Just a few years ago, netbooks were the hottest notebook category. That’s not the case anymore; we’ll discuss why in a moment.
A netbook PC is the smallest type of notebook available, with screens in the 10” to 12” range. Most netbooks have small hard drives, in the 250GB to 320GB range. To keep the weight and power down, they eschew built-in CD/DVD drives. They also feature slower and less powerful processors and often run the stripped down Windows 7 Starter Edition, instead of the full version of Windows.
All this adds up to a much smaller and lighter PC with very long battery life. Unfortunately, it also results in less oomph to do more sophisticated operations. Netbooks are great for checking email and doing small tasks on the go, but not necessarily for heavy duty office work.
Netbooks also cost a lot less than other types of notebooks. You can find netbooks priced as low as $250, with few if any priced over $500. Know, however, that you can’t do as much on a netbook as you can on a traditional notebook – but they’re sure nice to travel with!
Figure 3 An Acer netbook with 10.1” screen.