Black Friday Netbook: $95 7″ Sylvania Netbook at CVS – Bad Buy

Black Friday is a great time to look for a laptop or netbook, but sometimes a Black Friday Netbook is a bad buy. That’s the case with the 7″ Sylvania Netbook that CVS is selling on Black Friday for $94.88 — $5 off the regular price.

While CVS hasn’t unveiled the spec for their Black Friday Netbook, it looks almost exactly like the netbook they were selling back in September for $99.99 — when we originally called it a bad buy.

Why is the 7″ Sylvania Black Friday Netbook a bad buy? Simple, it’s using older technology that won’t meet the needs of most users. If you look at our things you need to know before buying a Black Friday laptop or netbook, you should pay attention to the operating system section as well as the numerous hardware specifications.

The Sylvania netbook from CVS is almost certainly running Windows CE, that is not compatible with software that users may want to load. Comparatively, most netbooks sold today run Windows 7 Starter or Windows XP.


It is true that this netbook will allow you to connect to the Internet to browse the web, edit some types of documents — but you’ll notice in the video review below that the device will default to the mobile version of each website you visit, instead of the regular one you should find when using a computer.

If, after watching this video you feel that the Black Friday netbook from CVS is right for you, we won’t jump in line to stop you, but most average users will be better served by purchasing a netbook that runs Windows XP or Windows 7 Starter with real support for the programs, the web and video.

It is highly likely that $80 more will get you a real netbook on Black Friday, or you can find a used netbook with better specs for a little over $100.


  • Josh, the pegboard computer is here, like it or not The idea is to get computer-like devices into places where they can be an impulse buy, drive up the sales volume, and race to the bottom in price.

    The crux of the matter is to find out how low we can go. I would estimate $50 or a little less, using today’s components and settling for minimal performance.

    The real benefit of all this is that it will drive down the prices of all computers, software, and related products and will get these into the hands of even more people, in fact, most everyone.

    The idea is not to provide an optimal computer for all. People will have to decide for themselves what they need and can afford. Many reviewers of products, on the other hand, have an opposing motive: They want to keep prices up and cash flow with it, benefiting the electronics industry itself, fan magazines and websites, and other enterprises employing the reviewers.

    CVS deserves a lot of credit for achieving the revolutionary goal at which One Laptop Per Child failed!

    • Joy says:

      I got it and still cannot get on the internet. It picks up and connects to my router, but will not display web page. So disappointed. Was for a tween to do homework research.

      • becky says:

        Same thing here.

        • davin says:

          same here. cannot get on internet even when it is showing my router, and the necessary credentials are provided…yet the flipping thing is saying it is connected. RRRRRRR

      • Joe says:

        I work in an Internet cafe, and one of the regulars brought one of these in. It was not getting the dns settings from the router over DHCP so I manually set up googles public DNS as the default dns servers and away she went on the Internet, although too slow to be very useful. Googles public dns is and

        • CARMELLA says:

          If you originally put in a key code for your initial wireless, you will need to go into wireless options on this little thing and put in that code. It will look like your wireless is running but will show “This page cannot be displayed” until you go and put in your key code.

      • I had connection issues also, you need to go to the Sylvania website and download the firmware update. I did and haven’t had anymore problems it finds wifi spots quickly. I also downloaded the the opera mobile web browser.

        I paid 89.99 at CVS , they have digital picture frames for this price , I can view pictures, listen to music (best through head phones) , read ebooks, email an much more.I had connection issues also, you need to go to the Sylvania website and download the firmware update. I did and haven’t had anymore problems it finds wifi spots quickly. I also downloaded the the opera mobile web browser.

      • Amanda says:

        Had same issue..Changed from WPA to WPA2 Option after dbl clicking on my router and got on. But day 2 keep freezing now and getting an explorer application error. :( Biggest problem is after 18 hrs still no battery charge. If I unplug from the outlet immediately shuts off and will not turn on..Bad Battery? Id check my other as I bought two but 1 came with no plug! Ugghhh..My local store has already had 11 returns due to lack of plug or other issues..

