Acer Aspire One Netbook

Acer Netbook (Wikimedia Commons)

Netbooks, which first appeared in 2007 are small, lightweight and inexpensive laptop computers, typically weighing around 1Kg. They have smaller screens (7 – 11 inches) and keyboards than a normal laptop and do not have an optical drive. They also tend to have lower-powered processors, less RAM and smaller hard disks than a full-size laptop.This makes them ill-suited for processor-intensive applications, but they are ideal for Internet browsing and straightforward tasks like word processing. Netbook sales have declined since the introduction of tablet computers.

Most netbooks use Intel Atom or AMD Fusion processors, specifically designed for low power consumption. They typically have 160 or 250GB hard disks and 1 – 4GB of memory and support wireless networking. The commonest operating system is Windows 7, followed by Linux, with a small proportion running Android or Google Chrome.

Next: Ultrabook