Poll: Which is better: Netbook or smartphone?

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CNET Editor

Craig was sucked into the endless vortex of tech at an early age, only to be spat back out babbling things like "phase-locked-loop crystal oscillators!". Mostly this receives a pat on the head from the listener, followed closely by a question about what laptop they should buy.

Which is better: smartphone or netbook?

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Convergence is a strong force in the tech sector — and two devices are currently duking it out to be your favourite way of consuming data on the go.

In the red corner, we have the netbook — a low powered mini-laptop that's good enough to watch DVD quality movies on, and can allow those on the go to edit spreadsheets and write documents a whole lot easier than any phone ever could. It can get online almost anywhere, and with a ridiculously long battery life it's the perfect travel companion.

In the blue corner though is the smartphone — with increasingly bigger screens, faster processors, touch-enabled interfaces and the ability to be simply slipped in the pocket, the likes of Apple's iPhone and Google's Nexus One would prefer if you never even looked at those nasty netbook things.

Let us not forget though the impending, forever rumoured but not-yet-true Apple tablet, which threatens to muscle its way into the same space for a share of your eyeball time.

So what's it going to be CNETters? Netbook, smartphone or tablet?

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Zii posted a comment   

I'd rather have both the Netbook and the Smartphone in my arsenal.


Travel Happy posted a comment   

Ever tried booking a hotel and paying for it on a phone?

The netbook is great when you're travelling and wanting to check out options in a table format and go on to purchase flights, tickets or hotels, online.

Sure, you can go to an Internet Cafe, but who wants to put in their CC details on one of those computers?


Micky posted a comment   

I think you've hit the nail on the head when it comes to netbooks being the ultimate travel companion. I do a lot of back-packing and my netbook allows me to do more involved computing (typing up 2000 word reports, reading the news, editing spreadsheets, etc) with a minimum of fuss. I think smartphones are great but for anything longer than typing 2-3 lines you need a netbook.

Of course, for people who don't tend to travel a lot and already have a smart phone and decent computer, I don't see that a netbook is really essential. Moreover, many people still don't really get the limitations of the Atom processor - thus buying a netbook with the expectations it will work exactly the same as a higher powered computer.

The National Secondary Schools Computer Fund in 2009 which saw grants of Lenovo netbooks to all State school children in Year 9 wasn't particularly well thought out, IMO.


JohnG2 posted a comment   

after the n900 came out, all was changed, no reason for netbooks


Morn posted a comment   

You're gonna need a smart phone anyway, and it will do nearly everything a netbook will quite well. Except perhaps word processing.
So why do I need a netbook, I've got a laptop already, and a smart phone, just don't see what extra utility a netbook provides.


sharan posted a reply   

i recon a smartfone...coz it does everything of the netbook and also can be use as a fone and a internet modem!!!

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