    • Beverly Glen says:

      I purchased 2 of these computers tonight from CVS. 1st computer’s touch pad did not work. 2nd computer had some other type start up application but it was not Windows CE. Could not get onto the web on either machine. bought both machines as a Gift. Believe me it was a huge embarrasment. Never will I buy Sylvania products again if I can help it. Both machines cost me $200.00 together. statement on box says that the machines helps you get down to basics…well basically i would appreciate it if the computers worked properly. Plan to return both PC in the morning. wouldnt recommend this product to anyone.
      no stars…

  • remaras says:

    Although I do appreciate lower priced devices, I don’t believe these devices will actually make it. Remember Walmart’s attempt of selling a very economical Linux based computer. People brought them back because they not familiar with operating system. People have gotten used to Windows and a certain set common features.

    • Panix says:

      This is the 2nd year of the low priced netbooks running Windows CE. The idea is to offer a low cost option for the person using the 4 year old cellphone, but wants to check email on the go. It is currently $145 dollars less than a traditional netbook running Windows 7, and for a non tech consumer, it may be difficult to convince them to spend the extra money when all they want to do is keep up with firends on facebook.

      • Tom M says:

        Excellent! I was thinking about this very issue. Use this to replace a feature/smart phones non-phone features at a

        significantly lower cost.

        If you need frequent but not continous access and you have multiple access to wifi hot spots this will hit the spot!

        ps. digitalgadgets has just posted an os update for this box. Back up your data ifit is in my docs. If its on the sd card it won’t go away.

        I have also started a yahoo group on this machine.


  • Lorraine says:

    Thank you for this information. After receiving a CVS catalog today with this item in it I was contemplating buying 4 of them. Glad I did some research. You are 100% right. It is Windows CE. I won’t waste my time or my money.

  • J.R says:

    Will it run one of the netbook Linux distributions like Meego?

    • Tom says:

      Apparently you can’t add any “3rd party” applications according to an e-mail I got from the digitalgadgets tech support.

      My guess is you would have to replace the memory chip the current os is booting from to run another os.

      I think you could characterize this as an “internet appliance” rather than a netbook…


      • Tom M says:

        I was mis-informed. You can install 3rd part apps that were written specifically for Win CE v6 for the Arm cpu. Search for wince6freefiles.zipwhich has 50 megs ofapps that will install with this os.

        Also, you can both upgrade or replace the os using a SD card with the new install in script sub-dir. Get the new os upgrade! It looks a bit more like vista/win7.


        • mike says:

          tom i just bought the sylvania 7″synet07526 you seem very knowledgable with a little work i now can get online why can i not watch utube or videos have player and windows media any upgrade info for this would be apperciated wher do i get the os upgrade and how much (my email is mikearm1962@ what is your support email thanks mike

          • Xiromisho says:

            The reason you won’t be able to watch any videos is because Windows CE has no flash support, similar to the iOS (probably about the same – LOL!) Adobe has not written a flash player for Windows CE and probably will not write one as the Windows CE OS is normally used for POS (that’s Point of Sale, btw, not… well … ) so they have very very very little support and most of the “Apps” are made to assist in the POS situation. Basically these are supposed to be loaded on those little touch screens you see employees at McDonalds using… but in all honesty they are probably using something more up-to-date than CE by now. My ISP Cablevision considers the Windows CE OS Obsolete and will not support the device.

          • Tom M. says:

            Win CE 6 runs an older version of Flash so something that uses the current release won’t run.

            There is a YouTube App that will play many YouTube videos using the CORE video player. You can logon to YouTube via the IE and do everything but play the videos. Play the videos in the App.

            Recommend you increase the number of simultaneous webserver connections to 25. Registry hacks on the internet.

        • Frank says:

          I bought a Sylvania netbook at CVS. I am a gadget freak. Initially, it would connect to my wireless router but not to the Internet. I could connect to the Internet via the ethernet connection. I downloaded the new operating system from digital gadgets on my laptop, unzipped and copied to a SD card. I inserted the card in the netbook, turned it on, waited for it to upgrade the netbook, and then turned the netbook off. When I restarted the netbook,all I had was icons for My Computer and Recycle Bin. Clicking on My Computer brought many of the familar icons(Explorer,etc) but none will do anything. To make matters worse the r,t,f,g,v,and b keys do not work. Do I have a dud or can you suggest what to do to make my netbook functional?


