Asus introduces the 1015E notebook for $299: Rebirth of the netbook?

Asus may have kick-started the netbook market when the company launched the first Eee PC in 2007. But it’s been more than a year since the company introduced a new laptop with a 10 inch or smaller display.

Now the company is trying to breathe new life into the cheap 10 inch notebook market with the Asus 1015E.

Asus 1015E

This little laptop features a 1.1 GHz Intel Celeron 847 dual core processor, 2GB of RAM, a 320GB hard drive, and a 10.1 inc, 1366 x 768 pixel display. It ships with Windows 8 and sells for $299. The Asus product page suggests Ubuntu Linux version may also be available at some point.

That gives it a much faster processor and higher resolution display than most netbooks released to date.

Some folks would say those specs mean it’s not a netbook, but it sort of depends on your definition. In my book, a netbook is a notebook with a 10 inch or smaller display and a low price tag.

The Asus 1015E fits squarely into that space. But whatever you call it, you’d be hard pressed to find a computer this small, this cheap, and with this much power.

For $299 you can get a model with a 6 cell battery, but a 3 cell battery is also available if you want a thinner laptop.

The notebook features HDMI and VGA ports, an Ethernet jack, 2 USB 2.0 ports, and 1 USB 3.0 port. It supports up to 4GB of RAM, and weighs 2.4 pounds with a 3 cell battery.

It measures 10.3″ x 7″ x 1.4″ and weighs 2.8 pounds with a 6 cell battery. That makes it both thicker, but also lighter than your average ultrabook with an 11.6 inch or larger screen.

While the Intel Celeron 847 CPU that powers this little notebook isn’t exactly a speed demon, it’s much faster than the Atom chips that have powered most netbooks up until now. It’s the same chip that powers the Acer C7 Chromebook I reviewed a few months ago.

via Notebook Italia

  • fwupow

    More power, more RAM and more vertical resolution definitely welcome,but Win8 not so much. My 1005PE cost near $400.00 back a few years ago.

    • http://www.liliputing.com/ Brad Linder

      Windows 8 has a bad rep. I’ve been using it for about half a year on my Samsung S9 ultrabook (without a touchscreen), and it’s basically a fast-booting Windows 7 with a Start Screen instead of a Start Menu.

      There’s nothing I can do on my Windows 7 desktop that I can’t do at least as well on my Windows 8 notebook.

      I don’t really mind the start screen, since it’s not something you actually have to use very often. And if you really hate it, you can install a third party app to add a more traditional start menu.

  • gman

    Wow, nice story Brad. I think this is funny. I think this is a soon-to-be best seller. This is actually kind of crazy. I was suggesting that give consumers a 10-incher with non touch at a good price point and you have a winner. If touchscreen puts the price too high, then this is a real sweet spot. Asus pulled a fast one imo.

  • BoloMKXXVIII

    Fixable. Just add Start8 or Classic Shell. Linux Mint would be good too. I wish I was in the market for another laptop/netbook because I would buy this in a minute!

  • David Fahey

    Should appeal to Microsoft Office folk.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chase-Baggett/502688613 Chase Baggett

    Acer C7 is better value if you plan to use linux. Still a good deal though.

    • CyberGusa

      Why? You can put Linux on this model too, even easier because you don’t need to work with the Developer Mode like you do on a Chromebook!

      While they’re using the same processor, Acer C7 is just under clocked to 800MHz… So this Asus will actually give a tad bit more performance!

      Besides, Support Page indicates it comes with either Windows 8 or Linux Ubuntu!

      • Ken08534

        Acer C7 is $100 cheaper AND comes with a two year, 100 Gig “Google Cloud Drive”

      • CyberGusa

        You’re obviously not factoring the fact the CPU is under clocked to 800MHz, lowering the actual value of the hardware, and also only the 3 cell battery version is the only one actually $200, but the 6 cell version is $50 more!

        While the 1015E could be considered to have some added benefits with it’s smaller size, the C7 is larger at 11.6″, and people who prefer portability can appreciate that… along with a matte screen, which on the C7 is glossy, and the 1015E is also lighter and thinner!

        Some features like the fact the 1015E also has a USB 3 port and not just USB 2 ports helps increase the value of the hardware with the greater range of options it provides.

        Though, the Google Cloud Drive 100GB is something Google is doing to sweeten the deal considerably but it’s only for 2 years and won’t appeal to everyone as not everyone can rely on constant access or has the broad band speeds needed to really make that much capacity useful vs overkill. So will depend on the individual as to whether that will be a deciding factor or not…

        Mind people can still also get pretty good capacity for free and without purchasing a Chromebook, and stack it up by combining different services.

        Besides, needing to work with a Developer’s Mode just to run a Linux distro is added work and not all distros will have the support to make that any easier.

  • Danilo

    I used to have an HP Mini 2140 which sported this exact resolution on a 10″ screen. And it was classified as a netbook. Which means it’s not “higer resolution than any netbook released to date”.

    • CyberGusa

      Higher resolution options did occur, but they were extremely rare for netbooks!

  • Jimmy

    I’d actually want something smaller like the Vaio P or that Lenovo UMPC concept that was never released.

    • someone

      I’d like a new Vaio P. Something not made by Sony would be preferable mostly because of subjective reasons.

  • ne-yo-gabba-gabba-hey

    Wow. I was in the market last month for a machine to replace a 1001PX and settled on a Thinkpad X131e with very similar specs. It’s slightly heavier and larger but cost 50% more. If this netbook were available, I would have bought it without hesitation. The 6-cell battery and vertical resolution are absolutely killer features here.

