It’s great to see all the momentum out there in netbook-land. These simple little internet devices, while limited in their capability, are generating a lot of buzz out there. That’s a good thing, and Intel has certainly been behind this trend with a great little energy efficient processor called Atom. But as with anything new and exciting and different there are bound to be misperceptions.We’ve seen some really innovative Atom-based netbooks—from Dell, Acer, Asus, MSI (be sure and check out the “love” edition), and others. But there’s also been some confusion as to what constitutes a netbook. We’ve seen full featured laptops with 160G hard drives and $700+ price points referred to as netbooks. We’ve seen full featured laptops with multiple expansion slots running Vista compared to the Intel Classmate PC and the Asus Eee PC, both of which are more clearly in the netbook category. It’s important to note what a netbook really is: a basic, single function device designed primarily for internet consumption. They are great for this purpose — browsing, checking email, social networking, etc. But buyers may be disappointed if they expect to do video editing, watch full length movies, and multi-task with multiple applications running as they would a traditional laptop computer. As awesome as this little Atom processor is — the smallest chip Intel makes with the world’s smallest transistors — in netbooks, it is not meant to replace the rich user experience one gets from the Core 2 Duo or Intel Centrino 2 Processor technology based machines.
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