          • Frank says:

            Partially solved my netbook problems. I copied the file, OS system update, to The SD card and inserted it in netbook before turning it on. Needless to say, this messed the netbook up. I then individually copied the files in OS system update including script and update, repeated the procees and the netbook OS was updated successfully. The keys would still not work so I returned the thing to CVS.

          • Chris says:

            Frank, what do you mean you “individually cop;ied the files in OS system update”. After unzipping the file, there is no folder or file called OS system update. Your instructions are simply too vague to be helpful.

        • Tonia says:

          Tom how do you hook up the wifi on the sylvania netbook. Please help

        • Frank says:

          I downloaded a zipped folder from digital gadgets called Sylvania OS update. I unzipped this folder which contained two files called script and a text document called changes. I copied the scipt file to a SD card. I booted the netbook with the SD card inserted and the OS was updated.


    • Tracer says:

      Yes You Can install Linux on this machine. See These Links:

      I’m not sure if this machine uses the ARM 8505 or 8500 chip; both are referenced and there are custom Linux builds for each. Put the Linux on its own SDRAM card ($5 2-Gig) and you can use Firefox, etc.

  • cameron says:

    I recently bought one of these from CVS Pharmacy and like the author said

    it was a piece of junk. my netbook by LG Electronics is a much better laptop computer.

    • Boyd says:

      and how much did you pay for the LG Electronics laptop? around $245?

      My Pinto is a piece of junk, my Lexus is a much better car. You see where the logic of comparison fails?

      • Ken says:

        Do the actual comparison. This or an Ipod Touch. What?! You are willing to pay $200 more to accomplish the same thing, mobile version of heavy websites like youtube, ebay, etc. Your LG isn’t a laptop. It’s a netbook. Get it right.

      • amagopslop says:

        Your logic is flawed in the fact that the Sylvania won’t even go from point A to B. At least the Pinto did that much. Quality is not a direct connection to quality, but cheap is cheap!

  • jonathon says:

    thanks very much i was thinking to tell my dad to buy me one for $100 but i change my mind. thanks again.

  • Em says:

    I was thinking of it for my 14 yo, just for basically for you tube and facebook, will this work for that?

  • I bought a CVS Netbook when they were offered during September. I have been writing about it on my social media column on the Knoxville Examiner, if anyone is interested. Here is the link…..There are about 12 articles, I think.

  • Juan m says:

    this has any program (word to tape homework)

    • Tom says:

      It has a version of “WordPad” from the Windows world so you can perform some wordprocessing. WordPad has no spelling checker. If the “you can’t install 3rd party apps” holds up then you can’t add a spelling checker to it.


  • Bill Kibler says:

    There is one point that everyone has been missing – I can’t buy a commercial arm system for industrial control for less than $100! I just took my netbook apart and will be talking to it serially tomorrow. As industrial computers go for embedded work, this thing is perfect – 3 USB, RJ45 for networking, SD card interface – try buying an arm system for less than $200 that has that much hardware. It should run both Android and Debian linux, and give us hackers a few more weeks and we will show you how to turn it into all sorts of network devices – I plan to turn mine into a solar powered web server – after all it only uses 4Watts. Once linux is running on it – it is only up to the user as to how much it can do. The bento site I believe has tools for loading linux on it.

    • GeronL says:

      It is only a matter of time until we all see what can be done with it. There are still people maxing out Commodore 64’s out there. I was thinking of getting my niece one of these things but I probably won’t now.

    • Tom says:

      I see where you are coming from but I suspect you have to replace the os image chip somehow before you could open up the access.

      Until someone actually suceeds in over-writing the current os without replacing the ram I will assume this thing is seriously locked down.

    • j says:

      God bless Linux

      is there anything it cant do?

  • Melissa says:

    It’s a NETBOOK, not a notebook, not a laptop, not a desktop. It is for internet browsing, not complicated processing.

    • You can call it whatever you want, but it’s still a waste of cash. There’s no excuse to buy this Sylvania netbook when there are plenty of computers that cost a bit more, but are actually useful for the things you mentioned and a lot more.

  • Abi says:

    Well, on a scale of 1-10, I give this about a 4. I found it online from another site for $79, so I thought I’d take the plunge.

