The Asus Eee PC 1005HA netbook has a lot going for it. It’s good looking, comfortable to use and the 6 cell battery version boasts a battery life of up to 8 hours.
The netbook market at the moment is swamped by netbook manufacturers trying to claim the middle ground of the netbook market by releasing cheap netbooks with 10.1 inch screens, with 1Gb of RAM and a 160Gb of hard drive space. The only place where manufacturers are pushing boundaries in this segment of the netbook market are on the ergonomics of the keyboard, battery life and case design. Asus have tackled all three of these areas with the 1005HA.
Firstly Asus have wisely used the full width of the case for the keyboard. This makes typing quicker and more comfortable for long periods. Touch-typers will love this keyboard. Underneath the keyboard is an innovative touchpad. The pad allows you to control scolling down long web pages just by dragging two fingers down the interface. It also allows pinch movements to zoom in and out of websites – much as you can with modern smartphones like the iPhone.
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The 1005HA comes with 3 different types of battery – each with different usage times – so you’d best check what you’re getting before you buy. On the Asus website they quote the following battery life:
3-Cell 23Wh Li-ion Battery : 4 hours battery life
6-Cell 48Wh Li-ion Battery: 8.5 hours battery life
6-Cell 63Wh Li-ion Battery : 10.5 hours battery life
As you can see from this page. They test battery life with the screen brightness turned down and Wi-Fi off, so you can knock a couple of hours off these headline figures, but you’ll still get a decent chunk of use out of this netbook before the battery goes. We’d recommend the 6 cell version although you’ll be paying a bit more and it adds a few grams to the overall weight of the netbook.
The battery is removable, so even if you can only find a 3 cell battery version, you can always buy a 6 cell battery from Amazon later and easily slap it in – then you’ll have a backup battery.
Asus realise that netbooks are meant to be taken out and about and to bastardise a Nick Cage line in Leaving Las Vegas “This is a netbook! And for me it’s a symbol of my individuality, and my belief… in personal freedom”. They need to look good and the Asus 1005HA fits the bill. It’s not as sleek and sexy has it’s sister the 1008HA but it has the same seashell inspired curved case, it’s very very shiny and it comes in white, black, pin and blue. As an aside pink netbooks tend to be cheaper. We wonder why…
We like this netbook a lot. It stands out from the crowd with its long battery life and clamshell design. We’d gladly sacrifice the size and weight to have a netbook that just keeps on working when we’re on the road. We love that fact that we can just hook this baby up via bluetooth to our mobile and tap away in the park over the 3G netbook.
Official website: http://eeepc.asus.com/global/product1005ha.html