5 things to consider before buying a netbook


EeepcNetbooks are little laptops and while most of them seem to be comparably equipped there are some things to consider before you commit your money to a particular model.  There’s an article on GigaOM, 5 Things to Consider Before Buying a Netbook that provides food for thought to aid in the purchase decision.  It’s written by a familiar name too.  :)



I bought an EEE 1000H a couple of months ago and have found that I overestimated the portability needs for my computing. This computer is great, but if I could do it over again I would get a budget full-size laptop at the expense of portability and price but with the gain of full-size keyboard and screen.
This computer mainly is a “floater” throughout the house and having a slightly larger laptop wouldn’t be that big a deal.


The point you missed in my opinion is: Will you use it? I bought an Aspire One only to sell it 2 month later. I realized my smartphone is enough for mobile internet, email entertainment. For everything else I can carry my regular 13″ Laptop that isn’t so much bigger or heavier.
I liked the concept of a small netbook and of course the price but it just didn’t find a use for it in my tech portfolio.


Nice writeup, but keep in mind personal preferences can also be a heavy factor when it comes to buying a particular type of netbook, or even a netbook itself.

Keyboard, as you say, is a big factor, and one of the prime reasons I leaned towards the HP 2133 mini note. The full-size right shift key, 92% footprint, isolated inverted-T cursor keys and quality feedback make it perfect for extended typing jobs.

Screen, for me again the 2133 nailed it with the 1280×800 resolution, giving more details makes working with photos, spreadsheet cells, and video so much better and allows more room on the taskbar.

Usability, likewise was a deciding factor in my purchase. Granted, I use my 2133 mini note as a full-blown notebook, so the stereo line-in for audio recording/digital remastering; and express 54 slot for mobile broadband and eSATA external RAID was significant for me.

Battery, again a very important factor for such compact devices used far away from AC power. The 6-cell on the mini note gives 4-5 hours, but considering how SMALL these batteries are, you can easily carry a 2nd one in your POCKET, and get 10 hours of runtime.

Finally, don’t forget build quality. At $200-$400, margins can be thin and hardware choices limited. Getting desired results for minimum cost may involve the use of cheap materials, poor design or poor performing hardware. Sure, it’s great to get a device for under $400, but is it a device you’ll be throwing away after 12 months because it cannot stand extended use? While I admit the mini note is very expensive at over $600, it is, in my opinion, the best built and best equipped netbook you can buy today.

I don’t know why you would want to get away from Windows though, since a netbook would be far less capable and fairly limited in use, being more akin to using a pocket pc. If I want to do a quick web surf or check my email on the go, I still grab for the pocket pc, especially because it’s always with me, always on, and always connected.

I’ve got a ton of other reasons behind my purchase of the HP 2133 mini note, see my blog for a full review:


Dave Zatz

For me the vertical resolution killed it. 600px is fine for web surfing (and scrolling) or email, but it’s not enough space for “working” – too cramped. HP’s original Mini Note may be somewhat underpowered, but it’s special with that higher resolution screen. I’ve decided instead of a 15″ MBP and a 9″ or 10″ Netbook, one 13″ MacBook is sufficient for most of what I want to do anywhere I want to do it.

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