9-inch, SSD-based netbooks going down in price

Ask TR editors to pick a netbook, and we’ll probably settle on a 10″ model with mechanical storage. Many users seem to share that preference, too, because DigiTimes says netbook makers are applying “sharp” price cuts to 9″ SSD-based netbooks—supposedly a strategy to clear inventory in the face of reduced demand.

In September, we heard that Microsoft loosened restrictions to allow Windows XP to be pre-loaded on netbooks with 160GB hard drives. Many netbook makers have released 160GB systems since then, and DigiTimes says that has curbed the demand for systems with lower-capacity solid-state drives.

In response, Acer has reportedly dragged an 8GB, 8.9″ Aspire One to $6,999 TWD ($202) in Taiwan, while Asus has pulled a 20GB, 8.9″ Eee PC to $8,999 TWD ($260). As far as we can tell, though, such dramatic price cuts haven’t propagated into the U.S. market yet. Newegg still charges $400 for an Eee PC 900 with 16GB of flash memory.

Incidentally, Asus could be cutting prices as part of its plan to discontinue 9″ Eees entirely. An Asus executive revealed last week that his company will ship 10″ Eee PCs almost exclusively in 2009. A small number of 7″ Eees will also go out to telecom firms.

Comments closed
    • FranzVonPapen
    • 10 years ago

    If setup right, SSD netbooks, even the extra-slow 16GB MLC-flash eeePC 900 can be *[

      • ludi
      • 10 years ago

      Unfortunately, I believe you just described how to make a system unusable with Windows for all practical purposes. AFAIK most people with such limited browsing needs can get their fix with a smartphone.

        • FranzVonPapen
        • 10 years ago

        I believe you have it backwards. People with limited browsing needs, but perhaps wishing for a few Windows apps not available on their (even-tinier) smartphone can get their fix with a netbook. A netbook is not a laptop.

          • ludi
          • 10 years ago

          A netbook works just fine as a laptop for a substantial range of light duty use. Just kick out the SSD and get that HDD so that you can carry a decent amount of data with you and so that you’re not constanly waiting on the disk subsystem to finish strangling itself.

      • indeego
      • 10 years ago

      This is horrible advice.

      /[http://episteme.arstechnica.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/99609816/m/6010972175<]§ (driverguru knows his pagefile. :) /[

        • FranzVonPapen
        • 10 years ago

        You’re right, that was horrible advice you gave. Do you even own a netbook?

        NTFS features? *[

          • MadManOriginal
          • 10 years ago

          But in the end a HD-based netbook is going to be better than an ‘SSD’ (in quotes – applies to the cheap SSDs) based netbook.

    • Shinare
    • 10 years ago

    Having the first hand knowledge now of owning an 8GB SSD (+8 GB flash) netbook, I would certainly go with the mechanical drive option. The SSD in this acer one is soooo stinkin slow it tarnishes the whole netbook feeling.

    I’ve read how to hack the acer one with a much faster 233x compact flash but it requires physically cutting on the inside o the computer and the CF reader.

      • Voldenuit
      • 10 years ago

      Yeah, it’s often glossed over that the “SSD” drives in netbooks are more akin to flash/sdcard drives and nowere near as fast as the SATA SSDs you find in bigger notebooks.

      They were acceptable back when netbooks were hobby/toy novelties, but if you want to do anything with them, you really want to go with the mechanical drive option.

    • Hattig
    • 10 years ago

    It’s hard to resist the mechanical hard drive options, you get so much more capacity for the price. If it’s 8GB vs 120GB then you might put up with the minor noise and heat of a mechanical drive. Even though I know that an 8GB device is enough for most netbook uses.

    Then again I’ve just stuck Eclipse on my 2133, which is usable on the 1280×768 screen, if a little slow. Now I can do minor hacking whilst I watch TV or in the pub.

    It is a shame when 4/8/16 GB USB flash drives are so cheap that 4/8/16 GB IDE/SATA flash drives have a premium in netbooks. I think 16 or 32 GB will prove to be good for most, if it extends battery life and reduces noise and heat a little.

    • Rakhmaninov3
    • 10 years ago

    It would be pretty sweet to have a netbook for $200. That was the price range I’d always been hoping for with these….just slightly more than some cell phones.

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