There is no doubt about the fact that netbooks are a cheaper option than buying a laptop, but, this is often taken too seriously, especially when budget is a primary concern. There seems to be a notion that a netbook is just smaller in size and ‘maybe’ slightly less powerful than a standard 14-inch laptop. At this point, the one thing that matters most is the price, which is why people often get convinced that a netbook ‘will do’, all they want to do is casual computing with some office work or college project, right?

In effect, one could end up with a machine that cannot perform all the tasks seamlessly. In this article, let’s quickly discuss the downsides of buying a netbook.

Screen size
This is one of the most crucial deciding factors as to whether or not you should get a netbook. Let’s say you’re working on an important project where you need multiple windows open simultaneously, do you think that a 10-inch or 11-inch screen will accommodate all that seamlessly? The answer is, no. Here’s another example, let’s say you’re an investor in the stock market and you need to keep a track of your stocks on a daily basis, will all of scrips you add show up on one screen? Again, the answer is no! In any case, watching movies, working with documents, scrolling records and such is much more convenient when you have a larger screen atleast a 14-inch.

HP Compaq CQ 42-139TU (14-inch). Price: Rs 23,990

If you want to keep multiple browsers open, have an email client and a music player working in the background, and, you want to work on two or three documents all at once on a netbook, forget about it, don’t buy a netbook.

Here’s why it’s ok to settle for a netbook (smaller screen and weaker hardware), if you’re only surfing the Internet, occasionally watching movies or clips on YouTube, exchanging emails, chatting and maybe typing out quick letter, but that’s about it. Netbooks are designed to offer weaker performance to meet with these chores and offer excellent battery life. It’s only for computing on the go. It’s a different story that netbooks are becoming more powerful with Intel’s dual-core Atom CPUs and discrete GPUs these days, so that even demanding applications can run. However, if you use designing suites like Adobe Photoshop, or if multitasking is called for in your daily routine, don’t buy a netbook.

Asus Pro5JIJ-S0133D (15.6-inch). Price: Rs 25,460

If you’re good at touch typing, you might manage the first couple of weeks on a netbook without complaining much. But again, if you’re a writer, a web admin or someone who constantly needs to type, the crammed keyboard of a netbook can get really irritating after a point of time. Manufacturers are constantly trying to improvise on the key size and trying to provide larger touchpads and such, but still, there’s nothing like typing on a desktop replacement or a 14-inch laptop at the least.

The interesting part
This is where a first time buyer would get slightly confused, on one hand, you have a netbook that costs about 26K, it can handle all the daily office chores and it’s an ideal machine to slip into your bag when you’re off to work. It is light in weight, looks fantastic, offer over 8 hours of battery backup, we’re talking about a netbook like the Asus EeePC 1018P, which is apt for office use. This is where you’ll be contemplating whether to buy this for convenience, or shell out a bit more and get an entry-level laptop. For better performance a 14-inch entry-level laptop is definitely a smarter choice. Netbooks are best at a lot of things like good battery life, extreme portability and affordability. So these are the prime reasons why you should see yourself buying a netbook. Also it’s easy to get carried away by the affordable price, and, that’s something you don’t want to do, especially when you have options.

Asus EeePC 1018P (10-inch). Price: Rs 26,999

Bottom line
In a budget of say Rs 25,000, you could easily get a standard laptop, click here to take a look at the options available. Now if you’re specifically looking for a netbooks, then here are some good options . The point is, when you want to buy a laptop, why end up spending the same amount for a netbook?

Publish date: October 8, 2010 2:37 pm| Modified date: December 18, 2013 6:48 pm

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