Part of the Personal computing glossary:

A netbook is a small, light, low-power notebook computer that has less processing power than a full-sized laptop but is still suitable for word processing, running a Web browser and connecting wirelessly to the Internet. 

Netbooks fall into a category of what vendors refer to as “small form” computers. Such computers have been known by various names, including subnotebook, ultra-portable, mini-notebook, mini-thin client, cloudbook and ultra-mobile PC. The generic name netbook, however, is currently the most popular marketing buzzword. Typically, a netbook will have a slimmed-down operating system, a smaller-than-usual keyboard, a smaller-than-usual screen and very little (if any) storage space. 

Initially targeted at the education market or consumers who might want a second computer, netbooks are gaining a broader consumer base now that budgets are tight and consumers around the world are starting to feel comfortable using applications and media in the cloud. In 2009, netbook sales increased more than 100% over 2008.

Learn More:

Intel blogger Paul Bergevin foresees two markets for netbooks.

Wikipedia maintains a comparison table for netbooks.

Matt Buchanan at Gizmodo takes a stab at defining all the names vendors use to describe small notebook computers.

This was last updated in December 2009
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms

Definitions

  • smartphone sensor

    - A smartphone sensor is any one of a number of different types of sensing devices installed on a user's phone to gather data for various user purposes, often in conjunction with a mobile app. (WhatIs.com)

  • respawning cookie

    - A respawning cookie is a standard HTTP cookie backed up by data stored in additional files that are used to rebuild the original cookie when the user visits the originating site again. A 2009 study... (WhatIs.com)

  • Flash cookie

    - Flash cookies, also known as local shared objects (LSO), are text files stored on a user’s hard drive when a browsers requests content that's supported by Adobe Flash. (WhatIs.com)

Glossaries

  • Personal computing

    - Terms related to personal computers, including definitions about computers sold as consumer products and words and phrases about laptops, tablets and smartphones.

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question. Find an Answer.Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Ask An IT Question

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Ask Question

Tech TalkComment

Share
Comments

    Results

    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.