Who Wants a Netbook?

Photo by: zieak

I know what I want a netbook for. First I’m a guy, and it’s a gadget, and it’s just cool as hell. So yeah, I want an expensive toy. But beyond that, it’s something that’s small enough I can take it with me almost anywhere and get some work done. It’s more capable than a smartphone at all of the non-phone things. (And by the way, I still want a plain old phone that just makes calls and stores phone numbers. Can I buy that, please?)

But I don’t understand who the target market is

What Do They Do?

The iPhone does things no other cellphone did, in a form factor that lets you bring it places you wouldn’t bring a laptop. So no matter which you compare it to, there’s something the iPhone does that was unique.

What does a netbook do that’s unique? It’s smaller than a laptop, but not so much so that you’ll throw it in your pocket and have it always with you. You can, but you won’t, it’s just a bit too big for that.

It’s more usable than a phone, with a more human-scale user interface, but not as usable as a sub-notebook.

That leaves … playing DVDs? And games? When I said I wanted a toy I didn’t mean that’s all I thought it was good for. But now I’m not so sure. Where would I realistically want to have a computer, that I could have a netbook, that I wouldn’t want to have a laptop?

I’m coming up blank here.

2 thoughts on “Who Wants a Netbook?

  1. The thing about the iPad — and all the tablets that came out after — is that they have a touchscreen and an accelerometer. So the interaction is completely different.

    I still haven’t bought one, though, for pretty much the same reason as I never bought a netbook: What would I actually use it for?

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