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Netbooks: My Latest Obsession

Updated on April 27, 2010

 So, I've been completely obsessed with netbooks this past couple of months. Not even sure how it all started. To be honest, I think the idea was born through my existance on Hub Pages. I found myself writing or reading (mostly reading) on this site ever since I discovered it.

This all eventually led to me spending more than normal amounts of time on my computer, which is in my room. Again, I can't remember exactly what turned me on to these little netbooks, but once I wrapped my mind around the freedom I could have due to the portabliliy of these tiny machines in regards to writing I soon became obsessed.

 It only took me a second after realizing the practicality of a netbook to make up my mind that I it was something I definitely wanted. So the search began. I did some browsing in general and toyed with them at a local store. Which I stongly suggest you do in order to get a feel of typing on one of them. I almost thought that the comfort level of typing on one wouldn't be so great, but surprisingly it worked out fine for me. Not bad at all, in fact I'm writing this hub on my netbook now.

The most important aspect you need to consider before purchasing  one of these is to realize exactly what you're intentions are for having one. Netbooks are designed mainly for writing and browsing the internet. So if you're into huge gaming, and storing lots of music, movies, etc. you may end up disappointed.

From my searching of info, I can share with you what you won't get when you pick up one these netbooks. There is no optical drive, so obviously you won't be able to pop in any cd's or dvd's. Storage space is not huge, sound is not of the greatest quality, but it is good enough for what I use it for. You're obviously not going to get any kind of "surround sound" out of a netbook, but it's more than enough to hear over my daughter playing on the computer, the t.v. in the background, and my little one playing and talking. It takes a bit to get started once you turn it on, but once you're online, going through it is just fine for me.

So again, if you are realistic with your expectations and intentions, you will be very happy with your very own netbook. I actually talked myself into looking into more powerful laptops. The idea of having a dvd player, and more storage as well as streaming sites like Hulu with no problem became of interest to me. But then I thought, my main interest at heart was to have the portability of being able to write and browse the internet when I wanted to. Realistically, I didn't see myself using anything more than what a netbook had to offer.

The bottom line with these netbooks is that they are all pretty much the same when comparing their specifications. The majority of the netbooks on the market include Intel Atom processors, all of which may vary a bit in specifics, but if you're using it the way I'm using it, there isn't much difference you'll notice between them. Most also include 1GB of memory, which depending on the brand, you are able to upgrade to 2GB. I honestly don't see the need to upgrade mine, I've been very happy with operating what I need to with 1GB.

 

 All netbooks come equipped with webcams, yet I did notice that the sound may be a factor depending on the brand you choose. One of the main differences to consider in choosing which netbook's for you is battery life. You'll notice the ones in the $299 range include 3 cell batteries as opposed to 6 cell batteries. The netbooks with 3 cell batteries will last anywhere from 3-4 hours and the 6 cell battery netbooks will last about 6-11 hours depending on the brand. You can find a netbook of your choice ranging from $299 to $599. The question is, which one fits you best?

The one I chose and completely recommend is the Samsung N210. It has a 6 cell battery, so I get more than enough battery life than I need throughout the day. I especially felt most comfortable with the keyboard being that it has the raised keys making it easier to the touch. The touchpad area seemed to me to be wider than others, giving me more space to rest my hands on while typing if I wanted to. The touchpad works very nice, it's sensitivity is great. I opted for the all white in color, just seemed a bit more refreshing to look at rather than basic black. The screen is matte unlike most other netbooks which tend to be glossy. I like this because I don't have to worry about any glare or fingerprints being so apparent. I've been able to get onto youtube with picture quality being great as well as view video on other websites I visit. Hulu, is kind of touch and go. I am able to function basic online games if I want to like classic Donkey Kong, Pac-Man, Tetris, etc. As I've mentioned earlier, the sound is great too. I find myself turning the volume down even sometimes.

I very much recommend a netbook for anyone who enjoys writing. It also makes a great tool for students. Netbooks are small enought to bring into the classroom for note taking, and can be used for writing assignments as well.  I still use my desktop PC, but I find myself enjoying my writing experience with a more refreshing outlook using my netbook. I could be anywhere; sitting in the kitchen with a cup of tea, on the couch with my liitle guy while he watches his show, in the car as I'm sitting waiting for my daughter to get out of school, etc. If you choose to purchase a card with service from a phone carrier, you can enjoy using your netbook with interenet access anywhere you go; the park, camping, while relaxing on the beach, etc. Even if not using the internet in these areas, your netbook allows you to write whatever comes to mind to be saved as a document. So, if you love to write and browse the internet here and there and nothing more serious than that, a netbook is a perfect fit for you!

