Victory is mine! Got an email today that the VirginConnect service is dead. Now I get to keep the hardware. Although the email they sent says:
We will send you a letter via US mail within the next 7-10 business days that includes instructions for returning your Webplayer and a prepaid UPS shipping label, so you can return the device free of charge. Your Webplayer cannot be re-configured to work with another ISP.
Struggling to find some VirginConnect hacking links so I can put linux on the thing... so far I've got this link. I know that the device is OEM'd by Acer, and they have an MSN Companion based on the same hardware platform that's about to come out.
From a tech perspective, it's a standard low-end Cyrix notebook motherboard, with USB, integrated sound, and a not-so-bad wireless keyboard.