Dell has been working on a Netbook-style laptop for a long time and has now come out with a small, low-power, inexpensive system called the Mini 9 that runs on a four-cell li-Ion battery.
The Mini 9 uses Intel's Atom CPU and features a lot of customisation options ever seen in a Netbook before.
The laptop's features include 1GB of RAM, a 16GB solid-state hard drive (SSD). It comes pre-loaded with Windows XP operating system. This configuration of the Mini 9 is priced at $499, though cheaper versions with a smaller 4 or 8GB and 512 RAM and an Ubuntu Linux OS can be had for as low as $349.
The Mini 9 is slightly thinner, at about 1.25 inches, tapering slightly toward the front. It is avaliable with a glossy black finish and is also available in white and red colour.
It has three USB ports, headphone and mic jacks, a VGA out, SD card slot, and an Ethernet jack. The opening lid is an 8.9-inch 1,024x600 screen which has an inbuilt webcam above and two small speaker grilles below.
The challenge for any Netbook is to squeeze as much keyboard space as possible into a very tiny space. The Dell letter keys are larger in comparison to some other mini laptops but certain keys such as 'tab', 'caps lock' are reduced to small slivers. In addition, the entire F-key row has been removed. F1 through F10 are now alternate keys in the the A-L row.