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back to article Netbooks were a GOOD thing and we threw them under a bus

Packing for a week-and-a-half road trip to Silicon Valley and back triggered a moment of introspection over the impending end of netbook production. I had some devices to choose from for my journey. I could have taken my Alienware MX18, my first-generation Samsung Galaxy Tab, my Asus Transformer, my Samsung NF210 Netbook, my …

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Anonymous Coward

Accounting

A lot of people still need to do their accounts. Every cheap, good system runs on Windows. "cloud-based" systems mean Internet access, not always available. For this purpose the netbook was perfect. We still keep an MSI Wind as backup in case a main computer fails, and its performance on email, basic spreadsheets and accounting programs is perfectly adequate. It also runs all day on the big battery and cost under £300 in total.

One of my wife's clients decided the other day he needed a new computer to do his book-keeping. He phoned up the local computer "specialist" and has ended up with £2500 spent on Windows 8.

Problem in a nutshell. Netbooks were too good; they cannibalised laptops. So the industry decided collectively to sell expensive ultrabooks, and tablets that are not actually good enough for any daily work. Problem solved.

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Re: Accounting

Tosh - if accountants needed to use Windows the accounts department wouldn't be the first with all the toys ... except W8 for some reason.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Accounting

You are aware that many accountants are self-employed and that in many small businesses the book-keeping is a part time job?

I'm not sure what point you are trying to make, but your use of the term "accounts department" suggests you know little about how much of the world works.

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Re: Accounting

It may also relate to the machine then being a "tool for the job", and thus being tax deductable anyway.

Hence the importance of the cost itself diminishes when its effectively claimed back from HMRC.

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Re: Accounting

I totally agree about the accounting package. A usable and supported payroll and accounting package with current HMRC tax tables was the only reason I kept a Windows partition on my Thinkpad. Since shutting down the company, Windows has never been started on it, and it's been Linux all the way.

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Re: Accounting @AC 11:25

Even as a relatively high paid IT consultant, £2500 would represents well over a weeks total income. Justifying it as a tax deductible expense would still make it a considerable purchase for a one person service company. Even claiming back the 20% VAT will not drop such a purchase to below 2 grand, and that is money that could be used for other things (such as paying me), and one of the primary things it would have to be able to do was track it's own depreciation!

Fortunately, I never had the need for that class of machine, as I have not needed to be away from power for more than my 2nd hand Thinkpad can provide.

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Re: Accounting

"Problem in a nutshell. Netbooks were too good; they cannibalised laptops. So the industry decided collectively to sell expensive ultrabooks, and tablets that are not actually good enough for any daily work."

Exactly ...

Won't see mw with any of that useless overpriced kit they sell these days.

My Asus netbook is just great, love it.

Hopefully I'll be able to keep it running as long as I was able to keep my HP200LX, another victim of extreme IT industry voracity.

Just my $0.02

Cheers.

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Re: Accounting

I had an HP200LX. It froze once, not even CTRL/ALT/Del would work, so the only option was to take the batteries out and the CR2032 emergency backup battery; essentially a factory reset, wiping every byte from memory. Not ideal.

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Re: Accounting

Yes obvious thread jacking but come on Accounting, really? My main problem with netbooks was many were built to break as soon as the warranty expired. I liked the Samsung NC10 I had but due to a so obvious it seem to be on purpose design flaw with the internal video cable being pinched by the hinge it stopped working. Pissed me off so much that I never bothered to buy another even from a different competitor.

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Re: Accounting

whoops! not win8 - surface!

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I want a new netbook

I want to update my current 10 inch netbook to a better, less power hungry, processor and decent screen resolution. Nothing exists. In a recent conversation with Dell they tried to sell me a W8tablet with no keyboard for more than twice what I paid for my netbook. I laughed at them, but really the manufacturers have the laugh, not the consumer.

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Re: I want a new netbook

I wanted a new netbook.

