back to article Netbook demand surge to slow next year

Acer will extend its lead over Asus this year, as World+Dog buys even more netbooks, causing demand to surge. So claims market watcher DisplayBank. It calculates that of the of the 14.65m netbooks that shipped globally in 2008, 5.45m were Acer machines while 4.85m were produced by Asus, who's original Eee PC arguably set the …

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Acer vs Asus

"DisplayBank's prediction for 2009 puts Acer on 11.3m units and Asus on 6.45m"

Certainly judging on past experience that would seem feasible. I love my Acer Aspire One, it's probably the best netbook around at the moment.

But Asus have announced some pretty interesting new models for 2009, including touch screen and a tablet form factor. By contrast, Acer's idea of innovation is to make their machine an inch bigger. I hope for Acer's sake that they pull something a little more interesting out of the bag, or we're likely to see the above figures reversed before the year's out.

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Coat

Yeah right

I have a feeling improving specs and Windows 7 will void these predictions. Can't see linux catching on either.

- mines the one with the big stirring spoon in the pocket.

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Ermmm...

Only last week weren't we all being told that the NetBook market was to be the new saviour of the world economy, by outselling all other consumer durables?

I'm going back to Slashdot for my real news!

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"Who's"?!

Tsk, tsk!

> Asus, who's original Eee PC

ITYF that's "whose".

And while I'm at it...

> But it won't lastr

"Lastr"? And finally:

> in DisplayBank's there's still plenty of demand

In DisplayBank's what?

I am scandalised, appalled etc. [cont'd. p94]

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Re: Yeah right

Word on the street is that the netbook edition of Windows 7 will be crippleware, basically the same version as the one they flog in piracy-riven countries, that can only run three applications at once. Borderline OK with today's models, but as the processing power increases, so will the demand for maybe running a media player as well as an email client, web browser and instant messaging.

Foot, meet gun.

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re: Acer vs Asus

I would disagree, I have owned both brands, and the HP MiniNote is better than both brands. Better build quality, better features. The HP Mininote 2133 is £190 on ebuyer, and the Atom based 2140 is due on these shores very soon.

The 2133 is a million times better than the eeepc900 or the Aspire One.

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Manufacturers hate netbooks

I think the slowing slaves growth is down to the manufactures doing everything they can to morpth the netbook away from it's original aims of a Small Cheap Computer, and back in to a more expensive larger, and most importantly a higher margin standard laptop.

Asus and the others initially flocked in to the segment with great success, but obviously found many sales coming at the expense of their more profitable laptops, so we've had a never ending series of models getting a bit larger each time, adding hard drives rather than solid storage, and putting damned Windows on them, and at each step getting more expensive and closer to the price of full sized laptop.

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Re. HP 2133

I'm glad you're happy with your netbook, anon coward. However, it's a bit of a push to describe it as a "million times better", with its 1:30 battery life and underpowered VIA Nano processor. The 1280 x 768 screen res is a nice touch, but I sure as hell wouldn't swap for my Aspire One.

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Re: HP 2133

I have to comment on "underpowered VIA Nano". In *every* benchmark I've seen, the Nano outperforms the equivalent Atom quite considerably. To prove I'm not just blowing steam, here's a couple of links to back up this statement:

http://arstechnica.com/hardware/reviews/2008/07/atom-nano-review.ars

http://enthusiast.hardocp.com/article.html?art=MTUzNSwzLCxoZW50aHVzaWFzdA==

http://www.trustedreviews.com/cpu-memory/review/2008/08/14/VIA-Nano-vs-Intel-Atom/p1

You can also ignore PCMark: Its result vary with CPU Vendor string so widely as to be useless.

Via's Nano CPU also has the excellent Padlock crypto engine built into it (can you say "full disk encryption?) and is also fully x86-64 capable (about time, Via). It, or it's associated chipset, *does* draw a couple more watts from the PSU, so I'll admit that it may drop battery life *slightly*. Would you like to state that the Nano is underpowered again, or were you perhaps thinking of the C7 Esther?

BTW, a dual core 45nm part is on its way, so expect them to keep pace with Intel.

