It's hard to maintain excitement about Netbooks lately, with all the tablet and ultraportable developments of the last few months. That's not stopping manufacturers from trying to offer some valuable solutions. HP has announced the December release of the Mini 1103, a business-targeted Netbook for $299.
Based on the specs, there's nothing to get excited about: a 10-inch screen at 1,024x600-pixel resolution, single-core Intel Atom N455 CPU, 2GB of RAM, 160GB hard drive, and Windows 7 Starter in the entry configuration. Optional 3G mobile broadband from AT&T, Sprint, or Verizon is also available. The price, however, might be the biggest advantage. $299 is what we're used to seeing from low-end consumer Netbooks, and it's considerably less expensive than the fancier HP Mini 5103 we recently reviewed. Would some small business owners prefer picking up one of these and skipping more expensive iPads and tablets? At $299, it doesn't seem like such a bad idea.