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Asus Eee PC 1015PEM

The last ride of the netbook?

Keep taking the tablets

As I say, all good stuff, and the battery life is decent: just shy of five hours in Reg Hardware's netbook-centric video playback test. Asus claims up to 13 hours, but that's running a more modest workload than looping video. But for all the new, more efficient CPU, it's only an average score.

Incidentally, the 1015PEM's screen is not a bright display, even on max, and that's not helped by the inclusing of an anti-glare screen, though that has other benefits of course, not least no reflections.

Asus Eee PC 1015PEM

For once, a non-glossy display

No, the trouble is, it's all just more of the same. Say what you like about Apple, but you have to agree that its Macbook Air is bloody thin for a notebook. And it's thick, bulky jobs like the Asus that make is so. The 1015PEM's lid alone is 9mm thick - barely less than an iPad. With base, the 1015PEM is a very chubby 37mm.

Now, some of that is battery - hence the 13-hour eke-it-out runtime. But you'll get that out of a good tablet that's a fraction of the thickness, has more screen area and can handle just the same kinds of tasks. No keyboard, of course, but that can't account for why the Asus - and other netbooks, to be fair - are so darn thicker.

Verdict

Asus' Eee PC 1015PEM packs in as much new technology as you'd expect a netbook to offer, but the result is underwhelming. There's no real improvement in performance over previous generations, though the battery life is better. But netbooks like these are going to have to become considerably more lithe if they're not to be quickly out-evolved by tablets. ®

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Asus Eee PC 1015PEM

Asus Eee PC 1015PEM

The latest netbook tech and a big battery life make for a bloated netbook.
Price: £349 RRP