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Ultra first impressions of the Vodafone Netbook

So after being the first to purchase one at the Vodafone Marylebone store, I have the device home. I’m typing this post on it.

The glorious Vodafone Netbook.

I went for the 25 pounds per month option giving me 1GB of data per month. I figured I could always upgrade if necessary.

Here, then, are some initial thoughts:

  • The keyboard is small. Remember the device is only, what, 9 inches across. Dell have had to move the keys around so they fit. At a push, this keyboard is usable for long periods, especially once you get used to it. I’ve made about 6 typos so far – most due to the placement of the enter key.
  • You’ve got an 8GB solid state hard disk on board… but only 3.2GB of usable free space. Windows itself takes up 1.54 GB. I imagine you can remove the various Dell and Drivers folders if the mood takes you — and reclaim a lot more space.
  • I like the partnership with box.net. There’s a little icon for a 2GB free (‘lite’) box.net account. I made take them up on that.
  • The Vodafone Connect stuff is right there on the menu. Fire it up and hit connect and you’re done. Very, very smart. I found the speed really good.
  • The keyboard is satisfying.
  • The touchpad is rather swish. I like how it feels and works.
  • It’s pretty fast. It’s not quite the 8 processor Apple Workstation I’m used to but it works nicely with Windows XP and a wee bit of patience.
  • Out of the box there was 78% battery. I can’t comment yet on battery length yet.

More soon.

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

6 replies on “Ultra first impressions of the Vodafone Netbook”

Hey, this is Sean over at Box.net. I'm glad you like what you see so far in the new Dell netbook. I hope you take advantage of Box's free 2 GB of online storage. I think you'll like what you see in terms of the sharing and collaboration tools in our service, as well as the broad range of web-based applications in which you'll be able to access files stored on Box.net directly. Let us know if you have any questions!

The pricing is disappointing – even assuming the GSM-enabled version of the Dell has the same ~£50 premium as other netbooks you could buy it direct from Dell (or something similar from a competitor) plus an 18 month data contract on Vodafone with a free USB stick, ditch the stick and triple (3GB) your data allowance for the same TCO and a contract that end 6 months earlier.

I agree normobs will love the simplicity, but £20pm is a better price IMO.

Don't even get me started on how much cheaper Three would be…

The pricing is disappointing – even assuming the GSM-enabled version of the Dell has the same ~£50 premium as other netbooks you could buy it direct from Dell (or something similar from a competitor) plus an 18 month data contract on Vodafone with a free USB stick, ditch the stick and triple (3GB) your data allowance for the same TCO and a contract that end 6 months earlier.

I agree normobs will love the simplicity, but £20pm is a better price IMO.

Don't even get me started on how much cheaper Three would be…

The pricing is disappointing – even assuming the GSM-enabled version of the Dell has the same ~£50 premium as other netbooks you could buy it direct from Dell (or something similar from a competitor) plus an 18 month data contract on Vodafone with a free USB stick, ditch the stick and triple (3GB) your data allowance for the same TCO and a contract that end 6 months earlier.

I agree normobs will love the simplicity, but £20pm is a better price IMO.

Don't even get me started on how much cheaper Three would be…

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