See Full Story
If you want to know why the netbook is headed to the endangered species list, take a look at Gateway's new ultraportable. The handsome offering with the bland designation "EC 1437u" has power, performance and a small footprint, all for a very reasonable price of $549.99. When the notebook is pulled out in a crowd, its glossy, cherry-red shell is sure to evoke envious questions about its origins. Although larger than most netbooks, the Gateway model is still smaller than a clipboard, albeit thicker and heavier.
I recently went through evaluating netbooks for a client and agree the Aspire 11.6" is the bargain of the bunch.
One of the true handicaps of notebooks for most of my clients is the 1024 x 600 display on all of the 10" units. It simply is not comfortable to work with for long periods.
Another problem is that the keyboard on smaller units simply are not designed for anyone with medium to large fingers.
The touch pads are another issue, but each netbook is deployed with a wireless mouse, so I will ignore this.
The Acer Aspire One AO751h-1346 Netbook w/the Intel® Atom™ Processor Z520, 2 Gb memory, 250 Gb hard drive, etc. is the solution to both complaints.
During evaluation (of a 1 Gb, XP Pro version) I loaded all of MS Office 2003, Photoshop CS-2, Dreamweaver, etc. plus several browsers and email clients. Even with several programs open, the performance was very acceptable. I found this surprising until I 'did the math' and realized that the Aspire was the equal of many workplace desktops of just a few years ago.
Loading Win 7 Pro still worked fine although with 1 Gb, Aero was not an option.
For the client's road warriors, this turned out to be the most popular machine to date. Even the people with new, much higher powered, notebooks were angling to get one of these. The only holdouts were the 'movie buffs' who didn't like the lack of a DVD and gamers who are always looking for the most horsepower plus great graphics.
The machines purchased were either bought with 2 Gb of memory or upgraded to 1.5 Gb (512 Mb is soldered to the MB in the 1 Gb units). Even the original unit's 160Gb hard drives have proven adequate.
Have not had a single failure with about 30 deployed to date.
You pretty much described our Acer Aspire One 11.6" machines. While our annual IT budget equals about 1.2 seconds of Intel's revenue, we rely on that infrastructure to enable our far-flung (all of four) offices to communicate.
That being said, we just ordered two Netbooks (for a total of 4 so far) and will top out at about 20 such Netbooks in early 010--all at under $300 per unit, thus saving a minimum of $250 per unit. Plus, we are using SaaS solutions to replace MS Office. True, the video card leaves much to be desired, but we don't watch videos; we read contracts on the screen.
If you want to slay Netbooks, double the speed and RAM and keep the price at $300.