People keep saying that netbooks are dead, and they're right: size, features and pricing have all but merged back into the mainstream, making them little less than unpleasant laptops. With the Skylight, announced today
, Lenovo puts new technology -- Qualcomm's Snapdragon CPU and a custom UI -- into reviving the svelte, simple, good-enough notebooks that got us so excited three years ago.
We're apparently supposed to call this one a "smartbook," but that's just a marketing line already buried in an international purse fight over trademark ownership
*. It's really just a new generation of netbooks that benefit from a few critical differences to the standard fare, keeping form factor small and mandating smartphone-style connectivity. The Skylight doesn't come with Windows, OSX or even (it seems) a fully-featured linux distro, which creates breathing room for its hardware--think smartphone operating systems--even as it creates a new hurdle for buyers in the lack of available software. It should suffice to say that there is much talk of 'the cloud,' and various web-based services, in the press release.
The hardware is nice: seamless-handoff Wifi and 3G, a 20GB SSD, a big keyboard and a 10-inch 1280x720 display. This matches what's on offer from the likes of Dell and Asus, but in an exceedingly slim body that adds the ultralight cachet currently reserved for expensive super-netbooks like Sony's Vaio X and the MacBook Air. It will come in blue and red and boasts 10 PR hours of battery life.
It'll be $500 at 'full retail' price, too, implying that getting it from AT&T with 3G will be significantly cheaper. (alternatively: if you have to agree to a two-year agreement to get the $500 price tag, it's a swizz).
Assuming Skylight won't just be carrier contract bait, the key will not be the oft-assumed matter of Snapdragon's performance, but rather the user experience offered by the whole package. I'd call it the 'iPhone factor,' but really, that sets an unfairly high bar. If you remember the experience of actually using
Asus' original Eee PC, you'll probably be happy just to get a linux netbook that doesn't make you want to throw it into the sea.
* As an aside, this may help explain some of Microsoft's most demented branding failures -- it knows that all the good phrases are already taken and isn't up for a fight. Recall, if you will, Redmond's attempt to rename netbooks as LCSNPCs. Bing it on your Zune!
A Pittsburgh-area man was charged with disorderly conduct after telling Verizon store staff that he was “definitely part of ISIS” and talking about ISIS on the store’s demo handsets. When asked to leave the store, Fleming said “he wouldn’t leave the store and that he was definitely part of ISIS,” the complaint said. He also […]
Last year’s Hello Barbie chatbot toy sent all your kid’s speech to cloud servers operated by Mattel and its tech partner, but only when your kid held down Barbie’s listen button — new chatbot toys like My Friend Cayla and the i-Que Intelligent Robot are in constant listening mode — as is your “OK Google” […]
If you’re one of the 60% of Pebble employees who didn’t get a job offer from Fitbit, the company’s new owner, you’re probably not having a great Christmas season — but that trepedation is shared by 100% of Pebble customers, who’ve just learned (via the fine print on an update on the Pebble Kickstarter page) […]
The Boing Boing Store’s Gift Guide is full of ideas for pretty much anyone in your life like hipster ice cub trays, Xbox controllers, Halo Boards, and even diamond necklaces. As always, all products in the Boing Boing Store come at great discounts, too. Shop by price bucket starting at under $20. Under $20:Bloxx Jumbo Ice Trays […]
Unlike traditional lighters, the SaberLight features an electronic plasma beam that’s both rechargeable and butane-free. This sleek lighter is even approved by TSA, so you’ll never be stuck buying lighters you’ll just have to throw away partially used. For some people, like me, this is a pretty big game-changer. The SaberLight’s beam is actually both hotter and cleaner […]
Holiday shopping is in full swing, and the Striiv Touch is one of the best gift ideas I’ve landed on. Its simple design works for females and males, and its wide range of features makes it suitable for even the non-fitness enthusiasts in your life.Unlike traditional fitness trackers, the Striiv Touch also acts as a smartwatch. It […]