Laptops are sooo 2007. Their cheaper, smaller, lighter cousins -- netbooks -- are getting better, faster and more practical.
According to James Brehm, consumer electronics analyst with Frost & Sullivan, consumers bought about 500,000 netbooks in 2007, 12 million in 2008 and will likely buy 30 million in 2009.
Most netbooks are still priced at around $350 or more, but some are creeping down below $300 for the holiday season.
One powerful option in the sub-$300 range is the HP mini 110 series, which sports a 160 GB hard drive, 1 GB of memory, Intel Atom processor, built-in Web cam and microphone. Not bad for a 2.3 lb. computer.
But, as with all netbooks, there are a few drawbacks. The HP mini is definitely not a primary PC, and there's no optical drive, which means you can't use it to watch DVDs. And if you're looking for a netbook that can run Windows 7 Starter Edition, look elsewhere -- the HP Mini 110 series is stuck on Windows XP.NEXT: iPod Nano 8GB: $149