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back to article Next-gen Atom CPU price halved to push netbooks

Netbooks may become rather cheaper next September, when Intel introduces the next generation of Atom processor for mini laptops at prices well below what it's charging for the current one. Atom N400- and N500-series CPUs cost netbook makers between $64 and $86 a pop, according to Intel. However, Asian netbook maker moles say, …

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Still not out of ARM's way

No point fighting with price if your processor makes you nice portable device's lights go out earlier than the competition.

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mini itx

This will hopefully also nearly half the cost of the mini itx boards as well then.

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Knowing Intel

They will probably not allow that to happen. They will find a way to recoup that cost; maybe through a different chipset and then bar that chipset from being used in a different form factor. Then they will charge more for the chipset to support a Mini ITX.

They have done similar things in the past to prevent processors from being where they didn't intend for it.

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Coat

The motivation?

"Clearly a bid to bring down the cost of netbooks"

I doubt it. I expect it is an attempt to stop the manufacturers moving to ARM and away from the dark side. I expect it is a politics/business decicion.

ARM's response? Probably none, they will continue to develop low-power processor technology, and license it to anyone that wants it.

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Stop

We don't want no stinking atoms

Give us ARM netbooks already!

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Aaaaarrgghhhhh.......

You don't need a netbook. You need a dictionary and an education. What on earth is 'Already' doing in the above sentence. 'Already' is NOT a punctuation mark. When will you imbeciles stop butchering the English language.

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Probably never

.... and certainly not while there are still enough pedantic twats around that are overly concerned with the semantics of another persons trivial postings.

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FAIL

why ???????????

Why would a price reduction of $20-40 make a difference on sales ?

Its still a form factor that has reached its limit unless they can use arm chips or get cheap SSD memory instead.

Sales will only go down as more people switch to tablets as the cheaper android ones hit the market. And lets be honest many who bought a netbook to start with won't bother replacing it but would go for a full laptop instead if its the form factor they want.

The only way sales will improove is if Chrom OS devices take off.......

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Netbook vs laptop

" And lets be honest many who bought a netbook to start with won't bother replacing it but would go for a full laptop instead if its the form factor they want."

Well, wouldn't you think that they would have bought a full laptop in the first place if this is what they wanted? Since they bought a Netbook then maybe a full laptop is not what they want.

I, too, have a Netbook (admittedly one of the more 'grown up' models with 10" screen and higher resolution), but I bought it because I didn't want to carry around a full laptop with 14" or bigger display, and an optical drive I rarely need. Of course there are Subnotebooks but most of them are priced in the £1k+ range which is a bit high for what is essentially a portable web/email client and movie player. A Netbook fullfills this requirement at a much lower price. Why should I spend more for a full blown laptop that is so big and heavy that I rarely bother to take it with me anyways?

Tablets are en vogue at the moment, and I can see that they have their use in many areas. However, same as a laptop not always can replace a desktop PC (despite the latter being declared dead regularly for over a decade), a tablet is not always a proper replacement for a Netbook. There are many occasions where a device with no real keyboard is a no-go.

After the Netbook hype has been over sales have dropped to a normal level. The same will hapen to tablets once their novelty factor has worn off, and then the next better-than-sliced-bread gizmo comes along.

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Netbook purchase motivation

I bought a netbook because it was *cheap*.

An AAO150.

Since then, have upgraded the RAM and Wireless and installed a triple booting OS configuration (XP, Linpus, OSX).

I couldn't see me paying proper money on a laptop or tablet to use as a livingroom / holiday machine or to tweak quite as I did the AAO.

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Netbook = Tablet - TouchScreen + Keyboard

Two things. Firstly, a netbook has a keyboard. For some modes of usage, prodding a tablet screen doesn't cut the mustard. For use on the move, up a ladder, etc. a separate wireless keyboard and mouse doesn't work either.

Also as far as the hardware is concerned, most of it is identical between a netbook and a tablet. The difference is keyboard vs touch screen. Is a touch screen cheaper than an ordinary screen plus a keyboard? I see no evidence of this in current prices ... rather the reverse, unless tablet manufacturers are profiteering off the hype.

The netbook format (physical, not necessarily Windows-compatible) will be around forever, or at least until there is a better way to input text than a keyboard. I'm not so sure about the tablet, once smartphones cost £100 or less.

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Just to disagree with all the other commentards

I think this is a great idea. I like the Atom N550 processor in my Samsung netbook. It's fast and the battery life is great, so no complaints from me.

As for the netbook being a defunct form factor, it really just depends on how much of a fashion victim you are. I was on a long train ride yesterday and used my netbook to surf the net and watch a film - both at the same time. It amused me greatly to see the person sat near to me with a fruity tablet having to switch between video and web (can't do them both at the same time) and also having to awkwardly prop his device in a position where he could see the screen clearly. So, he paid over twice the money for something that does less and is more awkward to use. Win for me.

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Upvoted but,

it can't have been a very good film if you were browsing the web the whole time. Maybe some people only want to do one thing at a time?

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ARM would

give you a longer battery life (or same life with a smaller/lighter/cheaper battery)and would be smaller/lighter/cheaper due to having less heat sinks etc.

Having to switch between web and video is nothing to do with ARM. That's a decision in the design of the ipad.

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Go

Push netbooks?

Or tablets instead?

Strangely enough Atom-based tablets, e.g. WeTab, are actually cheaper than all but the flimsiest ARM-tablets.

And Googles changing interpretation of "open source" just makes MeeGo look increasingly better.

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Netbook replacement

My Acer Aspire One is getting a bit old and tatty now. But I'll certainly be replacing it with another Netbook.

I don't need a full sized laptop (I can't remember the last time I used a CD or DVD) and a tablet won't do because I need a keyboard.

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Netbook market has been effectively destroyed

by hardware and software crippling imposed by Microsoft and there's nothing Intel can do about it.

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netbooks are garbage

After spending $500 on a Samsung NC10 that worked brilliant just long enough to go out of warranty before a video cable design flaw basically made it useless I say f__k netbooks. My iPAD 2 on the other hand will be going strong long after its obsolete and in a closet somewhere. Long live ARM! You are better off buying a decent laptop/desktop for real computer work and having a lovely tablet for farting around on the couch.

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Netbooks cheaply build

Hope you don't plan on your netbook lasting longer than the warranty. I swear to God they build these things to fall apart right on cue. Planned obsolescence for the lose.

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