Smartbooks will be making some crazy gains by 2015, according to ABI Research. But what the heck is a smartbook?
ABI Research analyst Jeff Orr has an answer that does a good job of distinguishing smartbooks from netbooks:
“As ABI Research defines it, a smartbook is a low-powered device running a mobile operating system that is always connected, either via Wi-Fi or (more often) using cellular or mobile broadband. Smartbooks can take many different shapes. They are a subset of MIDs (mobile Internet devices) and netbooks, and address the same potential users, usage, pricing, and market needs. The difference is that they don’t use x86 processors.”
ABI’s new research study claims that 163 million smartbooks will ship in 2015. It’s a pretty long bet, but considering that the first smartbooks appeared in 2008, it will be an ambitious target for manufacturers to hit.
If vendors bring smartbook prices below $200, the gains could be even greater.