Recently, a friend of mine asked for my advice on selecting a suitable portable PC for his daughter. He was unable to decide whether to buy a Netbook or a Notebook or a Tablet. I am no computer expert. But he knew that I read a lot about new electronic products and also that I usually made a thorough study on the internet before buying such devices for me.
Some three years back, I thought of buying a portable machine (computer) for my personal use. At that time I was using a desktop PC and there was no means for me to connect to the net while I was away from home. I wanted to do some word processing work also. That was why I thought of buying a portable machine.
Netbook is the One Most Suitable for Me
At that time, an article about Netbooks appeared in a magazine and I happened to read it. It explained the many advantages and some disadvantages of this newer version of personal computer which was slowly gaining popularity. The main plus points listed were, 1) the low cost, 3) ultra portability due to the small size and the resulting reduction in weight, 3) capability to use Windows OS and softwares based on it. All these three features matched my requirements and I immediately fell in love with the little machine and acquired one in no time. The main disadvantages listed in the article, like 1) small screen size not comfortable to the eye to some, 2) the processor having lesser computing power compared to that of a regular PC, 3) absence of optical drive etc. were not enough to discourage me.
The Laptop is Too Heavy, She can’t Carry it Around
My friend, mentioned in the first paragraph above, had seen me working with my Netbook and thought it would be suitable for his daughter and asked my opinion about his buying one for her. The girl had been using a laptop PC from Toshiba when she was an engineering student. But the machine went out of order immediately after she left engineering college after graduating. She got employed in an I.T. firm after some time and wanted to buy another portable PC.
The Toshiba laptop she was using earlier was rather heavy, weighing nearly 3 kgs and it was never comfortable for her to carry it around. So, when my friend saw my Netbook, he thought it would be the right one for his daughter considering the small size and low weight of the machine. He asked me for an opinion about it. I told him,
“The Netbook is the right one for me. But it may not be like that for your daughter. You considered the size and weight of the Netbook only. There are other things also to consider before making a decision. Being an IT professional she may require a powerful computer. The Atom processor of the Netbook is not very powerful, but is sufficient for net surfing and word processing. However, it may not be suitable for programming works, video editing, graphic designing etc. You should ask your daughter to list her requirements first. Then only can we make the right decision.”
The Device Suitable for Me may not be Suitable for You
I think an Ultrabook is the right choice for her as she wants to minimize the weight of the machine. It has got a strong processer for heavy computing works and the weight is somewhat the same as that of a Netbook. A Notebook or Laptop also has a strong processor and large screen like an Ultrabook, but is much heavier. It costs much lesser than an Ultrabook. So, if weight doesn’t matter and price does, go for the Laptop or Notebook. A Netbook can be considered if one has only word processing and net surfing to do mainly and low weight and low price are the main criteria. But remember that the small screen size may not be comfortable to all.
I, now remember an incident. It is about my friend Buzz, who is a very prominent writer here at Expertscolumn. Sometime back, Buzz’s computer failed. He became unable to type down his articles. So, he was in an urgent need for a new computer. He bought a Tablet PC. I don’t know what made him make such a decision. Soon he was to find out that he had made the wrong selection. He was not comfortable with the tablet. The Android operating system on the tablet was the main problem. He was used to the Windows OS, but was not at all comfortable with the Android. I think some other factors like the small screen size, absence of a regular keyboard etc. make the tablet not suitable for typing lengthy articles. Anyhow, he had to discard the Tablet and purchase a Netbook instead. The absence of sufficient understanding of the device (the tablet) resulted in making the wrong choice.
The tablet, I think is more or less like a plaything. It is not suitable for serious works like typing a lengthy article. The absence of a regular keyboard makes it uncomfortable to type lengthy matters. But it may be useful for net surfing while on the move and also for e-book reading.
The Right Strategy
So, what should be our strategy when making such selections? A systematic approach should be there. First of all identify and list our requirements. Search the net for products available and list the features of each. Zero in on the one that matches with our requirements most. When buying from the local market, one can compare the price of the same product with different dealers and also can have a look at the different models.
There are umpteen products available and one should make a wise choice from them. The one that is suitable for me may not be suitable for you. The most important thing is that the one we choose should be able to meet all our requirements, yet be priced within our budget. Buying from a local dealer will be always advantageous as he may be able to provide proper service for the device when needed. Always go for a brand that is reputed for quality and prompt service. Take some time to make a decision and don’t hurry, for it may result in worry later.
Read my article on Ultrabooks
Read my article on Netbook