April 16, 2009, 7:33 am
Netbooks and other small form-factor computing devices are growing in popularity. These low-budget products are looking increasingly relevant in the current economy and are attracting consumers who are looking for better value and mobility. This trend offers a unique chance for the open source Linux platform–which is well-suited for netbooks and doesn’t add any licensing costs–to gain some much-needed traction.
Vista is too demanding for netbook hardware, so Microsoft has chosen to extend the lifespan of Windows XP in order to stave off broader Linux use on low-end mobile hardware. This provides a window of opportunity for Linux to get a meaningful foothold in the market–an achievement that has perpetually eluded the free operating system–while Microsoft is prepping Windows 7, which is said to be more netbook-friendly than Vista.