In the end, I got a Thinkpad X220 off ebay for £300, added a RAM upgrade and an SSD. 8.5 hours battery life, 12" screen at 1366x768, slice battery available if I need it... bloody perfect.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I want a new netbook

Fair enough, but still cost twice as much as a netbook and presumably no warranty.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I want a new netbook

I wanted a new netbook as I just couldn't live with the 1024x600 resolution on my EEE PC any more. It was and still is a great little machine, but the keyboard had taken a bit of a battering from me changing the hard drive a few times, so I needed something new.

I loved the 10 inch form factor it was perfect for travelling, so I searched high and low for a replacement. Couldn't find anything higher end netbook wise that was still available. They did produce some 1366x768 models but they are really difficult to track down. In the end I decided to get an Asus Transformer Infinity, which I figured would give me the best of both worlds. A 10 inch netbook with a great resolution that can become a tablet if I need it to.

The only thing it lacks is Ubuntu. I wish I could setup Ubuntu up on there to take advantage of the great screen resolution as Android doesn't really make the most of it with it being limited to one app at a time, but I've looked at the guides available online and sadly they don't make any sense to me

I think that's the closest we'll ever come to seeing a netbook again. It's a shame there is no company out there willing to take a chance and produce them again without being forced to limit them by Intel or Microsoft by putting ARM processors in them improving the screen res and selling them with linux on. Some people just don't need a tablet they need a shrunken down laptop that can let them do typing and browse the web. Unfortunately the companies don't listen to us punters

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Linux

Re: I want a new netbook

Chromebook

I mean, if you're not wedded to windows ands prepared to do a bit of hacking. Samsung's ARM Chromebook (XE303), with ChrUbuntu hacked onto it on a MicroSD card. This is serving me very well at the moment and is so much more capable than my long-suffering eee901. And ChromeOS itself actually works really nicely for what it is.

The machine is thin, light, pretty and has decent battery life and zero moving parts. The casing is a little on the flimsy side but otherwise all is well.

If you're not up for a bit of hacking or do want windows of course, this solution is not for you.

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Re: I want a new netbook

No-one will put Linux on them.

The Linpus that was on the EEEPCs was barely fit for purpose - you pretty much HAD to swap it out for another distro or XP if you wanted to do anything. Things like that killed Linux on the netbook sadly.

Acer had a go with the Revo. Mine shipped with a Linux with a nice appliance front end, but sadly no wireless driver. If a non-techie had bought that they would have assumed the wireless was broken and sent it back. Ubuntu and Mint sort the wireless out without issue, so why a major manufacturer cannot escapes me...

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Re: I want a new netbook

I've had a Asus 901 for years and binned the stupid travesty of Linux it came with almost immediately for Kubuntu. It now runs OpenSUSE 11.4/KDE , which installed perfectly from a USB stick and runs everything fine and that includes WiFi, Bluetooth, and 3G dongle.

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Linux

Re: I want a new netbook

Sounds very similar to the Aspire One I bought some years ago. I still have the recovery CD for what was shipped with it but with OpenSUSE 11.4 and KDE 3 (if you know me well enough, you'll know my opinion about KDE 4) now nicely fettled in there after a couple of false starts with its various predecessors, it's a fine beast and is never likely to see Linpus or whatever it was. Not bad for a sub-£200 machine, though the SSD in it is one of those early ones that runs a bit slow.

It seemed to me (yet again) that whoever designed the package was attempting to dumb down the front end because they had no idea of the skill sets of the eventual users. This is a bit stupid given that the KDE front end isn't really that different that a user can't find their way around, and GNOME 2, MATE, Cinnamon or whatever aren't unfriendly either and would probably work well on a netbook (I don't have one to hand but I wouldn't be surprised if somebody else here could vouch for them).

Too many companies are too eager to reinvent the wheel, and underestimate the user base too, whether from the GUI design side or the cost side.

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Re: I want a new netbook

Linpus on my AAO 150 was adequate for day to day activities.