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    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      6 years ago from California

      Hi bruzzbuzz, yeah if you need to serve the purpose of simply writing and browsing here and there the netbooks totally fit the bill. I have however been doing much more photography and editing on my desktop. My netbook does not have a cd/dvd drive (of course again, my purpose of use was just for writing) so I'm thinking about another laptop that I can work on for writing and photo editing/cd burning as well. I love my Samsung, very much so served it's purpose! I appreciate your vote up. :)

    • bruzzbuzz profile image

      bruzzbuzz 

      6 years ago from Texas , USA

      This is one of the only reviews of netbooks that answered what I have looked at for my needs. I, too, want a small machine with portability that I can write on any time I want. Tablets are portable but not good for writing when you need to write a 1000 word article. Laptops are nice but too big. I think I am going to settle on a netbook. I am going to look specifically at the one you chose, the Samsung N210. Thanks so much for your review. Voted up and Retweeted.

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      7 years ago from California

      Thanks for reading and I very much appreciated you sharing this as well ChameleonContent!

    • ChameleonContent profile image

      ChameleonContent 

      7 years ago

      I'm getting pretty sick of my Dell and Windows Vista. This seems like a valid option for my next purchase. I'm involved with online learning and I think the following is a great point you bring up: "I very much recommend a netbook for anyone who enjoys writing. It also makes a great tool for students. Netbooks are small enought to bring into the classroom for note taking, and can be used for writing assignments as well." I just shared this on http://twitter.com/elearningplace today.

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      7 years ago from California

      Hi Peter, yeah the size can take some getting use to at first. I do have to admit, it's great for browsing online and writing documents but it is slower compared to a desktop. I still use mine but mainly for browsing :)

    • Peter Owen profile image

      Peter Owen 

      7 years ago from West Hempstead, NY

      I had a netbook but my eyes just could not handle the small size. I had to increase the font sizes on the screen adn due to the small size of the netbook, I had to constantly scroll up/down, left/rigth when reading. This was so much of a pain that I went back to a larger laptop.

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      7 years ago from California

      Thanks houlian, you'll definitely be hooked if you get one. Glad I was able to introduce you to these netbooks!

    • profile image

      houlian 

      7 years ago

      Great article cheryl, thanks to you i could possibly be throwing out my desktop! Sadly, i don't really know why, but i have never heard of these, maybe i have been under a rock. Anyway, once again great extremely informative article, keep 'em coming.

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Hey Astra Nomik! LOL! That's too funny. It's not hard to believe that an hour can be spent just messing around on these things. I'll go from just "checking" my email to much more too. I know what you mean by favorite waste of time...I love my netbook, I'm learning that there are phones available now that can be used to tether to netbooks so they can be used as a modem allowing for internet access through your cell phone! I've gotta check up more on it though. =)

    • Astra Nomik profile image

      Cathy Nerujen 

      8 years ago from Edge of Reality and Known Space

      It's a bit big to be a true netbook but my Apple iBook in all white is my luxury item of choice (leave the iPhone out of this for now). Netbooks that have good hard drives, bluetooth and wifi are going to be all we need. A few usb connections and a printer cable is useful too. This little joy has become my favourite waste of time, if you understand what that means...

      Great hub, I don't blame you for loving netbooks, they are kind of adictive, you can do so much with them. (I spent an hour in PC World messing on a bunch of netbooks on display till security noticed I had sent a bunch of emails on their in-house wifi. Ha. It was worth it. God I am sad. LOL.

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Hi Lita, thanks for your comment. Yeah, the size of netbooks may not fit for everyone but it works very well for me. Either way, even with your bigger laptop the fact that you can enjoy being online and not be stuck to a desk is always nice. It's just a very nice option! I use mine all the time, so I know what you mean by making you complete. =)

    • Lita C. Malicdem profile image

      Lita C. Malicdem 

      8 years ago from Philippines

      From our old bulky family computer set, I switched on to a cute netbook, an Asus thing of my own. My 2 daughters have their own as well. Given my failing eyesight due to diabetes, I bought a bigger laptop, still an Asus, because of its very good performance. I can carry it around as well. It makes me complete, really!

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Thanks for the thumbs up hypnodude! I completely agree, the portability of it is what I love most about my netbook. It definitely serves its purpose for me and more!

