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.