Had Firefox for Browsing, OpenOffice.org for Office activities. Few other apps, and you could enable a right click menu to get terminal and hack away.

In fact it is still on it, running alongside XP and OSX.

That little machine still sits as a media server of sorts, connected to the TV and running media off the 3TB external HDD (xbox and ps3 refuse to see it as is, unless it is FAT32).

My de facto replacement for the Acer Aspire One was an Asus Transformer.

I find Polaris Office decent enough for basic office-y tasks.

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Re: I want a new netbook

Me too!

My EEE 901 was ace as a backup PC, when used on the go I could live with the small screen and keyboard, and it had double the battery life than my wife's 'fake' Sony netbook*. I also have an ASUS transformer tab which is great for most 'consumer' uses, but, as article poits out, sucks at doing anything creative (and if you're complaining about the keyboard.... mine has a French physical keyboard, and Android steadfastly refuses to gracefully combine this with a virtual English keyboard layout, and complains vociferously every time I dock / undock)

* 'fake' in the sense that since it had windows installed, it could only run more than a couple of hours by crippling performance. To do anything power-hungry like watch a movie - it typically would have JUST enough juice to get through a movie**

**of normal running time, no LOTR etc

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Atom still lives on

Another Me too!

Actually, it's worth noting that Atom still lives on, in the form of Clover Trail. It's just that it's not clear whether there will be basic Atom-based laptops, all the devices I've seen so far are hybrids (which isn't necessarily a bad thing - they're still ultra-portable, and have keyboards - but it's also more costly if you don't have any interest in that). Another annoyance is that 11" now seems to be a minimum for any device with a keyboard. E.g., something like http://www.asus.com/vivo/en/vivoTab.htm - with its whopping 19 hour battery life(!) - looks like it would serve well as a netbook-successor, but it does mean 11" minimum (and the extra cost is unfortunately to people who just want a basic laptop).

It hasn't helped the way that the media (and many geeks) slagged off Atom and netbooks as being "slow", when they're still good enough for many tasks, and as good as ARM. Like ARM, they may not be anywhere as near as fast as Intel Core processors, but have the better battery life (and lower cost).

Also "netbook" seemed to get stuck as "1024x600 with 1GB RAM" (despite the fact that they can all be upgraded cheaply to 2GB, which really helps with Windows 7). I'm more than happy to see that spec die. On the one hand, I'm glad to see a wide range of choice of Atom based machines with better specs now finally appearing; on the other hand, it seems odd if absolutely no one decides to make a pure Atom based laptop rather than a hybrid; or 10" rather than 11" minimum.

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Re: I want a new netbook

Comparing the ASUS Transformer Pad Infinity to the upcoming ASUS x86 hybrids, just frustrates me.

The Transformer Infinity is 10.1", and even has better-than-full-HD 1920x1200, but I'd rather have x86 - like you, I want to run something more than just Android. But their upcoming x86 options seem to include:

Transformer Book - 13.3" (and it's i7, which whilst powerful, may not be as good as a netbook on battery life, though putting extra battery in the keyboard dock may offset this - but at that size, not to mention the likely cost, it's not really a netbook replacement).

Zenbook - Another 13.3" i7 machine.

Vivobook - Has an 11.6" option, 1366x768, not sure what the battery life would be like.

VivoTab - Perhaps the closest option, with 11.6", Atom, and a whopping 19 hours battery life with the keyboard dock. 1366x768.

So I think the VivoTab is a possible netbook replacement, but I'm left wondering, if they can produce a 10" machine with 1920x1200, why is their x86 11" offering stuck at 1366x768? As you say, it's this bizarre idea that people want to run mobile phone/tablet on-app-at-a-time OSs at super high resolutions, and desktop windowed operating systems at lower resolutions. Maybe it's because they think people are more likely to watch movies with an Android device, but then, it's also odd that the x86 Windows machine gets 16:9 ratio, with the ARM machine getting the more productivity friendly 16:10.

