Report: HP, Dell could move away from 10” netbooks

After the explosion of netbooks we witnessed these past two years, we may now see a reduction in their numbers. Quoting sources at notebook makers, the folks at DigiTimes report that both HP and Dell have "significantly reduced their investments" in 10" netbooks—the most popular type on the market right now.

Because of lower-than-expected profits from Pine Trail netbooks, HP is reportedly going so far as to consider pulling out of the 10" netbook market altogether and focusing on 11.6", AMD-powered systems. We can’t see any such AMD-based ultraportables on HP’s website yet, however; the smallest machine with that kind of hardware looks to be the 13.3" Pavilion dm3z.

DigiTimes goes on to point out that the netbook arena has gotten much less crowded in recent months. While Acer, Asus, and Samsung still have strong footholds, the site adds that "most of the second-tier and white-box netbook vendors" have left the market—allegedly as a result of price cuts first-tier vendors carried out in the second half of last year.

We saw a similar shift in the netbook market about a year ago, when word got out that Asus planned to phase out netbooks with 9" displays. Today, searching for netbooks at Newegg shows two 7" systems, four 9" ones, and a whopping 92 netbooks with 10" panels. Many of those 10" machines indeed seem to be from Acer (including its subsidiary Gateway), Asus, and Samsung, but we’re seeing quite a few MSI netbooks listed, as well.

Comments closed
    • ImSpartacus
    • 13 years ago

    Those would be smartbooks because they aren’t x86 based.

    • ImSpartacus
    • 13 years ago

    No kidding. I mean, people are buying the iPad, right?

    • clone
    • 13 years ago

    netbooks didn’t force laptop prices down the same vendors offering netbooks still offer notebooks…. what a notably odd position……. technology improvements and vendor competition reduced notebook pricing.

    personally I’ve always despised netbooks not because the idea is horrid…. small, cheap, good performance & long battery life…. great.

    we never got that.

    size has a sweet spot above 10 inches, price was high for what was offered, the performance dubious and the longer battery life only prolonged the agony.

    • nexxcat
    • 13 years ago

    You can fit one into your suit pocket? What do you wear, a 58R? It must bulge something fierce, and if not, I suggest you find a better tailor 🙂

    • dragmor
    • 13 years ago

    10″ is the max I can fit in my suit pocket. Give me a 9″ to 10″ with at least 1280×800 res. The Sony unit with 1600×900 is great.

    • Decelerate
    • 13 years ago

    I have a 12″, but it’s called a laptop.

    Where does the netbook end? (I thought it was @ 10″)

    • ludi
    • 13 years ago

    …and transform into an Aston Martin on command.

    • mattthemuppet
    • 13 years ago

    presumably because the manufacturer gave up some of their Atom+chipset discount in order to put it in a non-canon higher margin large screen laptop

    • WasF
    • 13 years ago

    The best netbook should..
    not break!

    • Majiir Paktu
    • 13 years ago

    So how do you explain my computer that packs an Atom processor and a 12″ screen?

    • OneArmedScissor
    • 13 years ago

    Intel doesn’t let anyone use their Atom package deal thingers for anything larger than 10″. There are all sorts of restrictions, which is the only reason there’s a netbook distinction at all. It’s completely fudged.

    • swampfox
    • 13 years ago

    … and 12 hours of battery life.

    • grantmeaname
    • 13 years ago

    The best netbook would be 12.1″, 8 ounces, and faster than a C2Q, with a beastly GPU to match and a nice screen res.

    • Bombadil
    • 13 years ago

    I had a 11.6″ notebook and its LCD was complete garbage compared to my 1000HA. And it seems like all other 11.6″ LCDs are just as bad if not worse. I’d definitely like something smaller than the 1000HA, and screen size is irrelevant. Higher resolution would be nice. I’d like to try a VAIO P-series w/ the 8″ 1600×768 LCD.

