Netbook sales set to double?

July 26th, 2010 in .Laptops & Netbooks .Products
Bobby O’Reilly
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Not so long ago I sat down with another tech expert for a quite drink and a chat about what we thought were going to be the big events of the year. We both agreed that tablets would be something special, phones would get better and better and that a subscription to Spotify was the way forward for music.

What we disagreed on was netbooks. An historical blip, he said, which filled a niche but should now be gently put out to pasture as a gimmick that had outstayed its welcome. Tablets and cheap ‘proper’ laptops would see of the competition from the diminutively displayed and underpowered portables.

I wasn’t convinced. While it’s true that netbooks have changed the way other laptops are priced, the original appeal still stood. Cheap, sturdy and good enough for most you need to do online at the coffee shop, there are still too many things you can’t do with a tablet to make them as all pervasive.

I wouldn’t send my daughter to school with an iPad, for example, but I might pack an entry level Eee PC into her bag so she can keep up with her homework.

Besides, tablets aren’t easy to manufacture and achieving the kind of quality they need to work costs a lot more than a netbook.

It seems I’m not the only one who thinks that way. Netbook sales grew another 14.1% in Europe over the three months from April this year. ABI Research, meanwhile, thinks that “consumer interest in netbooks shows no sign of waning”. It’s latest prediction is that netbook sales will double over the next two years.

What do you think? Has the netbook had its day, or are you still as entranced by the Eee PC and its like as you ever were?

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