NetBook News and Updates

Thinkpad netbook in the tunnel?

Lenovo’s senior exec has revealed that the company is looking forward to release a netbook under the Thinkpad brandname. Due to the recent introduction of netbooks sporting high price tags, IBM thinks that the lines between netbooks and notebooks are blurring at a very fast rate.

However, Lenovo has clearly indicated that the Thinkpad netbook will not have specs of a conventional netbook. According to them, if you want ‘full functionality’, you will have to go for Core or Celeron mobile processor. The Thinkpad netbook will be designed to cater to the needs of those who yearn for something that is more powerful than the conventional netbook but has the same size and feel.

The Thinkpad brand is a brand that is widely popular among businessmen and if Lenovo releases something under that brand, it will be of premium quality for sure.

[via apcmag]

OQO cancels all preorders for MODEL 2+

First we saw the disappearance of the OQO models from the expansys store and now we get the news that OQO  has canceled all the preorders for the model 2+. This further makes us think one think: Is OQO on the brink of getting bankrupt?

Clearly, UMPCs are now dying due to their huge price tags and poor demand. Companies need to realize that in such tough times, it would hard for the consumer to shell out $1000+ on a UMPC. ASUS has pretty much understood this fact that they released their tablet/UMPC at a fair price tag of $549.

I am personally not at all surprised due to the fact they were NOT able to offer satisfactory service to the customers in US or anywhere around the world. See this POST for more information about the extremely poor OQO customer support.

Download Ubuntu Netbook Remix now!

Ubuntu Netbook Remix is now available for download! What do I need to install Ubuntu Netbook Remix?

  • A 1GB USB flash drive (aka thumb drive)
  • An Intel Atom processor
  • At least 384MB of RAM

Get it from THIS link

CONFIRMED: No Apple Netbook coming

After months and months of rumors about the Apple netbook, Apple’s chief operating officer finally confirmed in harsh words that Apple will never produce netbooks as they do not deserve the MAC brand. Here are the exact words,

When I look at netbooks, I see cracked keyboards, terrible software, junky hardware, very small screens. It’s just not a good consumer experience and not something we would put the Mac brand on. It’s a segment we would not choose to play in.

He further said, if you want smaller screens, you can go ahead and buy iPhone/iPod for that. This makes me wonder how can an iPod Touch replace my netbook. I own several Windows Mobile devices along with iPod Touch (latest 2G version) and I firmly think that in no way they can ever replace my EEE 1000H.

iPod Touch and Netbooks are both two very different devices. Both of them have their own specific use. I like iPod Touch and WM devices as they are way more mobile than any netbook in the market. But, when I need to do some serious work, I always look up to my EEE 1000H (which is still very portable as compared to normal notebooks).

What this actually shows? This shows that Apple’s Chief operating officer, Tim Cook has actually never used any of the modern day netbooks as none of them have cramped keyboard, ‘junky hardware’ or terrible software.

[via venturebeat]

Toshiba NB200 netbook launched

Toshiba has added a new netbook to their range, the NB200. The NB200 will now replace its older model, NB100. Specifications wise, it does NOT sports anything worth taking note of though.

  • 1.6GHz N270/1.66GHz N280 Intel Atom processor
  • Intel 945GSE graphics
  • 160GB hard drive
  • built in WiFi, Bluetooth
  • 3G

It will go on sale in the UK in May for £319 ($464).

Here is its press release:

