Why you should buy a netbook

 As I travel a lot in the winter up in the mountains for ski, I wanted to buy a new lighter and more portable laptop than my Gericom one. So, I decided to go for a netbook, despite the lots of controversial posts of the positives and negatives of netbooks.  Dave Winer’s post about them made me wanting a netbook much more, because I was searching for a lightweight, cheap, small and good on hardware laptop. So, after some search around the web, I decided to buy a Turbo-X Topnote netbook. Yeah, it’s not Asus, Acer, MSI or HP but it’s getting the work done. With a bit less money I bought a netbook similar to Asus EEEPC1000H Black. The current setup is a Intel Atom N270 1.60Ghz CPU, a Intel GMA 950 GPU, a 160Gb HDD, a 10.1″ monitor at 1024 by 600, 1Gb RAM at 5400rpm and Wifi 802.11a/b/g, Bluetooth and Ethernet and weights about 1kg. On my desktop it is connected to a 19″ Samsung Syncmaster 940NW monitor which runs at 1440 by 900 having no problem with the built-in GPU.

So why to a buy a netbook?

First of all, price. People with the current economic crisis, are afraid to spend much money, so the idea of getting a laptop with 300 euros/dollars is great. Secondly, portability. It’s great to have everywhere you go a small, lightweight computer that can do almost anything -just like a desktop or a laptop. On the other hand, a netbook will not replace your main laptop or desktop. It can serve as a second computer. As Paul mentioned,

The cycle of disconnecting/reconnecting and then readjusting windows on both displays has become such a burden I can hardly find the motivation to move to the couch much less take it out of my apartment.

The same applies to me, as my Gericom is always under my office. Now, I mostly use my netbook -even for Photoshopping. I take it everywhere with me and with a ~2 hours battery life it rocks! There is the the disadvantage of the too small screen, but I have compromised with it. It’s not a huge problem anyway.

Many people say that why to buy a netbook, better go buy an iPhone. It’s smaller, it is from everywhere connected to the internet and in general can do about the same things. But with a netbook you can do a hell of more things, because it runs a full OS and not a mobile one. Plus that it has a normal keyboard too.

What you should keep in mind

Search for netbooks that have a 10″ monitor. It’s a problem using a small monitor let alone a smaller than 10 inches. Be aware of the battery life, it should be around 2 hours and not below. People mention also the problem of the small keyboard. Personally, I didn’t had any. Be sure also what OS you want, because you can choose from Windows and Linux. Considering connectivity, I chose my own with a Windows Xp installation but I dual boot with Ubuntu. There are netbooks from 4Gb SSD HDD drive to 160Gb HDD drive (as mine is). SSD drives are far more fast but with low capacity, on the other hand most HDD drives in netbooks run at 5600rpm.

What do you prefer? A netbook or a laptop? Why? Are you into buying a netbook? Why or why not?

posted: April 15, 2009
under: Computers, Netbooks, Reviews

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