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Netbooks, shmetbooks – fresh from the spade’s a spade department


Aw c’mon people, these things – and by things I mean products like the Asus Eee PC1000HE and similar – are not netbooks, OK? They are laptop computers, or portable computers or notebooks. But they are not netbooks. Can we all stop falling for the marketing trype and try and get it right?

If it comes with a decent size keyboard, a 10 inch screen, a 160 GB hard disk, 1 GB of RAM and Windows it’s a laptop. I mean, good grief, just because the suits are trying to segment the market to keep these cheap laptops out of the mainstream price brackets doesn’t mean that the tech press has to fall for it, does it?

Netbooks by definition are ultra-small, preferably Linux based, fast start portables which are geared to one thing – surfing and using the Internet. They’ve got WiFi/Ethernet (and soon hopefully 3G), maybe a touch screen and/or webcam, ideally a decent battery life (hah!) and they certainly don’t need Nvidia graphics to handle Firefox 3.

They also don’t need to be benchmarked for raw performance (except comparatively), because that’s not their sweet spot, is it? Because that sort of stuff is for laptops, isn’t it? Sheesh!


1 Comment

  • I do understand where you're coming from, Nigel. It does seem that the marketers are trying to carve themselves out a distinct catagory, and then seeing what they can shove into it and get away with. These "net-books" though are pushing the envelope quite a bit.

    I propose that the Eee PC 1000HD, and it's large sized kin, be called a Net-top, or at least a Lap-book. Actually, lap-book kinda has a nice ring to it.

    Btw, I totally agree with you and the battery life situation on these things. I'm hoping someday that they will eventually be so energy efficent that they'll run off of solar-power like our modern day cheapie calculators. I suppose while I'm at it, I should also wish for connectivity to be cheap and ubiquitous, data storage unfallable, and world peace.

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