We're not quite to the bottom of this matter yet, but it appears that retail partner PC World are planning to add a hefty tax on Packard Bell's recently announced EasyNote XS.

The EasyNote is a new ultra-ultra portable 7-inch sub-laptop from Packard Bell that offers full notebook functionality in a very small package.

Although Packard Bell stated in this morning's press release that the EasyNote would be on sale in PC World for "from £349", it seems the computer retailer is planning to add £150 to that price.

Previous reports that PC World were planning to offer the product for £599 proved incorrect - Pocket-lint got in touch with PC World's PR team who confirmed the price would in fact be £499 but offered "no comment" to the question, "But, why?".

There are discrepancies in PC World's description - at one point it says the EasyNote will run Windows XP (as per the Packard Bell release) but elsewhere it says it will come with Vista, and the amount of RAM quoted changes from 1 to 2GB in the text.

It's possible that PC World are planning to beef up the spec that would therefore hike up the price, but seeing as the entire point of the EasyNote is quick, easy, cheap computing on the go, we would imagine the average consumer would rather be offered a low-priced, factory specced model to decide themselves what to upgrade.

We're waiting for Packard Bell's PR guys to come back to us to explain their "from £349" RRP, so until then, ponder this one until we can update the story.

STORY UPDATE:

We've had a statement back from Packard Bell regarding this matter:

"Packard Bell wishes to withdraw the price indicated on the Easynote XS in its press release. The release should not have included a recommended retail price as this is set by our customers and came about through crossed internal communications between Packard Bell's Head Office and its local Office in the UK".