I had, on recent occasion, an opportunity to play with the HP Mini Netbook for a few hours. After fooling around with it for a bit, I have come to the conclusion that it is really not suitable for me.
I’m sure that there are many people out there who find them utterly indispensable, evidenced by the growing Netbook market, but I doubt that I would find it very useful – except possibly as a CarPC (come to think of it, it would make a pretty decent CarPC).
I have two main peeves with the Netbook.
Firstly, the keyboard. While the HP Mini has the largest keyboard of all the present Netbooks in the market, it is still pathetically small. Typing on it is extremely erroneous but I’m sure that after some adjustment, it would get better with time.
Secondly, the monitor. All netbooks come with a very small screen (8″-10″) that is further plagued by a low resolution. I found myself bent over trying to use the screen. Increasing the font-size may help, but that will further reduce the effective work area on screen.
However, this is all just my personal opinion.
I can however, see netbooks replacing smart phones. If they built some 3G capabilities into device, it could easily become the business appliance of choice. You can not only check email on it but also do some serious work alongside. Plus, you wouldn’t need to compromise your browsing experience on a even smaller phone screen.
Now, if only Intel can come up with a better use for their Atom platform.