I’d just like to point out netbooks main buying point is not only because it is cheap, but because it is enough. For most users, being able to surf the web for email, their social networking, news is what they want on the go. The important thing is that netbooks have both the size (generally under 11 inches) AND can connect to both wifi and/or 3G networks for surfing the web. Besides I reckon most owners of netbooks usually do not have it as their main PC. I am sure there are quite a few statistics out there stating this as well.
Netbooks are desirable because they are meant to be more mobile and will meet the needs of traditional laptops. Traditional laptops (14-15″) have grown heavy and bulky, I don’t know about others but the bulk has made it tricky to balance on the lap during train rides, and that’s if you get a seat.
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Of course one cannot imagine the number sold each year will grow continuously or even maintain the growth, but it will be a major sector for the PC market as a whole, and would probably help push mobile technology to the forefront.
I expect in the future the netbook moniker will be dropped in favour of calling them 10 inch laptops etc. Netbooks have a cheap and nasty connotation to it with all these “analyst” totally missing the point and labelling it as such. Maybe I should be an analyst too…