We don't know what it is, but there's just something a bit too "netbook" about Samsung's netbooks. We took a look at the new N210, NB30 and N150
models that Samsung is showing here at CES, and while there's nothing precisely wrong with any of them, they just felt a little uninspired. Like almost everybody these days, Samsung has moved to chiclet keys, which would be alright if they were as quality as previous generations of Sammy's netbook keyboards, but they just felt a little plastic and shallow. At least the NB30 has an excuse, with its water-resistant keyboard tray, and to the lineup's credit, there was very little flex to any of the keyboards -- a common netbook problem. The durable, ridged plastic that encases the NB30 is also pretty nice, but nothing to make our heart aflutter. We spied the NB150 sporting a rather unique pink shell and accents, but apparently the final model will come in a rather more tame black. Interestingly, the most inspired netbook in Samsung's lineup was the N127 (pictured), which they aren't even planning on bringing to market (yet). The unit runs Moblin
at a lightning fast pace, has the old school "good" Samsung keyboard, and if it came to retail would likely undercut its Windows brethren by a nice margin. We're not sure if Moblin is ready for the mass market, and obviously Samsung isn't either, but it would be a fun experiment from our perspective. After all, if you're going to bother building three formulaic netbooks, what's the harm in cutting a little loose on the fourth?
Samsung's new netbook line goes hands-on, Moblin makes a cameo
See all photos