Feb 9th, 2009

A few weeks ago everyone and their dad’s mom’s nephew’s cousin’s friend was talking about Android Netbooks hitting the scene. But even Google would tell you they aren’t really “Netbooks” – for legal reasons.


The term “netbook” was actually trademarked by a company names Psion at least 8 years ago. Recently, portable computing devices – much more so than laptops – with WiFi or other form of web access have been commonly referred to as netbooks. According to CrunchGear, Psion sent out Cease & Desist letters saying that they own the right to the term netbook. While there have been no court cases to determine the legality, Google themselves have, in a way, ruled on the matter.

Google has banned the term “netbook(s)” from being used on Google Adwords, citing trademark violation. Sure, Google could be erring on the side of safety, but one would think that if Google came to this conclusion the United States Government very well could, too. Psion said they will only go after companies using the term netbook in situations they intend to profit on. Intel is using the term netbook in their own promotional materioal and even own the domain name netbook.com. Uhohs…


What term should Netbook be replaced with? Minibook? Intertiny? Portable Computing Device (PCD)? Lil WeenieTops? Lets coin a term here and force the industry to run with it just after we trademark it so we can earn some monies. Sound good? Let’s hear it…

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