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Re: I want a new netbook

I think that's the thing though - if you're okay with ARM, there are plenty of options that are much closer to being netbook replacements (in terms of size, battery life), whether it's a Chromebook, ASUS Transformer, or even the various Windows RT hybrids appearing. But even with Chromebooks, the x86 versions seem to be Intel Core or Celeron, putting them more in line with more conventional 11" laptops (or "ultrabooks") than netbook replacements.

(Oddly, I'm sure the earlier generations of Chromebooks did use Atom, but they were more expensive than netbooks, and more like 12" IIRC.)

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Re: I want a new netbook

"since it had windows installed, it could only run more than a couple of hours by crippling performance"

If think it's more the netbook than the OS to blame. My Windows Samsung netbook easily gets about 8 hours of use.

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Unhappy

Re: Atom still lives on

Much of the Netbook's demise was down to manufacturers sticking WinXp on the thing. Not that WinXP was bad. More the licensing restrictions from Micro$oft around WinXP and Netbooks limited the hardware it could run on.

But the price was good and cheaper Windows Netbooks meant competition for the Linux Netbooks. An opportunity missed for Linux? For sure, but the manufacturers were their own worst enemy. Weak OSs and/or weak hardware. Xp was always going to clean up. Box shifters loved it 'cos the punters knew XP and were happy to blow a couple or three hundred quid on Windows Netbook.

WIth Win7 those hardware restrictions are gone. Along with the 'competitive pricing' that was available with XP on a Netbook. So no more cheapo power efficient Netbooks.

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Re: I want a new netbook

> Sounds very similar to the Aspire One I bought some years ago.

I bought one for my daughter, dual boot with Ubuntu. Works a treat. The problems that she has are not related to the machine but the interchangeability with the Microsoft shop that is her school. I don't think she has ever booted up Windows since I gave it to her.

Nice big battery on the back from someone on EBay and 8 hours life, no problem.

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Re: I want a new netbook

@David Bates

The Linpus that was on the EEEPCs was barely fit for purpose

Some confusion, I think.

The EEE PCs came with Xandros ... which wasn't a complete disaster as distros go (though I replaced it with Ubuntu on mine). The simple icon-driven GUI Asus put over Icewm was probably quite a good idea, given that most people buying an EEE PC would probably have been confused by any of the usual Linux desktops.

Linpus is the distro that Acer habitually sling on any of their kit that they sell with Linux. That really is a pile of poo, and doesn't even support the all hardware that Acer ship it on (e.g. no WiFi support in my Acer Aspire Revo until I replaced the OS with a better distro).

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Personal testimonial--realtime

The sentiments of this article are echoed with this writer, who is in fact doing the exact same thing. Personal experience has shown that practical remote computing, even web browsing, requires a decent computer with decent software. Tablets are all right for occasional reading, but I type a lot, and the Bluetooth keyboard I brought with me was hit or miss, not to mention the battery life was an issue since you don't have options for them. OTOH, my Acer Aspire One had the option of tacking on not only extra batteries but also a bulkier triple-capacity one that gives me about nine hours of casual use and several hours on more serious stuff like video playback: not bad in my book, and it's proved genuinely useful in an environment where access to wall power is iffy due to my remote location. At least the wireless service is decent and they don't seem to have an issue with mobile hotspotting. For a small investment, I can stay connected for the duration of my trip.

And I thought I was one of the few who actually got genuine use out of these netbooks: small enough to transport easily (note: you don't have to open up netbooks at airport checkpoints) yet just good enough with its SD slots and USB ports to do honest computing work (including handling a TrueCrypted external HDD for the bulk storage).

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Re: Personal testimonial--realtime

Yup, couldn't agree more. My own Aspire One with similar triple-capacity battery goes all day (9-10 hours, maybe a bit more if frugal and not doing video or too much wifi) and even still fits in its old soft slipcase with enough room to slide my Nexus 7 in there as well. And the chunky battery even gives the keyboard a nice slant, making typing on it much more pleasant.

