Feeds
75%
Acer Aspire One D250 with Android

Acer Aspire One D250 with Android

The first netbook with Google's OS

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

Android here does have some nice touches, and it's largely a good looking UI. We mentioned the ease of setting up Email, and both Wi-Fi and 3G are eminently usable for wireless internet connectivity. The integrated Huawei 3G modem is unlocked, so stick a Sim in the slot under the battery and you're away. You can manage the modem in Android and in Windows.

But it's the little things that irritate. Some 14 wallpapers are included, but only one is sized to fill the D250's 1024 x 600 screen. You can add email accounts easily enough, but you can't delete them. Clicking icons in the menu bar calls up the Notifications screen, it doesn't take you to the appropriate Settings panel. You can't create a Google account in Android if you didn't do so during the set-up process. It's sluggish, not zipping along as merrily as you'd expect a pared-down Linux distro to.

Acer Aspire One D250

Nice netbook - but go for the six-cell battery

We should mention the hardware before we go. We liked the D250 when we reviewed it as a standalone Windows XP netbook and our opinion hasn't changed. We re-ran PCMark05 and got exactly the numbers we expected for this D250's 1.6GHz Atom N270 CPU - the previous one had a 1.66GHz N280 in it.

Hard drive, memory and 3G modem are easily accessible through hatches in the D250's base. The glossy screen is nice and bright. The keyboard isn't bad and while the touchpad is a bit on the small side, that's par for the netbook course. Only the battery lets it down - 2200mAh is too small for a device that'll be used out and about - but at least there's a 4400mAh option.

Acer should either release a netbook that uses Android as the primary OS, just as it used Linpus for the first Aspire One. We liked Linpus - it wasn't a geek's OS, but it did the job for everyone else, keeping the machine simple and consumer-friendly. Android could do the same but at scope of third-party apps to increase the machine's functionality.

Verdict

We were hoping for so much more. Android on phones is a powerful, highly customisable OS with a growing selection of third-party apps. On Acer's dual-OS Aspire One D250, it's just a basic front-end for quick web, and music and photo media access. We knew from that start that's what it was there for, but did they have to limit it quite so much?

This is not, and probably never will be, a true Android netbook. The OS here isn't on a par with Windows, in terms of functionality or role. We like the hardware - the D250 is a nice netbook - but this version really doesn't improve on the basic, cheaper model. ®

More Netbook Reviews...


Fujitsu
M2010

Packard Bell
dot m/a

Dell
Latitude
2100

Samsung
N110

The essential guide to IT transformation

75%
Acer Aspire One D250 with Android

Acer Aspire One D250 with Android

This is a nice netbook, and having a quick-boot alternative to Windows is nice to have. But it's far from essential and neither is it a full OS. The true Android netbook, it ain't.
Price: £250 (Windows 7) £280 (Windows XP, 3G) RRP

More from The Register

next story
Apple takes blade to 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
Shaves price, not screen on mid-2014 model
Top Gun display for your CAR: Heads-up fighter pilot tech
Sadly Navdy kit doesn't include Sidewinder missile to blast traffic
iPhone 6 flip tip slips in Aussie's clip: Apple's 'reversible USB' leaks
New plug not compatible with official Type-C, according to fresh rumors
FEAST YOUR EYES: Samsung's Galaxy Alpha has an 'entirely new appearance'
Wow, it looks like nothing else on the market, for sure
YES YES YES! Apple patents mousy, pressure-sensing iVibrator
Fanbois prepare to experience the great Cupertin-O
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
TV transport tech, part 1: From server to sofa at the touch of a button
You won't believe how much goes into today's telly tech
Things are looking up in Flappy Bird sequel
'Swing Copters' offers the same gameplay but in a different direction
NVIDIA claims first 64-bit ARMv8 SoC for Androids
Mile-High 'Denver' Tegra K1 successor said to rival PC performance
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.