Microsoft's Dumb New Name for Netbooks

Betraying an apparent hatred of all things simple, easy and natural, one of Microsoft's top marketers announced yesterday that Redmond will no longer be using the term "netbook" to describe mini-notebooks like the Dell Mini 9 or Asus Eee PC. Microsoft's new moniker: "low-cost small notebook PC."

That piece of brilliance is attributable to Steven Guggenheimer, Microsoft's GM of application platform and development marketing, at the Computex conference in Taipei this week. (Below, Guggenheimer at the conference; Photo courtesy of Marvin Ma, Digitimes).

web-image-0501ba33c3daf9dbec6d8e35f5f8bc4aGuggenheimer says his argument is rooted in semantics: netbooks are powerful enough to do more than just surf the Net, he said, so it's time to abandon the term "netbook". But as Digitimes points out, the relabeling may just be a way for Microsoft to recategorize some netbooks in a way that will force OEMs to buy a higher-functioning version of Windows 7, reserving its cheaper "Starter Edition" for truly low-functioning UMPCs.

[Via Digitimes]

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  • Karen Kelly

    Well, I'm running Windows 7 Ultimate on an EEE PC 1000HE, and I see no reason that a higher version of Win 7 on a netbook-class computer could possibly be a bad thing. With the HD audio and video-out capabilities, why would I not want to take advantage of these features with my OS?

    If you buy a small computer with power and features, it just makes sense that you'd want to use them. Yeah, the naming thing is dumb, but then again, the current generation of netbook is hardly limited to surfing the internet, so ...