Apricot Picobook Pro review
The worst-built netbook of them all. Avoid at all costs.
Review Date: 13 Feb 2009
Reviewed By: Tim Danton
Price when reviewed: £254 (£292 inc VAT)
Features & Design
Value for Money
Without a shadow of a doubt, the best aspect of the Picobook is its marketing. Built on abrand that many people still remember fondly from the 1980s, and backed up with a plush, confident-sounding website, you could be forgiven for parting with your cash right there and then.
Unfortunately, the hardware itself is poor. The Picobook received the worst marks from our judges in four out of the five categories: build quality, speaker quality, keyboard and cursor quality, and screen quality.
The lack of build quality is obvious as soon as you pick it up. It not only looks plasticky but feels plasticky, with the whole chassis creaking if you grab it by a corner. The keyboard is similarly disappointing - Apricot's website may claim that its keys are 30% larger than some of its rivals, but when we laid out all 16 netbooks side by side we found it the most difficult to type on.
It's also slow. The VIA C7-M processor inside is no match for Intel's Atom, and that showed in our benchmarks under Windows XP: it scored 0.23, 50% slower than most Atom-powered netbooks.
We wish there was something else to lift the Picobook from rock-bottom position, but with abog-standard 8.9in screen, poor battery life and a 60GB hard disk, all that's left to justify its surprisingly high price is an ExpressCard/34 slot and support for 802.11a.
Apricot initially intended to sell a Linux version of the Picobook, but soon withdrew it from its website. We can't see any reason for someone to buy this Windows version, either.
Author: Tim Danton
- All New HTC One: specs, release date and more
- Energy firms forced to use QR codes on bills
- Google to release "wearable" Android within a fortnight
- US cybersecurity official: What does ISP mean?
- Cameron: 5G networks will download movies in a second
- Europol warns: public Wi-Fi isn't safe
- Privacy groups challenge Facebook's WhatsApp buy
- IDC: iPad intertia opens door for Windows tablets
- Chip breakthrough to eliminate checkout queues
- Rivals put on notice as Spotify snaps up The Echo Nest
- The 5 most interesting UK businesses at SXSW
- Quickest way to upload 1GB? Hop on a train
- Move over Delia: IBM Watson is cooking tonight
- Eric Schmidt on the double-edged smartphone: friend and foe
- Getty joins the race to the bottom
- Hour of Code: five steps to learn how to code
- Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet review: first look
- Sony Xperia Z2 review: first look
- Samsung Galaxy Gear 2 review: first look
- Nokia XL review: first look
- Make the most of your mobile data
- Old-school internet scams: five that just won't die
- Bitcoin believers not worried by Mt. Gox disarray
- How to hack your car
- Small server vs cloud: which is best for SMBs?
- Block party: why do millions play Minecraft?
- What to do if you’re still on Windows XP
- Microsoft Word: top 20 secret features
- Measuring me: is your body the future of security?
- The best mobile apps for business
- Headings vs headers: how to use both in Word
- Windows Server 2012 R2: how the Datacenter edition could change SMBs
- Invoices and VAT: how to set up your documents correctly
- Nexus 5 vs Samsung Galaxy S4 Active: the best phone for avoiding screen burn
- How much is a social user worth?
- The key to choosing a secure password
- Thunderbolt Bridge: a fast Mac migration tool
- Should you advertise on Twitter?
- How to track a lost smartphone
- Self-publishing success: the best way to sell your book