Netbooks are a category of small, lightweight, legacy-free, and inexpensive laptop computers. At their inception in late 2007 as smaller notebooks optimized for low weight and low cost netbooks omitted certain features (e.g., the optical drive), featured smaller screens and keyboards, and offered reduced computing power when compared to a full-sized laptop. Over the course of their evolution, netbooks have ranged in size from below 5' screen diagonal to 12'. A typical weight is 1 kg (2.2 pounds). Often significantly less expensive than other laptops, by mid-2009, some wireless data carriers began to offer netbooks to users 'free of charge', with an extended service contract purchase. In the short period since their appearance, netbooks grew in size and features, and converged with smaller, lighter laptops and subnotebooks.
Contributions by 842U, Onnozele, and Hm2k.