The netbook market is getting hit hard right now thanks to more people buying tablets and the drop in price on many real notebooks that offer more power than a netbook can muster. The decline in netbook shipments has been enough to make some changes in the rankings of the largest computer shippers in the world.
Dell was helped by the iPad when Acer's sales of netbooks plummeted on the popularity of the iPad. Companies that made big money in the netbook market aren’t willing to walk away though and you can bet new products are on the way that will try to lure shoppers back to a netbook with a physical keyboard.
One of these machines will be a new netbook that is set to launch in June for $200 to $250. That price tag will certainly be appealing to shoppers since it is several hundred dollars less than the iPad. The machine will be made in cooperation with Intel. DigiTimes cites sources that claim the new Asus netbook will run Android 3.0 or chrome OS in order to hit the low price point. Android 3.0 is the touch optimized OS for tablets form Google.
I wonder if it would make much sense to put Android 3.0 into a netbook that lacks touch capability. I think that Android would be more appealing to buyers and it would let the user get onto the Android Market for games that can be played without a touchscreen.
Asus is also said to be working on a mid-range and high-end notebook model with a price tag in the $499 range with cloud computing services and fashionable designs. The hardware that the cheap Android notebooks will run is unannounced. To reach that price I would expect single core Atom processors inside.