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Re. HP 2133

Well that sounds like Asus/Acer FUD to me, I get way more than 1:30 out mine (3cell). It' s more like 2.5 hours out of mine, if I am careful with LCD brightness. and whilst the Via CPU may be a little weedy (1.2Ghz), it's more than adequate to run XP and Windows 7 (with a 2GB upgrade), if battery life is a concern, you can pickip 6cells on ebay for £40.

Performance is more than adequate for a netbook, and the display is vastly superior to either the Aspire or the eee. More importantly, the build quality and the keyboard on the Mininote really are in a class of their own. The keyboard on the Asus and the Acer are horrendous.

I have owned all three netbooks, and HP are mighty close to perfect in the MiniNote 2133, I expect great things from the Mininote 2140 with the Atom. For £190 they are unbeatable, and the Bluetooth that ebuyer fails to mention they have is a added bonus.

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@ Chronos & Anon

Wow, you learn something every day huh? It looks like the Nano is the more powerful processor after all. It's odd, I've seen at least a couple of reviews stating that the 2133 seemed a bit sluggish compared to the competition, I guess it shows you shouldn't put too much stock in a reviewer's subjective opinion. Anyway, it's nice that there's some competition in this area, and I'm glad to hear there's a dual core version on the way to keep the pressure on Intel.

To say that the keyboard on the Acer is "horrendous" is pure silliness though, it's one of the better netbook keyboards. I've no desire for the machine to be even bigger just for more keyboard space, I'd prefer it a bit smaller and more portable if anything. And yes, I can say "full disk encryption" - can you say TrueCrypt?

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Stop

You people are just plain crazy

I started my netbook journey with the original eee 701 (still have it), onto a HP2133 and finally the

Samsung NC10.

The Samsung wins by a country mile. XP, decent keyboard, good screen, superb battery life.

HP good design but Vista and that VIA processor - hellish.

eee 701 - sweet and tiny, Xandros Linux fine and pretty nippy but keyboard cramped and screen too small for serious use.

The Acer looks fine but horrid Linux variant and difficult to upgrade the RAM.

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Anonymous Coward

HP 2133

The HP 2133 still uses the VIA C7, not the Nano. Sorry to spoil the party.

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re: HP 2133

You didn't spoil anyones party. As mentioned, the C7 in it's 1.2Ghz form is more than capable of XP or Windows 7. I would skip Vista on it thou...

My Mininote with XP boots and is feels responsive than my dualcore E6600 with Vista. I wouldn't want to do number crunching on my Mininote, but if all you want is XP, Office 2007, and a Webbrowser, it's unbeatable in netbook.

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More steps

I think the next few years will bring two parallel trends:

1. Wintel-based netbooks will be bigger and better specced.

2. A new crop of non-Wintel netbooks will dominate the market for really small and cheap netbooks with long battery life, but low specifications.

The latter will almost certainly not run Windows, but some of them might use x86-compatible processors, though I think most will use ARM.

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Re: Ermmm...

No contradiction at all. Netbooks can both slow in demand *and* outsell everything else.

All this requires is for everything else to have their sales volumes take a quick trip down the shitter, like there was a recession on or something.

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Boffin

Are we near to a replacement for the HP Jornada 720 yet then?

Or the Psion 5? Or even, heaven forbid, the Psion Netbook?

What was old, is now new again.

Incidentally, please remember that Netbook is a trademark of Psion plc: http://www.ipo.gov.uk/ohim?ohimnum=E428250

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Netbooks

Display bank says the netbook market will reach to about 26 Million units, and continue to grow by some percentage till the time the research is available. I guess everything is in Netbook favour - the changing consumer perception that enough processing power is available in atom processor for his and he/she doesn't require a bloated specifications machine to get on with his daily chores, the price point which is closer to a mid/high end mobile phone, Ones over dependence on the information on the go. Acer and Asus being the early adopters are surely enjoying the fruits of their wisdom while others have a catching act to do. 9 out of top 10 PC manufacturers (excluding apple) have launched their versions of Netbook which will further explode the market and the market may grow well beyond 26 million units - ---which would only put further strain on the PC companies in terms of revenue and profitability.

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