    • hypnodude profile image

      Andrew 

      8 years ago from Italy

      I have an Asus EEEPC Seashell and I'm pretty much happy with it. While it obviously lacks some features, as you said, it has all that it's needed to write and surf the net. Sometimes I miss a bigger keyboard or screen but I'm addicted to the fact that you can use it, and take it, everywhere. Thumbs up! :)

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Hi TG! I love the white, it's refreshing to me for some reason. I have to admit that it's become a huge favorite of mine, this little netbook. My son just finished using it to grab some info for his homework right now. You're not alone, sometimes I cuddle in bed with mine too! lol! Thanks for the rate up. =)

    • profile image

      TattoGuy 

      8 years ago

      Great hub moi friend, I have a lil white Dell Netbook and I come home from work and just lie on top of my bed writing a hub or working on my other websites, I loves that lil white netbook, sometimes I cuddle it in bed lol, great hub and rated up ; )

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Hi saddlerider1, I am really loving my netbook! It's great to not be confined to a desk. I'm actually sitting at my kitchen table sippin on tea an able to be around my kids while their getting ready for school instead of in my room at a desk. I'm hardly using my desktop lately, they really are fun to have. Thanks for your comment! =)

    • saddlerider1 profile image

      saddlerider1 

      8 years ago

      I love my laptop, take it wherever and whenever I want to read and send off hubs or emails to family and friends. I used to be confined to a desk top, but not now..notepad and laptop are my choices. I think I may get myself one of those little notepads though, they look like fun. Thanks for the share.

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Thanks habee, I'm sure you'll really love having one too!

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Great info. I need one of these!

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Thanks for commenting singlmomat52, These have caught my attention only for the past couple of months but I learned later that they've been on the market for a couple of years I believe. As of this year, all the processors seem to be pretty equal as opposed to before. It probably won't be long before these things are as common as cell phones! =)

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Hi Sheila b, make sure it's at the top LOL! I'm warning you though, it's becoming addictive. =)

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Hello De Greek, I'm glad my timing worked out for you on this subject. I really became obsessed with getting one. As I've mentioned, if it's used for its intentions you will be more than happy with it, I'm sure you'll love having one! =)

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Thanks entertainmentplus. Maybe you'll inform us of how it works out for you if you end up going for it. =)

    • profile image

      singlmomat52 

      8 years ago

      Wow !!! great information. I have never heard of one.

      Well done!! Learn something new every day!!!

    • sheila b. profile image

      sheila b. 

      8 years ago

      OK, a netbook is on my list.

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 

      8 years ago from UK

      You have written this just in time, as I have been thinking of getting one :-)

    • entertianmentplus profile image

      entertianmentplus 

      8 years ago from United States

      Very informative hub.I am also think of ipad. Thanks for sharing.

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      billyaustindilon, I contimplated that idea myself. But I'm one of those who'll always want more if I allow myself LOL! In just the couple of months that I was obsessing over which one to get, I went from wanting a netbook, to a laptop, to eyeing the macbook pro. I had to just feed my initial "needs" or my search would never end LOL! The ipad does look enticing, but I couldn't see typing documents on there comfortably, yet I'm sure it makes for an awesome browsing experience. My husbands convinced though that in a few months, I'll be moving on to the ipad and that this netbook will end up being for the kids. For now, it works perfectly for what I use it for and more and I love it! I'll be looking out for any possible hubs from you about your ipad experience! Thanks for reading and commenting. ;)

    • _cheryl_ profile imageAUTHOR

      _cheryl_ 

      8 years ago from California

      Thanks Nellieanna, I love my little netbook! I honestly find myself using it more than my desktop, it's just like you said- so ideal. I never cared to own any latptops or netbooks until HP, now I can appreciate all of these awesome writers like yourself at my leisure, not being stuck at my desk! =)

    • billyaustindillon profile image

      billyaustindillon 

      8 years ago

      I was about to buy a new one but now what to see how the next generation iPad plays out - enjoyed your hub.

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 

      8 years ago from TEXAS

      Excellent & informative article, Cheryl! If I didn't have a 13" laptop as well as desktop, I'm sure I'd have to get a netbook. I use the laptop much more than the desktop. I love the smaller size. I use several graphic programs on it and others in connection with my webpages, but I'm not big on games in any context. If you have access to the net and can perform all the operations on the netbook you wish to do, why not? The size, long-lasting battery, etc. makes it ideal! Very good information and you present it so professionally!! Thanks for sharing!

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