5 Tips when Purchasing a Mini Laptop

Published: 07th January 2009
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Although mini laptops are inexpensive, it doesn't mean you should go ahead and buy the first mini laptop model that comes your way. There is an art to shopping for mini laptops, and if you want to buy a mini laptop, here are some tips to consider:

1.Consider Your Requirements

There are roughly two types of mini laptops in the market today, Solid State Drives (SSD) mini laptops and Hard Disk Drives (HDD) mini laptops. SSD mini laptops boot faster, are able to withstand impact and are generally more reliable performance-wise. But they are also notorious for having low storage capacities. SSD mini laptops that do have high storage capacities are very expensive. On the other hand, HDD mini laptops can store up to 160GB of data but are less tough than their SSD counterparts . So what does this have to do with you? It's all about your needs and wants. Do you need a fast mini laptop with low storage or a mini laptop with high capacity but boots slower?

2.Consider the Brand

Out in the market, there are many mini laptops brands. ASUS definitely created the mini laptop market in 2007, but Acer, Lenovo, HP, Dell, and MSI followed soon after. Different manufacturers have different reputations, e.g., Asus for small keyboards. Different brands of mini laptops are known for different things, and it does pay if you research on what these are.

3.Windows XP or Linux?

Like the desktop computers where there is a lingering competition between Mac and Windows, there is competition between Windows XP and the different Linux versions. The only difference is that manufactures ship mini laptop models in both operating systems. For practically every mini laptop model, there is a Windows XP or a Linux version. While Linux netooks are known for their stability and security (Linux users rarely, if ever, complain about malware and virus infection on their machines), Windows XP mini laptops have the advantage of popularity. Many computer users are so used to using Windows XP, it's very difficult to switch paradigms to use a Linux. The fact is, users of Linux mini laptops are more likely to return their mini laptops than Windows XP users.

4.Read User Reviews

User reviews give you insight on the actual performance of a netboook. Manufacturers will always hype their product whenever they can to boost sales, so do not expect an objective product review from them. If you want to know the rundown on a particular mini laptop model, read up on independent product reviews by online computer magazines. You can also search for forums on the different mini laptop models.

5.Comparison Shop

Never settle for the first price you see on a shopping website. Compare prices from at least three mini laptop sellers before ordering. Some websites are able to sell their mini laptops cheaper than others because they have made larger wholesale orders. Still, others sell cheaper because they are selling second hand. In any case, just make sure you are dealing with a reputable website.

John Kessler is a self-described geek and gadget lover. Take a look at his Mini Laptop Comparison at http://www.CompareMiniLaptops.com.

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