A few days ago, I had blogged about the netbook revolution, but at the time I didn't have data. Amazon has a page of the bestselling laptops, which is updated hourly. At 4:30 PM IST on 13th February, it shows:
|1.||ASUS Eee PC 1000HE||XP Netbook|
|2.||ASUS Eee PC 1000HA||XP Netbook|
|3.||Acer Aspire One AOD150-1165||XP Netbook|
|4.||ASUS Eee PC 1000HE||XP Netbook|
|5.||Acer Aspire One AOA150-1126||XP Netbook|
|6.||ASUS Eee PC 900HA||XP Netbook|
|7.||Acer Aspire One AOA150-1672||XP Netbook|
|8.||Samsung NC10-14GB||XP Netbook|
|9.||ASUS Eee PC 1000HA||XP Netbook|
|10.||Acer Aspire One AOA150-1359||XP Netbook|
|11.||MSI Wind U100-432US||XP Netbook|
|12.||Apple MacBook MB466LL/A||Unix notebook|
|13.||Acer Aspire One AOA150-1784||XP Netbook|
|14.||Apple MacBook MB881LL/A||Unix notebook|
|15.||Toshiba Satellite A305-S6908||Vista notebook|
|16.||Samsung NC10-14GW||XP Netbook|
|17.||Acer Aspire One AOA150-1447||XP Netbook|
|19.||Apple MacBook Pro MB134LL/A||Unix notebook|
|20.||ASUS Eee PC 904HA||XP Netbook|
This data shows quite an upheaval, in many dimensions.
- Fat notebooks vs. netbooks
- Suppose we caricature these machines as netbooks vs. `fat' notebooks. The picture here is that of the top 20 machines, there are four fat notebooks and 16 netbooks. Of these four, three are Apple and one is a Toshiba running Vista.
- This is clearly not going well for Microsoft. Windows XP was launched in 2001. Vista was launched in 2006. And today, in early 2009, the above data shows that the biggest selling notebooks in the world are ignoring Vista. The highest ranked machine that's using Vista is at rank 15 above, and this is the only one of the top 20 which is using Vista.
- Apple has three titles in these twenty hits, starting with #12. It is really quite an astonishing performance. Unix has never seen such mass-scale consumer adoption before. Apple's #12 title is at $1000. If they did a netbook at $500 it'd likely hit number 1. If they try that, the world of notebook computers will shape up as Apple versus Asus.
- Linux and netbooks go very well together. Part of what is going on is what was pointed out by Naman in a comment on this blog post: Windows XP is a design frozen in 2006, while Linux is moving forward today and particularly in response to the unique engineering tradeoffs found on netbooks. Yet, as of today, customers are clearly favouring XP netbooks: this suggests that while they are able to dual-boot their machines with Linux, they are not yet ready to close the option of running Windows XP. The above data is one snapshot, and the picture fluctuates. E.g. I just looked and Linux netbooks were at #24, #36 and #49.
- Hardware vendors
- The top ten products are all Asus, Acer or Samsung. Traditional notebook vendors like Lenovo, HP or Dell are nowhere to be seen.