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Gadget of the Week - HP’s Mini 1000 Mi



2009 has been labeled the year of the netbook by techies and gadget enthusiasts. These light-weight, stripped-down notebooks are easy to carry and easier to use. Because they do without a lot of the sophisticated software and business applications that are found on larger, more expensive notebooks and PCs, netbooks have been referred to as “Mom-books” – ideal for e-mail, web-browsing, and social media access on-the-go.

If you’ve been thinking about a new notebook and have been wondering if a netbook could be the right option, then you should seriously consider HP’s Mini 1000 Mi, a clear leader in the class and great value at under $300 for the basic model.

The Mini 1000 series has been around for a while. This latest edition abandons the Windows XP platform for HP’s own version of Ubuntu called Mi (Mobile internet). (Ubuntu is a community-developed open source operating system.) For the geeks, the Mini 1000 Mi comes with a 1.6 GHz Intel Atom processor, up to 2GB of RAM, and a range of 8 – 60GB hard drive options.

The comfort and functionality of the Mini 1000 is outstanding. The base model has an 8.9-inch widescreen or you can upgrade to a gorgeous 10.1-inch flush glass display. Following a recent trend for netbooks, the Mini 1000 comes with an almost full-size keyboard. There’s also a 1.3-megapixel webcam, two USB ports, an Ethernet port, Bluetooth, and a 2-in-1 SD/MMC card reader.

The homepage for the Mi is divided into three columns: Mail, Web, and Music/Photos. E-mail is configured using Thunderbird, while Web browsing is taken care of by Firefox. The IM client is Pidgin, which handles all the popular protocols like AIM, MSN, ICQ and so on. Skype 2 also comes pre-loaded and works well with the built-in webcam. Open Office handles all document processing and includes Word Processor, Spreadsheet, Presentations and Drawing. Adobe Reader 8 also comes installed.

The Mini 1000 is stylishly designed and the whole thing weighs-in at only 2.25 lb. The compact specs – 10.3 x 6.56 x 0.99 inches – ensure that the Mi will fit into just about any bag and even some purses. It’s the perfect size for someone who’s always on the go, but needs something more than just a smartphone to stay connected.

The Mini 1000 Mi starts at $279.99 but we recommend spending a little extra to get the best value. A 10.1-inch unit with 2GB of RAM will come fully-equipped for around $525.



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