Linked by the_randymon on Wed 2nd Jan 2013 22:01 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems Asus is the company that shook up the laptop market a couple of years ago with their introduction of the EeePC netbook. And with their announcement that they will no longer be producing netbooks in 2013, Charles Arthur over at the Guardian UK has declared that the netbook era has now come to an end. Sad news for those of us who still love our netbooks! Harry McCracken over at Time Mag thinks they'll be back. Anybody who spends time wiping the smears off their tablet's touchscreen might agree.
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That said its obvious who killed the netbook...Steve Ballmer. He raised the price of Windows from the $15-$25 they were paying for XP to nearly $40 just for basic and by doing so simply made netbooks a money losing proposition.

I think the consumer gets to take some of the blame too, although I agree Ballmer made a big effort to stick a fork in netbooks. But the consumer saw the first EEEPCs and said "I love it, but wish it ran Windows instead of this weird Linux thing made by Xandros." Then when it got Windows consumers wished it had more capacity, so they went with hard drives instead of SSDs. Then they wanted a slightly bigger keyboard. And boom, they were back to having a Windows laptop.

Then the ipad came along, which looked and acted sufficiently different consumers realized they couldn't just wish it were more like the Windows laptops they were accustomed to, and buckled down to figure out the new interface. (Having tons of cool apps didn't hurt).

My point is, I feel like the market bent to consumer will (and Ballmer's shotgun) and netbooks got warped back into the 'familiar format' everyone knows and actually kind of hates. And when they finally got what they wanted they realized they actually don't like it.

Ipads also turned heads because they were 'new' and it was a nice change from XP/Vista.

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