By the early-mid 2000s, there were several formats beating MP3 in listening tests. Musepack, Vorbis, AAC. You don't see many of those "in the wild" now, but I certainly see more today than I did in 2005, putting them on a slow upward trajectory. Once disk space and bandwidth come down a couple ticks in price, there will be no reason not to go FLAC which will make lossy compression irrelevant as you can transcode to whatever you want/need.