I just got a pitch for a new device called the Netbook Navigator. The company is taking pre-orders for a 3G-enabled 8.9 inch tablet PC with a multitouch display, 32GB SSD, Windows 7 Home Premium, and no keyboard. It’s a nice looking machine. But the $1199 asking price seems pretty high, especially since the company is throwing around the word “netbook” rather liberally. Last time I checked, netbook meant small, cheap computers with keyboards. Oh yeah, did I mention that this tablet doesn’t have a physical keyboard?
Sure, the tablet has a 1.6GHz Intel Atom N270 CPU and 1024 x 600 pixel screen. But it takes more than that to make a device a netbook.
Don’t get me wrong. The Netbook Navigator looks like a great little machine. It packs 2GB of RAM, supports 802.11b/g WiFi and Bluetooth. It has 3 USB ports, a MiniSD card slot, SIM card slot and it even comes with an optional car charger. It’s also available with a 64GB or 128GB SSD if you’re willing to pay a higher price. The tablet measures 10″ x 6.6″ x 0.8″ and weighs just 2 pounds. On the down side, it has a 2200mAh battery that’s good for just 3 to 4 hours. Oh yeah, and it’s really expensive.
You can find more details at the Netbook Navigator web site. The 8.9 inch model is scheduled to ship in late February. The company also plans to release a 7 inch version.
Update: I’ve just heard from the folks at Netbook Navigator that they didn’t appreciate me sharing the pricing (which you do have to register in order to see, but which you can automatically see once you register for an account). The company does, however, plan to offer a base model for about $799 with less storage, RAM, and no 3G once production ramps up later this year.