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21 May 09 Is A Netbook Right For You?

Not everybody has the same high demands for computer usage.  In fact most need a home comp just to check email, chat online, and perhaps do a little banking and shopping.  If that’s all you’re doing at home a desktop or fully outfitted laptop seems a little pricey for the privilege.  But there is another option that’s been growing in popularity for some time now.  And that is the Netbook.

A Netbook is basically a smaller laptop, outfitted with less hard drive, processor power, RAM, and a smaller screen, just to outfit you with the basics necessary to use the internet.  As that’s essentially all a Netbook is for, but they are remarkably useful in that sense and purpose.  You don’t really need a load of extra features for your computer if all you’re going to do is use the internet, otherwise you’re paying too much for extras you don’t need that are only designed to jack up the price.

The other great thing about some Netbooks is that many of them have built in internet connections, meaning they go through a wireless network, like a cell phone on the 3G network, so that you can connect from anywhere.  Given a Netbook’s fantastically long battery life, you’ve got a machine that can connect from anywhere for long periods of time, making them extremely versatile and useful for conducting basic business on the go.

But then there’s the major problem with a Netbook.  They’re really only useful for conducting basic computer tasks, like your internet needs.  Anything to do with multimedia, games, or business that requires the use of different applications such as Microsoft Office Works becomes really difficult when applied to a Netbook.  The smaller screen makes using anything like Word a huge pain, as you’ll need to scroll around your typing a ridiculous amount.  And the smaller processor and storage space just doesn’t allow for running any program that requires a lot of real time memory.

So I would say Netbooks are all well and good for accessing the internet, but not really anything else.  Which is exactly what you should think about before purchasing one.  Sure a Netbook will end up being half the price of a much better full size laptop, but with that price difference drops off more than half the tasks that the laptop would be able to excel at, that you’ll find your Netbook can’t handle.

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