The selection of netbooks, or low-cost sub-notebooks designed with internet access and web applications in mind, are growing with the latest additions from Lenovo – the IdeaPad S9 and S10.
Both models are about an inch thick and weigh just over 2lbs. The S9 starts at €349, while the S10 is available from €419. Cheap as chips? This is why Lenovo is touting these lightweight models as ideal introductory laptops for first-time buyers or those who would like a laptop as a complement to their main PC.
The netbook, as a newly emerging category, gained a lot of public attention recently with the arrival of the ASUS Eee PC – the first highly anticipated and affordable lightweight laptop on the market.
Of course, much research and innovation has been poured into this category in order to create affordable computing for educating children, particularly in developing countries – the Intel Classmate PC and the XO laptop from the OLPC (One Laptop Per Child) initiative are examples of this.
Paul Bergevin, vice-president and general manager of the global comms group from Intel, the company which coined the phrase ‘netbook’, said he sees two distinct uses arising from this new product – first-time buyers in the developing world and those who wish to use it as a secondary laptop in the home.
“In more mature markets, I see a second major usage model for netbooks. They will become supplemental PCs and ready access points into the cloud of internet services, media and information,” he said on the official Technology@Intel blog.
“I imagine an extra PC for travelling, an extra PC for school work for the kids, a PC set up in the kitchen by the telephone to look up directions to the little league field or select items from a restaurant’s takeout menu.”
Liu Jun, senior vice-president, consumer business group, Lenovo, echoed this sentiment saying that this is a line of notebooks aimed at all consumers worldwide.
“As rapidly as the technology changes, today’s consumers are looking for mobile products that feature the best of basic computing functions in an extremely compact and affordable form, and Lenovo designed the IdeaPad netbooks for that purpose.”
The demand for netbooks is set to increase with the IDC forecasting that worldwide shipments of ultra-low cost notebooks will go from 430,000 units in 2007 to 9.2 million in 2012.
By Marie Boran
Pictured: the new s10 netbook from Lenovo