    Getting it to connect wirelessly was OK. Follow the instrctions, but be sure to click on the “WiFi Power” Icon right away. Make sure it says “Power Off”- because that means it’s on. It’s kinda like a manual switch that sticks further out when it’s off. Then click on the icon in the tray for wireless. The BIG thing here is to be sure your security settings for your wireless network and those on the netbook are the same. Then enter in your passkey or the 26 network key. This is where I got stumped.

    It can get basic email(yahoo, gmail, etc) easily(slowly, but easily). Facebook does work, but it’s the mobile app, and the specialized YouTube app on the computer. If a site is mainly text or has a mobile app option it will work. Also, the IM feature works. One of my favorite games, Kingdom of Loathing works just fine, but that’s because it’s so simple. If you have a page with lots of info or apps on it, it will either load with errors or take FOREVER. Most sites will load with errors, and the netbook isn’t afraid to tell you that…

    On to the stuff it won’t do… I tried to do Netflix- no dice on the CE operating system. I tried to view a video on yahoo, and again, no dice. I tried to view a YouTube video ON the non-specialized app(the regular site), and it was also a no-go. One of my favorite sites, is slow and although I’ve gotten into it, it hasn’t worked yet.

    In a nutshell, my best impression of this netbook is it’s designed for teenagers to keep up to date with their friends wirelessly without costing mom and dad an arm and a leg in texting fees. For $99, that might be worth it. But, otherwise, I’m not so sure.

    Please bear in mind that I am NOT a technical person in any way, shape or form. This is what I’ve noticed just from using it tonight. Will I return it? Dunno. For me, and the limited uses I have on the net, it’s not so bad. Plus, from what I hear most netbooks have limited features anyway, so I’m just getting fewer, for less money. For me, not such a bad deal because I didn’t want to spend a lot of money and don’t need a lot of fancy do-dads…

    • Tom says:

      For what it is worth, there is an updated WiFi driver on the website. I have also been able to get the dslreports connection speed for really dumb cellphones to run on it.


    • G says:

      Thanks for the review Abi, yours seems to be the most helpful here yet.

    • jisuzu says:

      I noticed a hard wired internet connection works much better than the wireless. It does need a strong signal or it will drop and reconnect a lot which goes on in the background, and slows down your browsing.

    • Tom M says:

      you can speedupthe browser by turning off the activeX andJavascripting as wellas most ofthe Multi-media toggles. Leave the play video and display pictures toggled on.

    • ez steve says:

      where did you find your passkey or network key?

      i can’t get it to connect to wifi & support keeps walking us thru the same as the instructions over & over.

  • Jessica says:

    Thank you for the review. I am actually going to pick this up. Although we already have two PC’s and 4 laptops in our household, this would be a perfect Christmas gift for my 10yr old. Her main usage is to go to Disney & Nick. If she breaks it, or downloads a virus….. Hey, its only $95.00!!

    • Paulette says:

      That’s why i wanted to buy this too. My 9 yr. old wants to play on those sites and Monster High. I wasn’t sure if the videos from the sites would play….have you tried that yet? If so, let me know! Thanks!

  • Beth garlitz says:

    I bought two f them, neitherwould hook up to the internet. I never received a call for 4 days from the help line. They said it was my fault. I said I have 5 other things running on this internet and can run a whole lot more. What is wrong with you product. They never helped, so back both went.

  • pam says:

    they are on sale again at CVI for 90 bucks, the ad started today, but when I went to get one, sorry, e sold out last friday, te paper clearly sates ad strts november 21, 2020, i to a raincheck, but t hey did not take my name or number to contact me on, I just hafe to keep buggimg you, but………………

  • Mokie says:

    My wife purchased one for me about a month ago. For the price, I have no trouble getting on the internet and I am able to view most You Tube material. I agree it is not perfect and would not be useful for a student but for the occasional user who wants to take something, net compatible, to the local McDonald’s, it works fine. Do bring headphones as the speakers are near useless and do consider a mouse as well.

