Categorized | Opinions

Back to the future: netbooks for a new generation

Posted on 12 February 2016 by admin

Marketing the device with Android operating systems could give it new life

By: Ian Schrauth
Staff Writer

Screen Shot 2016-02-12 at 2.48.53 PM






Ever since Microsoft released Windows 8 back in 2012, it was almost the end of the line for the netbooks. Therefore, companies decided to stop selling netbooks; however, there is one way that netbooks can come back to life, and as a software development major, I believe Android is the answer.

The reason that I feel that android is the answer and iOS is not the answer is because Apple tends to make their operating systems closed source. For example, if you would like to install Mac OS X on a dell laptop, it is not possible to do so without breaking Apple’s User End License Agreement. Android is more open source, and it is available on many different kinds of phones – including phones by Samsung, and LG.

Android is an operating system for phones and tablets only, but it would be the perfect operating system for netbooks. Think about it: the phones that we use today have less than 1GB of RAM, so it would run faster on a netbook. If companies would add a touchscreen onto the device and flip the screen, like to Lenovo Ideapad Yoga, you might be able to bring the netbook back to life as a netbook-tablet mixture. I feel like this would be a great invention, because the netbook was a great machine at the time. They were portable, small and they worked well for business meetings. If you have it with Android, you could use it before the meeting to play your games or talk to your friends, and when the meeting starts, you could use it to take notes and record the conversation.

Another reason why I think that it is good for the market is because it is cost effective.

Before, they made the netbooks with an Intel atom processor, and Android runs on ARM. ARM tends to not cost that much, so they could make it cheaper to sell these, and make more people happy.

Another option could be that you may have a touch screen netbook that will not flip, that you may enjoy it as a regular mini laptop. If you have a data plan, you could have the option to make calls form the laptop with the built in microphone, or with a headset with a microphone built into it. This also applies to video calls with Skype with their built in webcam.

Now what about the ports? I feel it would be less cost effective if you only let it have ports: a port for the power, the sound and the micro SD card.

I interviewed Gail Fike, who was with me at a Launch Code meeting, and she had said she could see it turning into a tablet, but not with a good market; however, if Microsoft adds apps for the android, it would possibly do well. She had also said that it would not be a phenomenon, but it might if they offer something different alongside it.

I both agree and disagree with this statement. the reason that I agree with the statement is because if the companies that offered Android on netbooks do offer something different, it might turn into a phenomenon.

The reason I disagree with it is because it just might be good for the market. I mean, think about it. You have a laptop that you can fold over and that is about the size of an iPad mini, you have the choice of using a keyboard on-screen or using a keyboard that is physical. It is lightweight, and it can be used anywhere if you have data. It sounds like a tablet, but it is even better.

Personally, I like to have a physical keyboard because I tend to have big fingers. A lot of people feel that way because that is just how we have grown. We have big fingers, and a keyboard the size of a netbook would do the trick.

Android on netbooks can be the next big thing in 2016. It can be even better if we transform form the original netbook, to the netbook that might shape the future.


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