Netbooks only good for an hour at a time (even though some of them can last 6 plus hours on a charge)? Intel seems be saying so. At a recent conference Intel’s vice president of the Sales and Marketing Stu Pann explained that the company is reassessing the intentions of the netbook. According to CNET, Pann is quoted saying the following:
“It turns out the bulk of the netbooks sold today are Western Europe, North America, and for people who just want to grab and go with a notebook,” Pann said. “We view the netbook as mostly incremental to our total available market,” he added. “If you’ve ever used a netbook and used a 10-inch screen size–it’s fine for an hour. It’s not something you’re going to use day in and day out.”
It is understandable that Intel doesn’t see netbooks being a “laptop replacement” since it doesn’t want to cannibalize its other product offerings. But 10-inch netbooks only good for an hour of use? At LAPTOP we have followed netbooks since their inception and have seen them evolve from, in our opinion, the “fine for an hour machine” that was the ASUS Eee PC 701 to fine for prolonged use 10-inch systems like the MSI Wind, ASUS N10 and the Samsung NC10. While netbooks won’t replace your dual core laptop for performance intensive tasks like gaming or video editing, the 10-inch (and even now 12-inch netbooks, like the Dell Inspiron Mini 12) are perfect travel companions which are fine for working in the Cloud, that four hour plane ride or few hours of e-mail checking in a cafe. The response posts to the Intel statement have been thought provoking. Engadget asked its readers to comment on their experiences with netbooks and if netbooks could be their primary machines. Lots of good responses. The Samsung NC10 and ASUS N10J are referenced as being higher end netbooks that can perform like real laptops. Then there is Mike Arrington of TechCrunch who responded with a pseudo-manifesto against netbooks entitled “Three Reasons Why Netbooks Just Aren’t Good Enough.” I may or may not deal with the holes in Arrington’s argument in a dedicated response letter (Brad of Liliputing already did a great job of it), but overall he thinks netbooks just aren’t for everyone. Readers of this site tend to be big fans of netbooks so you tell us. Did you buy a netbook and then find yourself disappointed in performance? Do you use yours for more than an hour?