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Which Netbook? A guide to Netbooks

Tablets have become extremely popular for both business and personal use in recent years, but for those looking for the functionality of a laptop with the flexibility of use of a tablet then netbooks are probably still the best option.

When coupled with a good mobile broadband plan they can provide a great option for getting online and working, communicating, browsing, and using content online and on the go – filling the option of both a tablet and a laptop in terms of functionality and portability. If you don’t need a lot of computing or downloading capacity, a netbook with a mobile broadband plan might be all you need for your online needs.

This is an important decision therefore, since a good purchase could either save you money or end up leaving you with the wrong setup for your needs. Here are some considerations for making a choice between a laptop and a netbook.

Netbooks are lighter weight, smaller versions of laptops and due to being lightweight they generally have a better battery life. While they are primarily intended for internet browsing, there is no reason why they can’t be used for work or entertainment. The only thing that might not suit netbooks well is tasks that require heavy computing power such as downloading HD films.

Playing games is also something that netbooks are not suited for because of the hardware needed for many gaming setups. The processors used in netbooks are less powerful than their laptop counterparts.

And while there is nothing stopping you from watching things on your netbooks like movies or tv, it is worth bearing in mind that the much smaller screen can be an obstacle for ideal viewing since they are usually at least 33% smaller than the standard laptop in terms of screen size.

It is also worth keeping an idea of what kind of keyboard requirements you have. Netbooks are generally significantly smaller and don’t have a number pad which can throw people off in the beginning. If you type a lot and don’t want to have to adjust then take this into account.

In terms of operating systems, there are Windows and Linux netbooks of many types, and Macbook Minis for those who want macOS. So regardless of your OS preference this should not be an obstacle to buying a netbook.

Battery life can be very similar between netbooks and laptops, and in many cases netbooks can be better. One big factor that impacts netbook battery times is the type of disk drive they have. SSD and NAND drives are much more energy efficient and will result in a longer battery life. However, they are more expensive and have less storage capacity than standard HDD drives. This means that you’re trading an increased cost and better battery life (SSD) for overall storage capacity and slightly increased performance (HDD).

Overall, netbooks can do enough for most people and can easily replace laptops. They won’t be as good for heavy duty internet use or gaming, and they’re not as good for watching video, but with the right battery setup and storage system they can be durable, portable and more cost effective.