Has SD slot, HDMI output and virtually everything else that may be needed with the arguable exception of a DVD slot (which is missing on many newer and bigger machines anyway) and built-in bluetooth, and even that was sorted by a thumbnail dongle from the pound shop.

Will be a shame as and when it does need to be replaced, as noted there's nothing on the market now which would fit the bill as well for the couple of hundred notes that one cost (including the battery and a RAM upgrade to 4GB).

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I even used one as a server

I agree completely with the article and for much the same reasons as you mention, with one exception: I don't really understand why Mr Pott writes: "The only perennial non-Android manufacturer-supported Linux endpoint OS is Ubuntu".

After the fuss with Unity I abandoned Ubuntu for the Linux side of my netbooks, and used Fedora. (The Windows side is rarely used). It's perennial, it's non-Android, and hey I didn't miss the factory support. All worked perfectly except GNOME was rather slow so I use KDE, LXDE, or something like RazorQt instead.

Of course one could also do that in Ubuntu, so not much was gained; but LibreOffice was available and everything Just Worked. I haven't changed back. Oh, and an Asus Eee PC 1001HA with standard battery got six hours of use.

In fact at one point that prompted me to replace an offsite backup-server-in-a-closet (minitower with UPS) with an Eee PC running Fedora. Only the external hard drive used the UPS. This far exceeded the old machine for longevity. Also it could fit in a shoebox (the clamshell lid stayed closed).

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Unhappy

Re: I even used one as a server

What the author means is that the only off the shelf linux laptop you can buy is one with Linux Ubuntu from Dell.

And yeah, I agree with the article, its a bloody shame...

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Re: Personal testimonial--realtime

Many a true word!

Several years ago I bought my mother an atom powered Lenovo S10e netbook. She wanted something small and portable just for checking emails. It even came with a large (6 cell I think) battery. It seems to last forever even when set on performance.

Despite owning smart phones and tablets, guess what happens whenever I go away? Yup, I go and borrow the S10e. As the OP said, it's small enough to slip in hand luggage on the plane, it has blue tooth, wifi, a couple of USB ports and a whopping 160gig hard drive for storing all my 12Mb raw photos from my Nikon collection (this accounts for the rest of my hand luggage!).

I've even been known to do a bit of photo post processing on the netbook - although it's not something I wish to make a habit of! Slooooow! However, at least it's an option if I really have to.

All for less than £300 new. Bargain.

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Ahhh, I mourn the NetBooks passing

My Eee used to go in the checked in bag, a spare laptop and got me out of trouble on a number of occasions. I've had one HP and two Dells develop plumage issues in bits of the world where getting a replacement is difficult/expensive and the Eee (900, if I remember) was a life saver in a way the tablet would struggle.

For the author's problem, the 11" MacBook Air would probably be perfect albeit an expensive solution to the problem. Just buy a pre paid, LTE MiFi device in the US perhaps?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Ahhh, I mourn the NetBooks passing

The problem with netbooks was simply power and keyboard (not power as in how long it lasted power is in they had single core first gen atoms that were slower than treacle on a winters morning)

People saw them as half the cost for quarter the power. Now a lot of tablets seem to be pushing us back to netbooks though. Tablets like the surface or transformer are right now effectively eeePCs with processors that can actually do something in less than half an hour. Not to mention that, despite being the same form factor, the keyboards feel like full size keyboards, rather than things designed for kiddy hands.

It's more like netbooks and ultrabooks were a step in the road.

Netbooks shrank the size down to 10 inches, but lacked the power

ultrabooks shrank the thickness down to ludacris amounts, had more power but felt too big (seriously, just buy a laptop, it's cheaper and you get pretty much the same thing only 2mm thicker)

Convertible tabs have the size of a netbook, with the power of an ultrabook and a touchscreen, it's win win win.

