An email memo making the rounds indicates Samsung (News - Alert) will stop producing netbooks after the first quarter of 2012. The email was sent by the company to its trading partners.
Leaked by the French website blogeee.net and also reported and translated by Engadget, the email states Samsung will switch its focus to 11.6- and 12-inch ultraportables as well as Intel (News - Alert) Ultrabooks.
According to Engadget, the quote does not preclude some ultraportables running cheaper processors like Cedar Trail, which could technically make them into larger next-gen notebooks. It does, however, mention abandoning the 10.1-inch netbook form factor.
The email translation posted on Engadget states, "Following the introduction of our new strategy in 2012, we will discontinue our 10.1-inch (netbook) product range in Q1 2012, in favor of ultraportables (11.6 and 12 inches) and ultrabooks to be launched in 2012."
Samsung reported its third quarter net profits had dropped 23 percent, despite strong smartphone sales. Last month, Samsung reported it had earned $3.09 billion for the three months ending September 30, compared to $4 billion during that same period last year.
Samsung's last major netbook initiative was the launch of a solar powered laptop back in August. Aimed at rural and African markets, the Netbook NC215S offers 14.5 hours of standby capacity compared to other notebooks on the market, with offer seven or eight hours.
Kenya was a key market picked for the launch, which also targeted customers in the Middle East, Europe and Asia. The solar-charged laptop offers a front cover panel that captures energy from the sun and automatically recharges the battery.
"With Netbook NC 215S Samsung is demonstrating its capacity to bring to the consumers technology that satisfies their needs and takes care of the environment," said Samsung Electronics East Africa Business Leader Robert Ngeru.
Edited by Rich Steeves