I’ve been enjoying the loaner HP Mini 1000 Mi for a while now but it wasn’t until this week that the power of this 10-inch netbook was revealed in its full potential. That happened when I installed Windows 7 RC on it and it really has been a great performer since then. I have used the Mini 1000 for several mobile outings and it’s worked well with the exception of battery life. The 3-cell battery is just not big enough to provide more than 2.5-3 hours of life and that’s cutting it a little close for my outings. I don’t like to carry power adapters with me when I’m out and about, so I ordered a 6-cell battery from HP, which arrived this morning.
The battery of the HP Mini 1000 is not like typical netbook batteries. Those usually attach to the netbook at the back below the lid hinge, so 6-cell batteries are a lot like the 3-cell versions, just bigger. On the Mini 1000 the 3-cell battery sits in a flush compartment on the bottom of the netbook so that it keeps the 1000 as small as possible. This is great for the 3-cell battery but provides a challenge for a 6-cell battery that cannot sit flush in this compartment.
HP went with a slight wedge shape for the 6-cell as you can see in the photos and it sticks out about an inch at its greatest thickness. They’ve done a good job making the battery fit and the wedge produces an ergonomic typing angle that is better than with the 3-cell. The Mini 1000 is completely stable with the 6-cell attached and it’s actually easier to use than with the 3-cell.
The 6-cell battery wasn’t cheap; I paid $103 for it. It adds about a half-pound to the system weight while attached, and so far it looks like I can expect about 6 hours of carefully managed usage. That’s more than enough and I’m looking forward to carrying the Mini 1000 around a lot more with that extended battery life.