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Happy

Re: Ahhh, I mourn the NetBooks passing

That's what I did when my MSIWind keyboard wore out. I had that as a Hackintosh anyway so the change was no issue. The 11" MacAir Mk I is used constantly and a great machine, worth every penny I paid.

If Windows or Linux is your thing, bin OSX and use them on the Mac with no issues AFAIK.

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Re: Ahhh, I mourn the NetBooks passing

My son has a HP netbook with an AMD processor, ideal for most work. Enough power and enough battery life,

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Re: Ahhh, I mourn the NetBooks passing

But that doesn't fulfil: "Intel still doesn't grok that "all-day battery life" means a minimum of eight functional hours, realistically 12."

Which applies to the Apple Air just as much as any other Intel Core device.

But this is the question - how do Intel Core and Intel Atom compare on battery life? I went for an Atom netbook rather than Intel Core ultra-portable not just for cost, but also I was worried about the battery life not being as good, but since then, I've seen some claims that Intel Core has become a lot better. Part of the problem is that you can't really compare manufacturer estimates, as some quote "best possible maximum, with minimum brightness, sitting idle", whilst others quote say, how long it can play a movie for. Anyone seen any benchmarks that fairly compare the two kinds of processor?

If Intel Core is almost as good these days, then all the Ultrabooks and other Intel Core ultra-portables are possible options as netbook replacements, albeit not as cheap.

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Linux

Chromebooks are (effectively) the new netbooks...

....as long as you install a decent distro instead (recent bricking issues notwithstanding).

Note that even with stock Ubuntu, you can always install something usable like XFCE or LXDE to use instead of Unity.

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Unlikely

"Is there a hardware maker brave enough to provide not what the tech giants envision, but what users actually need?"

Probably not, or at least not at a price point where the consumer is prepared to accept some compromises in the spec.

As I haven't been around the OEM scene for a while I'm not certain what the margins are for bare laptops, netbooks i.e. not loaded with "crapware" and so on are these days. If they are as thin as they used to be then it is probably not in the commercial interest to move against their real paymasters i.e. the likes of Microsoft or Intel, with their "marketing" slush funds and other assorted inducements to toe the line.

Mind you, if the current trend of ever increasing size in mobile 'phones is anything to go by, by the time my good old Asus 701 heads for the scrap heap there will be a phone with a large enough screen to allow me to use it as a replacement.

Remember those "portable" bricks that used to pass as mobile 'phones many years ago, we just might be moving back in that direction.

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Pixel Qi Display

I love my Samsung N145/150 netbooks - got about 20 for work use, a couple for the kids at home.

Cost nothing.

Run for ever.

Weigh nothing. (well theres no bloody metal in there for sure)

Runs Matlab, LOffice, etc.

Don't really care when the missus stands on it and smashes the display.

Don't care if a dirt bag flogs it when I'm travelling, or I fill it with beach sand, or drop it in the sea.

Get a pixel Qi display. Costs a couple of hundred $, but you can read the screen in full sunlight, and the battery life is even longer. Piece of p**s to change screens in my Samsung N150's

And Windows 7 Home - brilliant.

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Windows

Re: Pixel Qi Display

Is there a 12" Pixel Qi screen that would fit my X220? I quite fancy fully-sunlight-readable with a 12 hour battery life.

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eee 4G

I've just ordered a new charger for my 4 gig stock 1st gen EEE. I suspect I might find I need a new battery shortly, but I'm sick of classes being held up because my vastly-more-powerful 2012 laptop doesn't want to display the video I'm trying to show my students. It's small, light, with good codec support and an SVGA port. Job's a good un.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: eee 4G

My eee 4G kept going for over 5 years as my main PC at home, but now has a flakey power socket on the motherboard. Up till now, it's had Gentoo Linux for 4 of those years, and it's probably only spent a couple of months compiling (including nights!) in all that time... :-)

Just swapped my SD card to an eee 900 that was barely used by it's original owner because windows XP ran so slowly on it, so now I have more pixels and 50% more processor speed, Woohoo!

