Acer Aspire One D250 with Android
The first netbook with Google's OS
Review Installing a second operating system on a PC is nothing new. Plenty of manufacturers have done so before, building a slimline Linux distro into their machines to provide a much more rapid start-up than Windows can manage: full access to the internet within seconds of pressing on power key.
Acer's Aspire with Android: fast start for Google, slower boot to Microsoft
What sets Acer apart is its choice of secondary OS: Google's Android, an operating system usually found in smartphones, but here pressed into service the way Asus has used SplashTop, Sony has used XMB and Dell has used Latitude On.
All of these services play second fiddle to Windows, and Acer's Android offering is no different. Right from the outset, Android is junior partner to the Microsoft OS. Switch the machine on - it's an Aspire One 10in D250 netbook, almost exactly like the one we reviewed here - and alongside the regular invitation to enter the Bios setup screen by pressing F2, you have the chance "to enter Windows OS" by pressing F9.
You have to be quick, though. If you're too slow, or you keep your mitts off the keyboard, the familiar Google 'droid appears, cheekily peering up at you from the bottom right corner of the screen. Within seconds - 18.9, to be precise - you're facing the Android UI.
That start up speed is nice - Windows XP took 54s, from pressing the power key to the last of the System Tray icons being loaded - though it's not really what we'd call instant on. But we're less keen on what it brings you. This incarnation of Android - provided by Bios maker InSyde - is disappointingly basic.
The D250's Android UI is largely like the smartphone interface
If you've tried an Android phone, the UI will be familiar: the analogue clock, the notification bar up top and the desktop space that's larger than the screen. Here you click and drag to the two other areas - there are three in a row - rather than swiping with your finger. This is one netbook that really could do with a touchscreen.
"Why would Android have NTFS support?" Well, hmm... maybe because Linux has had NTFS support since 3 days before forever. Kind of ridiculous that a free, open-source module couldn't come pre-installed to support this. And what if you want to plug in a USB hard drive formatted with NTFS? Just stupid. If I read the article right, you can access the Linux partition from Windows and Windows has always needed an add-on to access EXT2 or 3 partitions, so this is even more inexcusable.
All in all, sounds like a slapdash effort at best.
@AC @When will they listen
Thanks for the pointer to Novatech, great hardware and everything can be bought without any OS pre-installed: I think that's where I'll be shopping next.
I really like the Acer Aspire One 10" with 6 cell 5800mh battery I have. Unfortunately the promised 6cell Linux version of the netbook never quite arrived so I ended up buying the XP version. (I loaded Fedora on it and have been quite happy with its performance.) Especially the 7.5 hr battery life.
For me to get another Acer netbook it would have to provide 8+ hr battery life, a vertical display resolution higher than 600, and Linux instead of some version of Windows would definitely help tip the scales toward upgrading... (The only reason I got the last one with XP is reports that Microsoft hand reduced OEM cost to as low as $5 each in an attempt to "win" the market back from Linux.)
Why the "justice department" does not prevent the Microsoft monopoly from "rice gouging" or keep Intel/Microsoft from strong-arming vendors into providing only low-RAM, low resolution display versions of netbook is also disturbing...
What can I say? - We in the US have the best government that money can buy... (Too bad only some of us seem to believe our representation should not be for sale...)
Acer Aspire One D250 with Android
As a Tmobile G1 user. i know i can INSTALL A FILE MANAGER AND use it to BROWSE the the phone SD CARD plus u can create differents PARTITIONS on the SD card.i never had a chance to play with ANDROID in the netbook/desktop computer yeaht,because the OS is not ready yeaht to be downloaded, BUT I`M 100% SURE that if u install the FILE MANAGER u`ll be able to SEE and ACCESS THE ROOT OF THE C: DRIVE. also I`m SURE u can PLAY VIDEO with ANDROID.
U GUYS SHOULD HAVE LOOKED AT THE ANDROID MARKET FOR ANY ADDITIONAL APPS.
To quote Andy directly : "? I don't want one of these machines, or any fecking desktop, laptop etc, with Windows on it".
Sounds like he was talking about all kinds of boxes (not just netbooks, eh?), and you can buy all kinds of boxes including netbooks without Windows either white label or DIY.
Do try to keep up, and stop staring at goats...you make them nervous...