Toshiba Computer Systems today
announced a new addition to its mini-notebook range with the launch
of the new Mini NB200 – a portable, highly stylish 10.1” laptop
perfectly designed to fit the modern digital lifestyle.
The Mini NB200 is the perfect device for consumers looking for a
stylish and reliable PC. A selection of models are available, with
consumers able to take their pick from a 1.6GHz Intel® Atom®
Processor N270, or the new, more powerful Intel® N280 Atom®
Processor, offering a clock speed of 1.66GHz. Both models also
feature the Intel® 945GSE graphics chipset, and offer more than
enough power for browsing the internet, emailing, running basic PC
applications and enjoying digital media – currently the four most
popular uses for mini notebooks.
A Truly Modern Design
With Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition as standard, the Mini
NB200 offers a new ultra thin platform with a striking new design,
with a unique textured cover to appeal to the most style-conscious of
consumers. The new, near full-size keyboard on the Mini NB200 is
available with a new ‘tiled’ layout to offer cleaner look and feel.
A total of four colour options will also be available, in shades of
brown, black, white and pink1 guaranteeing a design to suit any taste.
The Mini NB200 comes with a 10.1” widescreen TruBrite LED
backlight display (1024×600) providing richer colours and clearer
definition – perfect for browsing the internet. A standard three cell
Pink edition available from Q3 2009
battery offers life of up to four hours, while an upgraded nine cell
variation delivers up to nine hours life from a single charge –
providing maximum working flexibility when operating away from the
mains.
HDD protection
Integrated Hard Disk Drive (HDD) storage of 160GB ensures that
users have extensive storage space available for multimedia content
and personal documents. While the highly portable nature of mini-
notebooks exposes them to the knocks and bumps that are an
inevitable feature of life on the move, the Mini NB200 features a 3D-
accelerometer monitoring system that detects freefalls, shocks and
vibrations and protects the integrated HDD to secure against the loss
of any personal data.
An integrated 0.3MP webcam provides a portable option for online
video and teleconferencing, while connectivity including Bluetooth
and Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g) allows users to easily connect to the internet
on the move. Three integrated USB 2.0 slots are also included,
providing the ability to plug into any number of external peripherals.
One of the three USB ports also features Toshiba’s innovative Sleep-
and-Charge technology, allowing users to charge mobile phones and
personal media players, even when the mini NB200 is turned off.
As a responsible global corporate citizen, Toshiba ensures that all
laptops are RoHS-compliant, effectively reducing the environmental
impact by restricting the use of lead, mercury and certain other
hazardous substances. The new Toshiba mini NB200 is ENERGY
STAR® 5.0 ready2.

[via crunchgear]

MSI to unveil Android-powered netbook at Computex 2009

There are rumors and reports coming from all around the world that the MSI is planning to unveil a netbook running Android OS. MSI may or may not make the Android netbook for direct sale to consumer as it has plans to gain order from other PC vendors.

The Computex is beginning June 2, 2009 which is still more than a month away. If the rumor is true then, I’m pretty sure that the MSI won’t be able to keep its ‘little jem’ under the wraps for that long.

[via digitimes]

AT&T Acer Aspire One netbook with built-in 3G now just $80

Whenever netbooks or mobile phones are bundled with subsidized plans, the prices are greatly reduced. Now, the Acer Aspire One netbook, which was the best  seller last year is now available from AT&T at just $80.

This is a pretty good deal for a netbook that still sports pretty impressive specifications:

  • Atom N270 processor
  • 120GB HDD
  • 1GB RAM
  • Windows XP home
  • 8.9-inch screen
  • 1024 x 600 display

However, it comes with just 3-cell battery which will be able to give you just 2 hours of battery life

[via radioshack]

Android Netbook by Skytone

Yesterday, we posted about the ibuddie netbook which would be powered by Android OS. Now, Skytone is also going to release its Android powered netbook.

It will come with following specifications:

  • 533MHz ARM processor
  • 7-inch touchscreen
  • 800 x 480 resolution
  • 128MB of RAM
  • 1GB of storage
  • SD card slot
  • 3G (optional)

The netbook may seem pretty underpowered when compared to the netbooks powered by Atom processor, but we must not forget that we are talking about a netbook that runs mobile OS.  Android OS is certainly not ‘that’ tasking on the CPU and hence, does not a lot of horsepower to run.

It is nice to the option to get one with 3G built-in though.

[Skytone] [via theenquirer]

Compal reducing R&D support for MIDs – Are they not selling well?

MID (Mobile Internet Devices) is a segment which started along with UMPCs (ultra mobile PCs) and Netbook. Both UMPCs and MIDs simply failed to take off.

The Compal Electronics has reduced its R&D resources specifically allocated for MIDs due to the uncertain business outlook for the segment, according to industry sources.

However, Compal made a wise move by shifting those employees to the netbook R&D segment.

[via digitimes]

There is no use of using N280 + GN40 combo if you are using Windows XP

Intel N280 processor and GN40 chipset provides better hardware video decoding and 3D graphics performance only if you are using Windows Vista. This is because only Vista (or later) gives you directX 10 and DXVA 2.0.

Unfortunately, most of the netbooks are still shipping with the Windows XP. With Windows XP, you only get DXVA 1.0 due to which hardware video decoding does not work properly. With Vista, DXVA 2.0 is available and hardware decoding worked fine.

Right now, only Eee PC 1004DN and Gigabyte Technology’s Touch Note T1028 have GN40 chipset. It may be true that netbooks with N280+GN40 combo may offer better hardware video decoding, but the overall performance with a BETA product like Vista is simply horrible on the netbooks.

I tried Vista on my EEE 1000H with 2GB RAM and the performance is disappointing. I will (patiently) wait for the Windows 7 instead.

[via digitimes]