With a whole host of weird and wonderful Win 8 devices hitting the shops, this ultra-portable, ultra-useful, ultra-touchy 11.6in Asus leads the pack. Is this finger-friendly netbook worth it?

Asus VivoBook S200E review – netbook or tablet?

Think of this as 70% netbook, 30% touchscreen plaything. Nothing flips out or turns into a stand, but within that standard notebook form you’ll find a fine keyboard/trackpad combo plus HDMI, USB 3.0 and SD slots and Bluetooth – all you’ll need for serious work. The touchscreen side feels more suited to downtime fun.

Asus VivoBook S200E review – power

As you’d expect at this price, the S200E isn’t super-specced – but with an Intel Core i3 processor it’s got enough power to play 3D games – at reduced framerates. There’s also sufficient grunt to handle Photoshop, multichannel music apps and the odd bit of light video editing too.

Asus VivoBook S200E review – design and build

In use the Asus has the feel of a premium device, despite an underlying lack of panache and user-friendliness in the Windows 8 desktop. The trackpad is a tad unresponsive and there’s quite a lot of fan noise, but otherwise it all looks and feels like money well spent – which indeed it is.

Asus VivoBook S200E review – screen

For casual movie viewing the Asus is capable enough for an 11-incher. Playback is smooth, though 1080p vids are scaled down for its lower-res 1366x768 screen, contrast could be better and whites are bluey. Battery life might be limiting on long journeys but it’s fine for a quick iPlayer fix.

Stuff says... 

Asus VivoBook S200E review

A good value netbook with the power to handle all but the most specialist of work and play tasks