And lastly, we recently picked up an acer inspire one with windows 8 from Comet's closing down sale, which is now running Sabayon linux from an SD card.

In my house, the netbook is not yet dead!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: eee 4G

I also have a EEE 7 4G, though I'd have the Android on it if it supported TuneIn Radio I could so I use it as an simple internet radio

I also got a Win 8 Acer Aspire from Comet going out of business. I kept Win 8 on it to get used to it as the work is moving to Win 8/Server 2012, but I like your boot from SD idea. I might do thaT FOR NORMAL USE

tA

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Linux

Re: eee 4G

Why not just run Debian & Streamtuner if you want to use it for internet radio? That's what I do on my Raspberry Pi (with VLC as a player).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: eee 4G

A flaky power socket usually means that the solder joints between the socket and mainboard have cracked from cyclic stress. Find a repair shop with the skills and self-confidence to open up the beast and resolder the socket, and you've a good chance of several years more untroubled service.

I cannot count the number of gadgets I've resurrected in this way...

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Battery life and ARM

"I have a feeling that despite all the hype, Chipzilla's Haswell processor will ultimately not turn out to be the miracle that we've been promised. Those of us who value battery life are going to miss those small, cheap Atoms - or start turning to ARM for salvation."

There are two points to be made here:

1) ARM is the way forward anyway - the new Chromebook is _awesome_ once you put a proper Linux distro on it. It's spiritual predecessor, the Toshiba AC100 is pretty awesome, too, and smaller to boot.

2) The problem with battery life on that grade of machines is increasingly becoming the power draw of the screen. Technologies like PixelQi are hopefully going to address that in the near future but until those displays are available in at least a decent range of standard sizes and are drop-in compatible LVDS replacements for the current generation of LED backlit TFTs, I doube they'll see much market penetration, especially while they are unable to compete on cost.

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Re: Battery life and ARM

"I have a feeling", "miracle that has been promised" is just FUDspeak/sloppy writing. We just don't know enough about the Haswell design decisions to have an opinion beyond being confident Intel are releasing lower power parts.

Agreed about screen, also wireless esp. with increasing use of cloud, LTE.

ARM v Intel makes for interesting competition of benefit to users, you may hope that ARM is the way forward Gordan but hope doesn't mean we won't see Intel products dominating personal computing again on mobile devices if they make the right calls on the 14nm shrink designs and pricing models. We shall see. I, like most people, simply welcome competition if it brings down prices and improves functionality.

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Re: Battery life and ARM

Indeed, Tomshardware have the impression the ARm vs x86 race is far from over. The fact that Intel are inviting investigation into power efficiency is in itself telling:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/atom-z2760-power-consumption-arm,3387-5.html

Although the results we're looking at today are generated at Intel, we were on-site looking at and playing with the company's test equipment as the numbers were being run, observing the results. We’ve also done enough of our own analysis from previously-published reviews to confirm that these numbers make sense. Intel is picking the easiest competitor to beat (Tegra 3 running under Windows RT on a Microsoft Surface), but our own preliminary estimates suggest the 32 nm Atom is going to be roughly equivalent to Qualcomm's 28 nm APQ8060A in the ATIV Tab, and more efficient than the 32 nm Exynos 5 Dual in the Chromebook Series 3 XE303C12.

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Anonymous Coward

Ah the Woolworths syndrone....

well all mis the demise, we all say how it's a tragedy and should be allowed to happen, but last I know these are businesses. If you don't buy the products, they don't sell them. It's called economics.

Syadmins etc are not 99.99% of the buying public.

Oh and Eadon, can it! Still waiting for the evidence that M$ (sic) went round and threatened to kill the 1st born of the manufacturers families unless they banned Linux from going on netbooks.

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