    • Ushio01
    • 13 years ago

    5″ screen is a slate with a phone feature not something I would call portable, I already think the 4″ LG BL40 chocolate is far to big as it is and a phone you can’t slip in your pocket misses the point of it being a mobile phone. Unless were going retro and bringing back the brick phones of the 80’s.

    • swaaye
    • 13 years ago

    They are already around, you know. They cost more of course. Once you get to 12-13″ the number of options shoots up because that’s subnotebook zone.

    • swaaye
    • 13 years ago

    Oh yeah I too miss the days when the only small notebooks were up around $1500. Those machines are still around, so feel free to go that route if netbooks make you angry.

    • KikassAssassin
    • 13 years ago

    Netbooks are responsible for CULV processors coming down to reasonable prices. Prior to netbooks showing that there’s a market for cheap, low-power notebooks with good battery life, ULV CPUs were only found in extremely expensive high-class notebooks. I don’t really have any use for a netbook, but I appreciate that they’re the reason notebooks like my UL80Vt are able to exist.

    • w00tstock
    • 13 years ago

    Sure they can.

    • ludi
    • 13 years ago

    If it hadn’t been for netbooks, you might not have options like the Acer 14xx series and the 18xx Timeline series at 11″ sizes and prices as low as $400. Just because a market takes a while to mature, doesn’t mean it’s a “stupid fad”. 50 million early adopters can’t all be wrong.

    • thecoldanddarkone
    • 13 years ago

    I approve of your message.

    • Shining Arcanine
    • 13 years ago

    Where are the ARM netbooks? 🙁

    • dpaus
    • 13 years ago

    l[

    • Hattig
    • 13 years ago

    The main selling point was the price, and that’s what Asus, Acer and Samsung get right with their netbooks.

    I got a HP2133 (slow VIA CPU though) for half price about 18 months ago, and it has been useful and well built, but over-featured (ExpressCard slot!). It can just about do Farmville, other games can take a hike! Video, well, yeah. Victim of VIA’s appallingly slow chipset development program. CPU? Slow, but passable – again a victim of VIA’s appalling slow CPU development (and release to sale) program. Where’s their Nano processor!

    Anyway, the 8.9″ screen is just a little too small, and compromises the (otherwise excellent) keyboard’s size. High res display though, but I think the 11.6″ 1366×768 devices have better usability overall.

    • indeego
    • 13 years ago

    The best netbook should be an ultraportable with a real processor and have 11.6-13 inch screen with 3-3.5 pounds of weight.
    g{

    • BoBzeBuilder
    • 13 years ago

    Netbooks were a stupid fad. I’m glad it’s dying.

    • jdaven
    • 13 years ago

    “HP and Dell have “significantly reduced their investments” in 10″ netbooks—the most popular type on the market right now”

    I don’t think 10″ was popular due to customers liking the screen size. I think it was just the only choice on the market because it was the largest screen most companies were willing to put in the majority of the netbooks and get enough margins on them. 11″ and higher would have been more popular if the panels were cheaper and the list prices were the same as current 10″.

    • tejas84
    • 13 years ago

    So AMD CEO Dirk Meyer was right. These netbooks were a fad!

    • alsoRun
    • 13 years ago

    I have two netbooks, one has 10″ and the other 11.6 screens. The difference of viewing experience is dramatic. 10 inch is simply too small. The best netbook should have 11.6-13 inch screen with 3-3.5 pounds of weight.

    • potatochobit
    • 13 years ago

    I have not bought a netbook yet

    seems not a worthwhile buy if i cant play simple games other than point and click

    watching movies is cool, but browsing on the go, my iphone can do that

    • OneArmedScissor
    • 13 years ago

    “Because of lower-than-expected profits from Pine Trail netbooks”

    Just profits, or sales in general? Somehow I doubt that the profit margins are the issue.

    They lost me with the apparent $300 minimum for Pine Trail netbooks, when the whole point of those changes was to lower the production cost. Previous generation netbooks had already been selling for $200-250.

    They need to price these things so that it’s just another everyday device to people, like MP3 players, or the “netbook” distinction is going to become increasingly meaningless.

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