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I Told You So: MID Development Delayed By Netbooks



me I don’t want to be, but I’m on the precipice of saying I told you so. When news of Moblin V2 popped out yesterday there was a slight but important twist in expectations. The Alpha release is ““initially targeted at Netbooks running the Intel Atom platform.” We won’t see Moblin for MIDs until 2010. This is leading to thought that MIDs might be taking a quick path to the backseat in Intel’s plans. What’s the problem you may be asking? Aren’t  Netbooks mobile and targeted towards Internet usage? Well they are, and there really isn’t a problem. But let’s look back a bit to the pre-netbook days.

When Intel initially announced its Mobile Internet Device (MID) platform it was to be a device that would fit in your pocket, always connected, and with many of those devices targeted at different segments of the market (entertainment, navigation, etc ). Intel was quite clear early on that devices we were supposed to see in 2008 were early moves towards what would come in 2009 and 2010. They still had work to do.

Then came the Netbook explosion, precipitated by Asus and the Eee line. We all know how that evolved. Netbooks came and conquered are now being blamed for everything from Microsoft’s layoffs to the implosion of the global economy. When the Netbook race began to take off, we heard the first news that shipments of the early MIDs were going to be delayed. I said then, (and this is the I told you so part) that Netbooks were going to eclipse MIDs in everyone’s minds.

Netbooks have taken over and while everyone still scratches their heads over the potential profit margins in the segment, at least at the moment it doesn’t look like the pace will slow down. Intel is focusing on the Atom gravy train, and I’m guessing beginning to doubt the viability of the MID platform in light of that. The Mobiln v2 announcement is showing which way the wind is blowing.  Intel’s initial roadmap showed a long journey, so there is logic in those invested in the MID platform taking a step back and focusing on what’s hot right now. It just makes common sense.

Steve ““Chippy” Paine follows this much more closely and more thoroughly than we do here, and he’s got some excellent writing on this on UMPCPortal.



  1. Nate

    01/28/2009 at 8:12 am

    I don’t get how netbooks have taken over. MIDs were devices that no one wanted to begin with.

  2. Sumocat

    01/28/2009 at 8:47 am

    Seems like “I told you so” is the hot catchphrase for the week. Yesterday’s reports of mercury contamination in high fructose corn syrup gave me a huge “I told you so” in my war on HFCS. And just like yours, it’s hardly the news we wanted to hear.

  3. Chad W Smith

    01/28/2009 at 12:06 pm

    I know it’s not an MID, because it’s not an Intel… But just get an iPhone or an iPod Touch if you want the whole internet in your pocket.

  4. GoodThings2Life

    01/29/2009 at 6:33 am

    Netbooks must be a lot smaller and more portable and inconspicuous than what I imagined, because I have yet to actually see one “in the wild” outside of a store or tech convention. Even at Orlando, Atlanta, and Pittsburgh airports yesterday I didn’t see any floating around.

    I mean, I get it… sales figures are through the roof, but if no one is really using them “in the real world”, what’s really happening with them? Maybe the cheap XP license factor is true, or maybe people are buying them and realizing just how worthless they are or are just using them for use around the home.

    Regardless, the 12.1″ Tablet PC’s are as small as I can stand to use.

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