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).
Guggenheimer 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.