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Microsoft Wants to Call Netbooks Something Else

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 44 comments

Doesn't seem as catchy now, does it?

Just after Intel managed to free the term netbook from Psion for general use, Microsoft appears to be set on calling it something else – the low cost small notebook PC.

Steven Guggenheimer, a general manager at Microsoft, said in Taipei yesterday that the netbooks today are capable of doing much more than browsing the ‘net, so therefore the term should be abandoned.

Besides just throwing a monkey wrench into the segment, Microsoft’s desire to call netbooks “low cost notebook PCs” could stem from the company’s restrictions that it imposed on which machines could run certain versions of Windows.

Guggenheimer is to provide details on the apparent name shift later on, which we’ll bring to you as soon as we know more.

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Top Comments
  • 15 Hide
    tenor77 , June 3, 2009 5:08 PM
    It's a little wordy.
    Maybe you should call it "Low priced, entry level, internet browsing, compact portable computers"
  • 11 Hide
    icepick314 , June 3, 2009 4:58 PM
    how about just calling it "cheaptops" or maybe even just calling it "mini laptops" or something like that?

    no need to come up with some elaborate name....netbooks sound good enough....
Other Comments
  • 11 Hide
    icepick314 , June 3, 2009 4:58 PM
    how about just calling it "cheaptops" or maybe even just calling it "mini laptops" or something like that?

    no need to come up with some elaborate name....netbooks sound good enough....
  • Display all 44 comments.
  • -4 Hide
    830hobbes , June 3, 2009 5:07 PM
    Laptop Nanos?
  • 15 Hide
    tenor77 , June 3, 2009 5:08 PM
    It's a little wordy.
    Maybe you should call it "Low priced, entry level, internet browsing, compact portable computers"
  • 3 Hide
    Anonymous , June 3, 2009 5:18 PM
    Wouldn't "Notepad" be the obvious choice?
  • 3 Hide
    starryman , June 3, 2009 5:22 PM
    M$Books. Or BillBooks. Or BalmerBooks. Netbook is just fine.
  • 8 Hide
    WheelsOfConfusion , June 3, 2009 5:26 PM
    Why is MS suddenly interested in dictating not only what hardware can be used, but now what the hardware can be called?
  • 3 Hide
    grieve , June 3, 2009 5:32 PM
    "low cost notebook PCs"

    Microsoft throw the "PC" in there to seperate themselves from apple?

    Call them "IcheapPC"
  • 2 Hide
    AndrewMD , June 3, 2009 5:35 PM
    @ Wheelsofconfusion,

    Because people are used to that from the "APPLE" experience. Also, most complaints about Windows stem from people who run under powered systems or system that were not designed the latest and greatest!
  • -3 Hide
    jhansonxi , June 3, 2009 5:36 PM
    The original netbooks couldn't run Vista or Windows 7 so they increased the specs, price, and size while reducing battery life. Since these new netbooks are basically just renamed notebooks there isn't any reason to call them netbooks anymore. "Windows Fatbooks" makes more sense.
  • -1 Hide
    war2k9 , June 3, 2009 5:49 PM
    It should be Zunebook.
  • -3 Hide
    sublifer , June 3, 2009 5:51 PM
    May also have something to do with that lawsuit against them using the term netbook. now they have to come up with and popularize a new term and hope they don't get sued for that...
  • 0 Hide
    sublifer , June 3, 2009 5:52 PM
    hmmm microtops?
  • 0 Hide
    thearm , June 3, 2009 5:53 PM
    I agree. It's a logical name but I still don't like it.
  • 5 Hide
    mavroxur , June 3, 2009 5:54 PM
    Craptop?


  • 4 Hide
    phatboe , June 3, 2009 6:11 PM
    who cares what they are called. MS needs to be more worried about pricing windows competitively enough so that we can afford to install Win7 on a "netbook" while still being able to sell "netbooks" cheaply.
  • 2 Hide
    hellwig , June 3, 2009 6:15 PM
    notebook and PC is redundant. Are there super-computer notebooks or distributed computing notebooks? No. Microsoft needs to stop pandering to Apple marketing.

    Besides, Microsoft is trying to segment netbooks that use low-powered CPUs (like the Atom). You can buy a $500 notebook that has ATI graphics and a dual-core Athlon CPU. Just because its $500 should it be dropped in with all the crappy Atom+IntelGPU netbooks? No.

    If Microsoft wants to propose a new name, they should try one that doesn't suck.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , June 3, 2009 6:20 PM
    Netpad, because it is optimized for bpos
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , June 3, 2009 6:20 PM
    I like craptops.
  • -3 Hide
    roorunner , June 3, 2009 6:38 PM
    "Billfolds", There something simple and speaks tons
  • 1 Hide
    ivorycruncher , June 3, 2009 6:38 PM
    This is the dumbest thing Microsoft can do. The only logical reason I can think for doing it is that they want to rebrand it in a way that benefits only them.

    When a nickname for something sticks with people, you don't try to change it, no matter how much you think it doesn't make any sense. For example, a cable modem is NOT a modem, because "modem" is short for "modulator-demodulator" which basically means it's converting digital signals to analog and vice versa. A cable modem deals strictly with all digital signals, so there is no (de)modulating taking place, and therefore it's not a modem. Still, the term "modem" became the word commonly associated with a device that connects people to the internet, so even though it's no longer accurate, it's not worth trying to change. Once people have made a word/object association, they don't care whether it's inaccurate or not. Trying to change the word/object association will actually confuse people far more than leaving the inaccurate term in place.

    Furthermore, with the wired (or wireless, if you prefer) world we live in today, most kinds of work involve some sort of network or internet access. I find very few things I need or want to do on a laptop that can work locally without any internet. So, I argue that "netbook" is NOT an inaccurate term at all, and the all-encompassing phrase Microsoft wants to replace it with, though maybe slightly more accurate, is far too cumbersome to remember.

    Microsoft, I have three words for you: KNOCK IT OFF!!! If it ain't broken, don't try to fix it.
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