Anything under 12" qualifies for the name mini notebook because the low limit for subnotebooks usually is pointed out to be 13". Once you go for a netbook you'll have to realise that these machines are often a compromise on raw computing power. To put it this way, you get something slightly different than ordinary laptop parts, these elements are specifically made for netbooks with power consumption in mind.
The heaviest models go as high as 3-3.5 pounds or 1.5 kgs if you like to calculate in SI.

Why choose mini notebook computers?

The main selling point for these little things usually is their limited size and that they don't really go over 3.5 pounds so you probably won't even notice if you have them with you in your backpack or not. Just to give you an idea what 3.5 pounds translate to in real life: it is what an average person can hold in his or her hand and type on it with the other hand without any discomfort.
These computers are usually as big as 2x6x10 inches, and that is something I would call small. In other words: mini. To further shade the picture, this is something you can stretch your palm across in width and this fact gives them an unique delicate feeling. I wouldn't say that they are too small, but you will always have to have one thing in mind, these notebooks are not for serious multitasking. If you had that expection, please do yourself a favour and don't depend on a mini. Bigger models, usually in the 12" size, have a 1280x800 resolution, but finer resolution is not always the better. You can easily cross the line where pixels are so mall you can't read normal size text on the screen. With the battery time of these models you are in for a long work day anyway, so please, try it out before buying. At the time when I write this article 10" netbooks enjoy major popularity. Some have 1024 x 600 screens, some come with 1024 x 576. Go for the bigger in this case, you will thank yourself that you have.

With manufacturers installing 6 and 9 cells batteries, battery life finally poses no obstacle in the way of long work day, 4-6 hours on one charge is a common sight. I use an Asus 1005HA-M to type this article and it has enough juice in its battery to keep on running while I watch two movies back to back and there is still some more time to surf the net.

Ah, movies. You will very much be able to watch movies on these computers, screen resolution allows for standard definition videos to be played without a hitch. This particular Asus model comes with a 160 gb HDD and in all honesty, it is enough to keep all the music, movies and books I posess. Something for less than $400 this is truly remarkable.

Basic Hardware Setup

I have been using this computer as a main workstation for a few months now, and I have to say that its N270 cpu, and 1gb ram is not something to be ashamed of.
It is a common mistake to think that these mini notebook computers are a pain to work with, as there is nothing to stop you if you decide to watch videos on youtube, churn out a few documents, make a spreadsheet or just wind down after a long day playing flash games. The default 1gb memory seems to be the culprit at putting serious barrier at playing demanding games. 2Gb would be nice, though I would still not play farcry 2 on it, remember it comes with integrated Intel videocard. I like this laptop so much that I'm going to keep it even if I get another toy to do the serious work on.

Major Players on the Field

Asus has been producing netbooks for years now and they were the company to coin the term 'netbook'. They know they what to do so even if choosing to buy something else, you are still going to have to check out their products as well.MSI shouldn't be ashamed either, their wind series put something on the table, but I wouldn't stop here en route to Lenovo. They've been focusing on quality for a few years now, so it's not an option to skip their products. In my personal opinion you should give Lenovo s12 with Nvidia Ion chipset a spin if you ever get a chance, it is supposed to come with 12" screen, HDMI output, and enough horsepower to decipher 1080p full HD video.

Ending Thoughts

If you don't like being tied to your desk at home, or just simply love to be free of wire including power cable, you should indeed consider buying one of these mini notebooks I have hard time describing how easy and limitless it feels to have one of these in one hand and a mug of coffee in the other while having some fresh air in your backyard.

For those of the younger generation facebook and twitter could be a big seller with these cuties, you are in no way limited with a mini when browsing and using these services.

However if you can't spend a day without watching a HD video on youtube, or optical drive is an absolute must, if you play demanding games or your work requires you to manipulate videos you probably shouldn't have one as main computer.