We haven't had a netbook on review for quite a while now, and it was about time to change this. It's springtime, open season for netbooks, notebooks and various other gadgets for the geek on the go. We'll start off with Lenovo's IdeaPad S10e, your regular run of the mill netbook with a twist.
As you might have guessed, we're looking at an Atom N270/945GSE combo, 10.1-inch screen and a 160GB hard drive (yawn). However, Lenovo spiced up the S10e with a tiny 4GB SSD system drive, which is used in tandem with the HDD. MSI went for a similar concept with its pricey Wind U115 hybrid, and stuck an 8GB SSD next to the HDD. We will take a look at the pros and cons of this approach later, in our review.
Speaking of pros and cons, a look at some price lists reveals a definite pro for the S10e. It is currently one of the cheapest 10-inch netbooks on the market, and that's not easy in this cutthroat market segment. Prices start at as little as €219 for a Linux flavored S10e, but it only ships with 4GB of solid state storage, expandable via SD cards. A SKU quite similar to our sample, with XP and SSD/HDD combo, costs €369 with a 6-cell battery, which is still pretty good value.
We like the design, the choice of materials is also pretty good, as is build quality. The only thing we're not thrilled about is the glossy screen, but at least it's not as reflective as some screens we had the displeasure of using over the years.
You can expect the full review next week, but so far the S10e gets a mild thumbs up. It's well priced, it looks nice and offers an interesting storage concept, which we'll surely take a close look at during the review.