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Intel: First Time PC Buyers Don't Get Netbooks

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 26 comments

Apparently, netbooks aren't the real deal.

Entry level computers for first-time computer buyers are usually inexpensive, no-frills, and usually just perform basic functions. The same descriptors could be applied to netbooks, Intel says that the little machines aren't appealing to those buying his or her first PC.

"I don't think first-time buyers are going to buy netbooks," Sean Maloney, Intel's general manager of sales and marketing, Intel Technology Summit on Wednesday in San Francisco, quoted by Reuters. "The first time you buy something you want the real deal. It's consistent not just in China, but all around the world."

"Netbooks are predominantly... a second or third purchase from someone who's already got a notebook," he said, according to Engadget. "The first time you buy something, you want the real deal. It's a human behavior thing... it's [the same] all around the world."

"If you're going to spend your hard-earned money for the first time, you're going to put a computer in your house," Maloney added.

This doesn't represent any change in stance at Intel, as it always maintained that netbooks were always a supplementary purchase for those who already owned a computer.

Netbooks are adequate machines for those only looking from a computer the ability to surf the internet and email – and this represents a large portion of internet users. Regardless of whether or not netbooks are attractive or viable first PC purchases, Intel's probably going to be pleased as long as it's one of its chips.

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  • 2 Hide
    chaohsiangchen , July 30, 2009 10:21 PM
    We can see how Intel and most netbook makers come to realize that netbook is auxiliary computer for non-intensive mobile computing, instead of a genre of its own with very limited use. People buy netbooks because they need a new laptop on the cheap, light and easy to carry. In most caes, that's what most consumers want.

    However, Intel's analysis is focused on developed market and China. Netbooks are very hot products in India and other developing economy due to its relative reasonable performance and lower price.

    Now I want to see more VIA NANO and AMD jumping into the market.
  • 5 Hide
    sot010174 , July 30, 2009 10:23 PM
    Well, a netbook for me is a upgraded PDA. Me as a computer technician use it as a great network debug tool. I've done countless ipconfigs, pings, puttys, vncs and I keep all network infos in treedbnotes. Can't live without it now. Have I said that I replaced paper notebooks at college with it?
  • 0 Hide
    ethanolson , July 30, 2009 10:45 PM
    Now all they need is one of those long-life (3-year) batteries like HP has (but not in their netbooks for some dumb reason).
  • Display all 26 comments.
  • 0 Hide
    maigo , July 30, 2009 10:46 PM
    I agree with Intel, I like my netbook but I'm not typing on it now
  • 3 Hide
    td854 , July 30, 2009 10:58 PM
    Do "first time pc buyers" even exist in this day and age?
  • 0 Hide
    aspireonelover , July 30, 2009 11:14 PM
    I'm using my netbook now :) 
    But I'm not the "first time" pc buyer. I'm like the 22nd time pc buyer.
    I use the netbook for internet browsing AND Let's just say, I wanna save the environment :D 
    btw intel, I totally agree with you
  • 0 Hide
    matt87_50 , July 31, 2009 12:49 AM
    breaking news: when people are only going to have one PC, they pick the more functional one. wow... insightful....
  • 1 Hide
    lifelesspoet , July 31, 2009 3:06 AM
    td854Do "first time pc buyers" even exist in this day and age?

    Yep, my brother, and he Just bought an aspire one netbook. To be fair, he was incarcerated for the last 14 years. There are a few holdouts in the world, mostly them that grew up before the internet got big and figured they didn't need it. There are also developing countries where low power netbooks make a lot of sense for first time purchases.
  • 0 Hide
    cabose369 , July 31, 2009 3:27 AM
    I own a netbook and I will tell you they are honestly the most useless things ever.

    They don't format web pages properly, you can't watch youtube videos without them chopping up, they are slow...

    Honestly, Netbooks are a WASTE OF MONEY!!!
  • 0 Hide
    QEFX , July 31, 2009 3:56 AM
    I still cannot understand how a netbook is useful, but maybe that's just me.