  • http://home.comcast.net/~tomleem BigGoofyGuy

    I think it is an excellent deal for a portable computer. I think netbook fits it quite well. I think Windows 7 would be better than Windows 8 (IMO; Win 8 is more for touch screens and tablet computers). I really like the Asus brand.

  • gman

    Brad just thinking of this, it’s put you in a dilly of a pickle. You know I’m a sucker for terminology. Hopefully this one doesn’t keep you up at night. Just curious if you think there is a Microsoft restriction on companies calling similar products as netbooks? Asus is using “mini notebook” but let’s be honest about that. I know you hate terms, but this falls within your own definition. Just wondering what you think about why Asus went in this direction. It’s not just me noticing, there are plenty of Asus Facebook posts about terminology used to describe this. I find the whole thing kind of comical. Do you think people rubbed netbook as being “junk” and it’s avoidance at this point? Seems kind of silly to me.

    • http://www.liliputing.com/ Brad Linder

      Netbooks *are* notebooks, just like ultrabooks are. So there’s nothing wrong with simply calling this a small notebook, a mini laptop, or whatever.

      Microsoft never put any restrictions on anything based on the word “netbook,” and while Psion tried to claim it had the trademark to the term, in the end I don’t think any company (Intel, Microsoft, or anyone else) really had exclusive rights to it the way Intel does with ultrabook.

      Microsoft’s requirements were more along the lines that PC makers could only get cheap Windows licenses (initially Windows XP after it had been otherwise discontinued, and later Windows 7 Starter) by adhering to certain restrictions on screen size, processor, etc.

      I think it’d be smart for most companies to resist calling a notebook like this a netbook, because right or wrong, the term has been ridiculed a lot over the past few years.

      I may have done it in my headline… but that’s because long-time readers of this blog have actually been clamoring for a new, more powerful netbook for years. But if I were Asus I’d just call this machine a notebook too. It’ll keep people who don’t pay attention to specs from automatically assuming it’s an underpowered machine that’s only good for web surfing.

      • gman

        Thanks for the reply. For sure they are all laptops. I think most consumers are passed the whole netbook means “underpowered machine that’s only good for web surfing” aspect. I think we could agree that this is not powerful and that if you had intensive plans you will be sorely disappointed in it. That’s where more accurate descriptions make sense to the consumer. I respect the fact that you aren’t selling out as it were even though you have the most to gain when it comes to the term “netbook”. I think you know where I’m coming from on that one. Again though, I appreciate the reply. You operate a website and know more than the average consumer how choice of words play on web based content. Heck I’m 100% biased on this and I can admit it.

      • http://www.liliputing.com/ Brad Linder

        Eh, it doesn’t really matter to me what people call it. I know you think that Liliputing gets a huge portion of the internet’s search traffic for the word “netbook,” but I don’t think that’s true… and I don’t think many people are searching for the word anyway, so the share would be small. :)

      • garamond

        How about we call little laptops “lilbooks”?

      • Ken08534

        I have the Acer 1830T Netbook w/ 11″ screen, quad core i7 processor, 8 Gigs of RAM, and a 500 Gig HD. It includes HDMI and VGA outputs and I picked it up several months ago for under $500 as I recall (at Wal-Mart?)

        It is excellent, here’s a review: http://www.notebookreview.com/default.asp?newsID=5903&review=acer+aspire+1830t+timeline+x

        I’d call it a netbook, but that’s because it’s so darn small compared to mainstream notebooks.

  • Greg

    @bradlinder:disqus would you say it’s better to get the Windows 8 version versus the Ubuntu one? I personally want to play around on Ubuntu but I feel like if I purchase the Windows 8 version I can always install Ubuntu if I really want. Would you be able to do the opposite if you purchase the Ubuntu version and later want to install Windows instead?

  • http://twitter.com/V_U vēer

    Cool netbook, basically stripped down and smaller version of X201e ultrabook that Im installing Win7 updates at the moment. Now, I havent tested it much, but mine with the same CPU get really hot – up to 85% and that was without stressing it much!
    I wonder whats the temp with even smaller size?

  • ap3604

    The Asus website says this comes in a matte (no glossy! yay!) version.

    Does anyone know where I could actually find a matte version though? :(

    • Greg

      I just ordered one from bhphotovideo.com and I believe it says matte version. I also want the matte and not the glossy.

  • ganon

    The netbook strikes back! :-) Looks like good bang for the bucks. These have one advantage over chromebooks if you do presentations/lectures: it has both VGA and HDMI out.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Gregg-Jones/527975393 Gregg Jones

      The Acer C7 Chromebook also has both HDMI and VGA. A bigger screen. Can run Ubuntu as well as ChromeOS. And it’s $16 cheaper.

      • bearKing

        But it’s an acer..

  • David

    NO GLOSSY SCREEN! Yayyy…! Too bad it is hobbled with Win8. But still a nice move ASUS. Now get rid of the glossy screens on your other models – please.

  • jezra

    “The Asus product page suggests Ubuntu Linux version may also be available at some point.” Can someone provide a link to this please?

  • missinglink

    I’m using a Asus 1025C, upgraded to 2GB and a 128GB SSD. Win 7 Home Premium and Debian Sid (Linux BBQ Trollinger). Matte screen – yes. Only 32 bit.
    1024X600 renders ok.

    Had to split the case to get inside, as the 1025 (and it appears this new 1015E) have no ram/hd access.

    One of you pioneers see if the 1025E has Linux issues and report back. Don’t see the Ubuntu version for sale yet…