There's no shortage of choice if you're in the market for a netbook at the moment, and HANNspree has recently extended this further with the introduction of its Hannsbook SN10E24.
Available in a choice of three colours - pearl black, burgundy red or pearl white, it's a typically sized and typically specced offering that boasts a 10.1-inch (1024 x 600) display, Intel Atom N450 CPU, integrated graphics, 1GB of memory and a 160GB hard drive.
It feels very solidly designed and is relatively light at 1.3kg. The full-sized 84-key keyboard takes a bit of getting used to due to the cramped space that is synonymous with netbooks, though the keys are nicely responsive, as is the rather small trackpad and mouse selection buttons.
Wi-Fi b/g/n and Bluetooth are built in along with a webcam and stereo speakers. A 3-in-1 multi-card reader accompanies D-Sub out, 3x USB 2.0 ports and the usual audio connectivity and these are well oriented along the sides of the enclosure for easy access in tight spaces. Also supplied in the box are a soft leather carry bag and all the software required for system maintenance.
Despite being impressively compact and reasonably specced, it would be a stretch to expect the SN10E24 to venture into gaming or even HD video territory. During our tests it struggled with anything more demanding than standard definition resolutions, so while the stereo speakers do a decent job considering their size, media use will be limited for most.
Having said that, the display is very capable and recreates clean, accurate colours with impressive clarity even in sunny and brightly lit environments. We were also quite pleased with the battery life, which exceeded the quoted 6 hours during our high-drain tests so with more typical use it's certainly capable of lasting a good distance between charges.
Though it doesn't bring anything particularly inspiring to the table, the SN10E24's lack of ambition is justified somewhat by its low price. Despite competing on a level field with many rivals in the netbook market in terms of size and specifications, Hanns' model undercuts most by coming in at just £259. This, combined with a solid and attractive design, makes it a good choice for the budget conscious.
The Hannsbook SN10E24 doesn't push any boundaries in terms of performance and specification, so is a true “netbook” in terms of its rather limited use. It succeeds in this market by ticking all of the most important boxes in terms of design and connectivity however, and being reasonably priced is still a worthy rival to more established brands.