I can normally see where the extra money goes when paying through the eyeballs for a Sony Vaio but I can’t say it was all too obvious when I got my hands on the Sony Vaio Mini W. It looks and feels just like pretty much any netbook out there and, in fact, there are much slinkier ones in the shape of the Acer Aspire One for example. Take a look and see what I mean.
At approcimately £400 that’s quite a lot more than any other netbook and the only thing it really has going for it, on first inspection, is the keyboard. It’s still pretty small but Sony has somehow managed to keep their isolated keys design while making it easy enough to type on. I’m not saying I’d want to write a book on the thing but it’ll drive you a lot less crazy than a lot of the others out there.
I’d need some up close and personal time with the thing to really see how much I’d pay for it but, until then, I’m not going to be losing any sleep. Oh, and brown was the other colour I was after.
It’s got a 1.66GHz Intel Atom N280 CPU, a 10.1-inch screen, 1GB of RAM, runs Windows XP and weighs just 1.19kg. Now that sounds to me like Sony has decided to get with the program and bring out a netbook.
The Vaio Mini W-Series looks typically smooth with an WXGA LED screen, spaced keyboard, dimpled palm rest and free carry case to match your choice of white, pink or dark brown.
On the inside, there’s DDR2 RAM running at 533MHz, WLAN 802.11b/g/Draft-N, Bluetooth and 160GB of HDD. Surprised not to see an SSD but I’ve a feeling that might send the price a little high for a netbook.
It measures 179.6 mm x 267.8 x 32.4 and it’s out from August. Rather late to be releasing something like this when every TomTom, Dixons, and Harrods already has a netbook but there’s clearly a market here that Sony recognises. I’ll be interested to see if it offers anything that the others already don’t, apart from just the Vaio name.
Sony have launched the latest in their popular Vaio range this afternoon, with the P Series ‘Lifestyle PC’ AKA pretty coloured laptops. There’s built-in GPS, an 8-inch LCD screen, integrated LAN and the bility to masquerade as a business envelope in terms of size.