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Netbook or laptop - which to buy ?

08/10/09

Netbook or laptop - which to buy ?

Permalink 10:18:09 pm by Eugene Gardner, Categories: General, Articles

When looking to buy a mobile computing device, the first decision is whether you want a laptop/notebook or a netbook. There?s no universally accepted distinction, but basically a laptop will run applications loaded locally ? Word processing, voice to text conversion, audio and/or photo editing and/or storage etc. A netbook is an appliance that is not much more than an interface to the Internet. Its job is mainly to run a web browser in which other applications (e-mail, word processing, spreadsheet manipulation etc. ) are executed from and held on a remote server. Netbooks usually do not have an optical drive and the keyboard is compact for grown up fingers.

By not needing any significant computational power or storage, netbooks can be made very cheap and small. Unfortunately some people like the size and/or low price but expect them to be able to do all a regular laptop is designed for. This invariably leads to disappointment. Typically netbooks have a screen size of around 10 inches and a weight of about 1 - 2Kg whereas laptops need more space (for cooling and components) and so have screen sizes of 15 to 18 inches and weigh in at about 2 - 3Kg.

The general rule is to buy the power you will need in 6 months as otherwise short term savings lead to a long term waste of money as under performing hardware is too slow to be worth the trouble of using.

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