Netbooks – Who’s Using Them?


Netbooks – those ultra small portable PCs – are they a niche product, a passing fad or an up and coming product just in its infancy? PC Pitstop analyzed the prevalence of netbooks that ran our on-line diagnostic scans during Q4 2008 and Q1 2009. For the purpose of our analysis, we looked at processor descriptions as well as the display size for portables. For the most part, we found that the netbooks usually contained the Intel® Atomâ„¢ processor. We also set a filter for portable display size of less than 11 inches for the purpose of our analysis.

We also analyzed the prevalence by PC brand for the netbooks. Acer Aspire showed a commanding lead over second place ASUS Eee PC. Netbook users also revealed that they are generally satisfied with their small form factor PCs.

Netbooks – Overall Prevalence

The analysis revealed, that overall, netbooks represent a relatively insignificant percent of the PCs in use today (approximately 1%). Overall prevalence of netbooks was around 0.3% in October 2008 and has steadily grown to approximately 1.1% of total PCs in March of 2009.

NetBook Prevalence

PC Pitstop – Netbook Prevalence by Worldwide Region

Acceptance of the small sized portables appeared to be similar across world-wide regions. US and Europe showed the strongest acceptance with Australia trailing the regions.


PC Pitstop – Netbook Prevalence by Age Groups

When we took a look at the prevalence of PC form factors by major generation age groups, it was interesting (but maybe not surprising) that older folks were less likely to use portables or netbooks. The acceptance of portables and netbooks appear as a stair-step increment with each subsequent generation.


PC Pitstop – Netbook Usage by Gender

Considering the small form factor of the netbooks, it was a little surprising that male’s netbook usage showed a slight increase when compared to the full sized portable group.


PC Pitstop – Netbook Prevalence by Home and Business

Unsurprisingly, netbooks are primarily used for personal purposes. Undoubtedly as the name implies, netbooks are popular for accessing the internet for checking emails and web browsing.


PC Pitstop – Netbook Model Popularity and User Satisfaction

PC Pitstop also took a look at what brands of netbooks were most popular. At the point of our analysis, the Acer Aspire appears to be the undisputed king in the netbook arena with an impressive 45% of the market. ASUS Eee PC came in second with approximately 18%.

Based on user’s self reported satisfaction ratings, netbook users are generally satisfied with their scaled down portables. Generally, the percentage of satisified users were in the mid to high 90’s.


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