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Read the text again and answer these questions

1. Which mobile computer (laptop or notebook) is considered to be technically smaller in size?

2. What is the average weight of a notebook computer?

3. Why did the notebook originally weigh less than the laptop?

4. Why is the size of portable computers decreasing nowadays?

5. What are the reasons the term “laptop” is becoming used not so often?

6. What mobile computers are becoming mainstream devices?

7. Why aren’t netbooks perfect yet?



Is "Laptop" Being Phased Out?


Is there really a difference between a laptop and notebook computer? For most people shopping for a mobile (or portable) computer today, the short answer is “no”. In fact, the difference between a laptop and notebook today is mainly what the manufacturer chooses to call its product. Technically and traditionally, the difference between the two is a matter of size.

Notebook computers typically weigh less than six pounds and are small enough to fit easily in a briefcase. Laptop computers are small enough too that they can sit on your lap. Nowadays, laptop computers are more often called notebook computers, though technically laptops are somewhat larger in size than notebooks.

The laptop was originally designed to be similar to a desktop, but be small and light enough. For this reason, years ago, a laptop had more features than notebooks did, but the tradeoff was it was also a larger and heavier than a notebook. This is because the notebook style of portable computers was for mobility, not just portability. To be a more mobile device, the notebook was a thinner design and it weighed less than the laptop, simply because it didn't come packedwith features and multiple devices and drives.

Today technology allows devices to be smaller and better for mobile computing by design, so the size of portable computers is decreasing.

Another reason the term “laptop” is becoming used not often is because a portable "comparable to desktop" system today could easily lead to heat discomfort if left on your lap for long periods of time. By calling a laptop a notebook, it also removes the association that the portable device is well-suited to being used only on your lap.

People often call their notebook a laptop and use the two words interchangeably. However, most mobile computer manufacturers stopped using the term “laptop” completely; they use the term “notebook.”

At present netbooks are a new category of laptops. It's an inexpensive, lightweight machine which is powerful enough for the basic, day-to-day, Internet-based tasks that people use a regular laptop for.

At the same time, today's netbooks aren't perfect. Since they are such small, inexpensive devices, they include processors, memory, and hard disks several generations behind the ones found in regular notebooks. Even so, the potential is there for netbooks to become mainstream devices.



Listen to four people talking about computers and note what each of them uses computers for.

Can you guess what their occupations are?

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