For some time I’m now looking for a usable N.tB..k (ok, Intel brought the former trademark from Psion, I could probably start using the word unmangled …). Some kind of ultra-portable notebook I can take with me, everywhere. My expectations are not really high (e.g. I do not need excessive Phenom (Core 2 Duo, or i7) power on the road. An Via Nano certainly has enough processing power for some minimal Linux to do some text editing and photo upload. However, there are some basic thing I need for the device to be functional:
- Intel VT, AMD SVM, to start some virtual machine when a customer calls
- x86-64 (AMD64, Intel EM64T), gives a little extra performance due to more registers for the register constraint x86 legacy, most of my “Pro” software certainly depends on it, today, …
- digital video out (HDMI, Display Port, whatever) to connect a display when I’m at some desk to do some more work abroad (customer on-site, presentation, meeting, speech, etc.)
- some integrated 3G (UMTS) modem would also be nice to save to carry some additional plastic tube
- ok, it should not look like the cheapest “crap-ware”
To bad most of the “all too similar” standard NetBooks already fail to just meet the first 3 points above, no VT extension, no 64bit and a digital video out mostly missing anyway.
Anyway, I looked at some of the latest arrivals in the sore and collected some data: Toshiba NB200, Samsung N310, Packard Bell DOTM and Asus EeePC 1003HAG.
I find it most irritating that most cheap PC manufactures do not have any unique selling point whatsoever or add higher end features, and merrily compete with exactly same SPECs in a price race to the bottom.
Manufactures: Please, may you please adapt some more decent silicon like the AMD Neo or Via Nano (64bit and VT/SVM aware!) in some products? And manufacture products that suck-less(tm)? Some less thick plastic bezel around the screen (less wasted screen real estate and space in the bag) would also be a welcome design goal. And while we’re at it: less than 600 vertical pixel really don’t cut it anymore. Not in this millennium, ever. Thanks.
PS: Maybe I should just get an “some years old” 12″ Apple PowerBook from eBay … :-(