Tablet Killed the Netbook


Back in 1979, British New Wave duo the Buggles recorded a hit song called “Video Killed the Radio Star” which captured the rise of television and the fall of radio. Today, we can successfully change this popular phrase to “Tablet Killed the Netbook”.

It is official – the end of the netbooks has arrived! Even few manufacturers of these devices announced that they will no longer produce the small laptops.

The netbook is known as a cheaper and more portable version of the laptop. However, with the rise of tablets, mini laptops have a hard time finding their place on the tech market. As a result, there are only two netbook producers today – Asus and Acer. However, they now stated that as of 2013, they will stop developing any new mini laptops. That marks the “death” of the netbook.

In honor of the mini device, we decided to make a brief outline its short history. Here are the highs and the lows of the netbook.

The Beginning

Back in 2007, when the first netbooks were released, users and experts placed the device somewhere between PCs and smartphones. Like phones, they were very portable and compact and similar to a computer, they were quite productive and functional. Another advantage of the notebook was its low price. It used smaller, but yet effective operating system, processor and screen that made the device more affordable compared to other computers.

Peak of Fame

2009 was the year of the netbook. Consumers rushed in stores to get one and tech giants like Sony, HP and Toshiba developed their own versions of the tiny laptop. Also, analysts and experts were certain that the high netbook demand will also force Apple to join the market race. Moreover, tech specialists and insiders were certain that if that Apple didn’t release a netbook, the company would certainly suffer great losses. In addition, the 2009 predictions claimed that the amount of sold devices would reach nearly 45 million before the beginning of 2010. Others even stated that in 2013, there would be nearly 140 million sold units.

Rise of Tablets

However, none of these forecasts turned true. By the end of 2009 and the beginning of 2010, laptops increased their power and capacity and reduced their price and weight. Also, in 2010 Apple pleasantly surprised the world when it introduced its tablet called iPad. Back then, Steve Jobs confidently stated that the transitional device between computers and smartphones is the tablet. Jobs explained that this is due to the fact that tablets are better than the other two devices. He also said that the netbook can no longer take that place since it is inferior in quality compared to traditional computers and smart mobile phones.

It seems that Steve Jobs was right about that. Last year, tablets sold tens of millions of units while netbooks struggled to even make it to the market.


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