    Not enough CPU power to run a real app (photoshop, mathmatica, DB2, etc.), not enough GPU power to run a real game, not enough screen space to watch movies (I'm sorry I like a big screen with real speakers to watch movies not a 8" microscreen), and a keyboard so small you can't properly type on it. So it's good enough to check you e-mail, watching low-res youtube clips and some web surfing (some pages don't like the small screen) ... I can do that on my phone or PDA, which cost me less. Or I can buy a real, but low end, laptop for $100 more and actually have a real machine.

    P. T. Barnum must be enjoying all this.

  • 0 Hide
    jn77 , July 31, 2009 4:42 AM
  • -1 Hide
    jn77 , July 31, 2009 4:50 AM
    well maybe I am the odd one, I did not want to spend $5500 on a quad core, 16gb ram, centrino 2 with a 1920x1280 17 inch display and a 9 cell battery (yet) but I need that power on the road for photoshop as a mobile workstation.

    However I did pick up a Toshiba NB-205. Upgraded it to 2gb ram, a 500gb 7200rpm hd, windows 7 Ultimate RC (Aero interfce) Photoshop Elements, Nikon Capture, Guild Wars, Wow, Second Life, Crystal Reports, SQL 2008 etc on it, and now I wish I could bump it up to 4gb of ram because of its size. It would be nice if they put the dual core atom in it and I can always connect an external display if needed.

    And the battery lasts forever on it.

    That is how I am using my netbook...
  • 1 Hide
    griffed88 , July 31, 2009 12:30 PM
    I use to have an acer aspire one and I loved it. But what I ended up using it for (playing DotA with my buddies on the weekends) just couldn't cut it after awhile. It worked great, but would lag when more than a handful of characters where on screen. Also the novelty wore off after a few weeks of squinting to see the screen. For what they are intended to do(email, web browsing, word processing) they are awesome little machines, but I needed a bit more power and got an ASUS G50-VT X5, I love that machine and is more than powerful enough for some TF2, WoW, and L4D.
  • -3 Hide
    bk420 , July 31, 2009 12:50 PM
    Netbooks suck.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , July 31, 2009 3:18 PM
    I have both. My notebook and netbook. Netbook to try things out.
    Notebook for programs and gaming.
    My netbook (a 7" 800x480 pix, which was one of the first gen netbooks) was a little too small for many things.
    The Atom powered netbooks where a little more powerful,and had a slightly better resolution.
    The new pineview stuff coming up, I think it's gonna be fairly good for basic DX9 gaming, on a 600p screen, and I believe a good replacement for first laptops; as well as good battery life.

    I don't see what would be so much worse between a notebook or netbook soon,save the smaller space,and the little less computing power.
  • 0 Hide
    igot1forya , July 31, 2009 3:45 PM
    lifelesspoet To be fair, he was incarcerated for the last 14 years.

    Was it a Hacking crime?
  • 0 Hide
    christop , July 31, 2009 5:30 PM
    I like my netbook. I know it's not a power house. That is what my desktop is for... I bought the eepc after my crapple laptop died..
  • 0 Hide
    nachowarrior , July 31, 2009 9:03 PM
    people have no idea what they're buying most of the time weather it be a netbook, or a notebook, or a pc. They spend 700 bucks on a turd from wal*fart and then pick up a copy of nascar racing and get ticked off when it doesn't work. Or they go to buttbuy and pick out some pos craptop and a copy of crysis for their kid expecting it to run, all the while believing the BS that comes out of the employee's mouth. Articles like this need to encompass products as a whole rather than just netbooks. Lets face it. Companies like ACER and Alienware wouldn't exist if people weren't so ignorant.
  • 1 Hide
    apache_lives , August 1, 2009 12:20 AM
    Netbooks do not suck - there just the wrong type device for you, hell even a full sized notebook is useless for my needs - do i say there crap?
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , August 1, 2009 1:38 AM
    This is clearly just pandering to their shareholders, since it's well known that Atom is stealing sales from much higher margin parts. Occasionally executives have to go publicly defend their business decisions to protect their jobs, it happens everyday...
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