Monday, February 02, 2009

My thoughts on Netbooks

Netbooks may be the "IN" things right now but I will never go and buy any of those "nerfed" notebooks. What good are those netbooks for anyway? Other than being light weight and small? They are priced so close to their notebooks siblings that an extra 200 ringgit would have get you bigger screen and processing power that is 2 to 4 times faster than the netbooks.

You might argue that netbooks are good for surfing the web and watching some movies. But, what pleasure can you get from reading text and watching movies on such a small screen? I bet half the time you have to squint your eyes to read the text and spend more time scrolling the site than reading it.

Mentioning movies, nowadays movies are getting hi-def, and the petty ATOM cpu of Intel have to struggle with 720p movies. The graphics accelerator of netbooks are usually GMA 950, which is so yesterday that it can't play any 3D games nor help in processing movies. My friend once even told me that he plans to play games on his netbook. And it made me laugh till I almost lose my breath.

What happens if you have to open a big document files that contains like a few hundred pages? Your netbooks will be so LAG that you thought there might be some virus hiding inside your system. Once opened it, it might take a second or more to move from one page to another.

My advise : don't ever buy a netbook. It will make you suffer hair loss, impatient behavior and worsens your eyesight. Might as well add a few hundred ringgit on notebooks that can do more than what netbooks can ever dreams of achieving.

Disagree with my thoughts? Feels that there's more things that netbooks can do? Then kindly leave your comments here :)


Kamigoroshi said...

I'm a netbook early adopter. In fact, I bought the EeePC long before people came up with the term netbook nor before most people ever heard of the new generation cheap systems.

The thing is, buying my EeePC 701 with the 7 inch screen is perhaps one of the greatest investment I've ever made. Since I'm on the move a lot especially before this when I was doing my honours, half my thesis was done on that small screen in cafe's. I got used to the small keyboard and the small screen pretty quickly, more so since I modded the entire thing from scratch.

It's true though that netbooks represent a niche market and it's not for everybody. When I reviewed the EeePC, I explained that it's never meant as a desktop replacement (which is what you're talking about in your post), but as a subsidiary system for people on the go a lot and have a main system. It's meant mostly for the complete novice or the hardcore modder with no room for the average user in mind.

Best of all, it's an ultraportable (which normally runs into several thousand RM) which can do everything a normal laptop can do for a ridiculously cheap price and you cannot find that anywhere else on the market.

PandanKia said...

Try lugging a regular size notebook day in day out and you will come to understand the need for netbooks.

Games are for kids, netbooks are for business. period.

Ray said...

To Kamigoroshi :
after reading your review, I guess that netbook are different segment of notebook. But I still can't shake off the thought that I can get more powerful notebook by putting a few hundred bucks. Anyway, I salute your comment! Netbook is not for power user(like me)!

To PandanKia :
most people that I know usually carries laptop bags rather than luggage so lugging all day long wouldn't be that tiring. If you referring to lugging the notebook IN and OUT of the bag, then it's really is tiring.

Kamigoroshi said...

Notebooks are for power users. But like you said, it's a different segment for niche users. They may not have been made for power users at first, but they are certainly have the capability if you know your way around computers like a lot of us do.

Prior to this, the closest you could get to an cheap, good ultraportable was the now obsolete IBM Thinkpad X30. It was not as powerful as it's desktop replacement siblings (it was pretty average with its processing and it didn't even have an optical bay) but it was the hackers laptop of choice because it was light and affordable (and very disposable).

That legacy has now passed on to the netbooks, a lot of people I know like the form factor because they can code on the go and they can really go with it. Laptops that cost a bit more are too heavy to run around and use too much power to wardrive with.

Reel Advice said...

Hi there!

I am actually thinking of getting a netbook. A few months ago, I would have said the same things you have said. But for some reason, I really love the idea of lugging a portable PC that is small and very lightweight. Hey, even the price is pretty great!

I do not expect to play games with it. I don't even play games in my current laptop anyway! :)


Terence said...

after reading all these comments...maybe I will get a netbook too(influenced by you guys!). acer aspire one, using linux with price tag of rm900 seems to be a good deal. I think I will leave the gaming tasks to my desktop~
It's just that i'm not sure that netbooks have the power to do software programming stuff(I'm a software enginnering student).

Tan Jit Ren said...

Software engineering should go for notebook. You have to face your laptop for whole weeks and if you just look at one small spot, your eyes must be very tiring and will blind soon! Trust me,netbook are suitable for business or home user who like to surf the internet or doing some minor activities. Power students like us have to open the the visual studio and debug the software all the time. If you use netbook, the first thing in your mind is, why i so stupid XD