A Tale of Two Netbook Trackpads — Toshiba’s NB205 is Massive


Over the weekend, Tyler and I checked out the Toshiba NB205 netbook. Hey, some folks hit car shows or movies on a Saturday night — we check out netbooks. After writing a test post on it, I was sold. After all, if the device is good at what I need to do all day long, it’s a pretty attractive purchase. Obviously, I’m going to be sharing quite a bit about this netbook over the next week or two, but I wanted to address a very good question that arose from one of the readers.

TalonZ asked “I remember you didn’t upgrade from the wind to 1005HA because there wasn’t enough reason to. So what is it about this laptop that made you decide too?”

That’s an excellent question. I actually got my first hands-on with the ASUS Eee PC 1005HA when I saw the Toshiba netbook. The two were side-by-side. One of the key differences is in the trackpad and mouse buttons of the NB205. Above, I have a pic showing the trackpad for my MSI Wind on the left and the NB205 on the right. The difference is massive! In fact, the trackpad on the Toshiba NB205 is even bigger than the one on the Lenovo X301 full-sized thin-and-light notebook I have on loan. And while the 1005HA offered a larger trackpad than my Wind as well, more is better in this case for me personally. The 1005HA also uses a single button for left and right clicks, just like my Wind. Although functionally the same, I prefer dedicated left and right buttons.

Folks should know that the NB205 trackpad doesn’t currently support multi-touch controls, which is something that the 1005HA does offer. That’s not a deal-breaker for me (obviously), but it’s worth a mention. I do see plenty of custom actions in the trackpad settings, although they’re not intuitively easy to get at. You can set up specific actions for the corners of the trackpad as well as vertical and horizontal scrolling at the edges.

So did I purchase a $399 netbook solely for the gigantic trackpad? Not by a long shot, so stay tuned as I share my experiences over the next few weeks. Although I’ll have access to the final Windows 7 build on Thursday of this week, I’ll likely stick with Windows XP (s msft) for review purposes on the NB205 for a bit. That’s how consumers are buying this device, at least until October 22nd. Once I get through using it with XP, I’ll surely upgrade to Windows 7.