  • Sylvania 7″ netbook has problems,problems and more problems. Cannot connect to Internet. Called customer service twice over last two weeks. Each time told something different, worked momentarily, then stopped working. Today the customer service number says it has an extremely high call volumne and cannot accept your calls, so leave a message. I left my name and number at 11 a.m. today and it is 8 p.m. now and STILL no response. Sent an e-mail too, and NO response. Reps unable to explain how to make netbook connect to Internet. You follow the instructions, connect to WiFi, click on Explorer and get a blank page with message cannot find server. P.S. Reps I spoke to all have Indian names and speak with heavy accents. Don’t know if calls are being sent to India. P.P.S. tommorrow returning it to CVS Pharmacy for a full refund. Waste of money.

  • Donald says:

    I picked up a Slvania 7 from CVS and the first thing I did was try and go onto the Internet. I just wouldnt work. I called the service department and got a recorded message. I also email them and after three Emails I got a message stating that they were swamped and I can send the Netbook back to be replaced with a New One. Alarms strarted going off the moment I was having problems with customer support. I am waiting for a UPS label to come in if I dont get it by monday I plan on sending the D.. thing back to CVS and contacting every blog.

  • skids says:

    I’m spoiled, stupid, fat and lazy …this product is probably not for me.

  • Walter says:

    DO NOT BUY!! I purchased 2 of these today at CVS and within a 2 hours they were returned. They have no hard drive, only 128mb of RAM so if you like the days of Windows 95 technology or that of a 5 year old smartphone, this is the device for you. For those that say it’s only $95, it would be like me selling you tires with almost no tread for 1/3 the cost of new ones… yes, they are cheap but you are not a good value. This netbook is a piece of junk that does less than most current model cell phones.

  • Heather says:

    I am considering one for my 5 year old – obviously the only thing she will use it for is to play games on Disney and Nick Jr. Can anyone tell me if this netbook is capable od doing that? Thanks!

  • G says:

    Hi all, can anyone answer about the “wordpad”… can you open up the ‘wordpad’ files on a regular windows xp computer, i.e. after uploading them as an email attachment.. (then downloading them from your email on a regular computer)

    Would this be a good buy for a portable writing tablet?

    Internet I would expect its a netbook.. its not gonna be as good or as fast as your desktop at home…

    What games are on there? Can you play online backgammon?

    • jisuzu says:

      Yes, wordpad docs are editable by word or other computers running wordpad, including other OS’s (most have some support for wordpad since it’s been on every MS OS for years and years). While the keyboard is OK and the mouse works, plugging in external ones make it easier – but of course then you have to take up more space on your lap. :) IE6 supports a lot of websites but newer java and CSS do not work, so your online usability is not as good as a full laptop.

    • Tom M says:

      Yes, there is a Wordpad app on Windows XP in the acessories menu.

      I suspect word will read and convert the files to .doc format. The Wordpad/Pword app also appears to support older word .doc formats.

      I believe the os update doesn’t have wordpad although it does have another editor.

  • David says:

    Its way to slow for connecting to yahoo, and does not give all the yahoo site menu items.

    It has 3 games, a version of xcell and another planner thats like xcell

    Keyboard is too tiny to touch type, but think you can add a usb keyboard.

    Text maker does have spelling check and thesoras and data base optins plus user dictionarys.

    Has skype calculator recorder .

    Its ok as a small computer but not very good for internet as you will be missing some options on many web sites, and way too slow. It took about 10 seconds just to wait to see the yahoo web page only to find out its missing important menu items.

    Probably ok for an email device as it has a pop3 email reader, so you do not have to connect to the web site of your email provider.

    Think maybe an acer would be better. Do like the small size and portability of this device, but yes it does need windows.

    You probably can download ce windows applications and then run them as it does have a flash drive, and you can add more on its usb ports.

    But where does anyone have ce applications?

    I am taking it back to kmart for a refund today.

    • Ken says:

      You obviously are not comparing apples to apples. This is like your Apple Ipod Touch. Ooops… you forgot it uses mobile version of youtube, ebay, etc. Oops, you are still willing to pay $200 more for doing the same thing. Look online for Windows CE. You could probably purchase the whole CE library of applications for $10 or less.

  • Peter says:

    I bought one of these back in September, and for 99 dollars, I think it’s a great deal. Of coures if you never use it, then your throwing away your money, you really need to know what your buying.

    It would be fairer to compare this to a pda device such as a dell axim, or even an ipod, rather to a windows 7 notebook. It’s basicly meant to be an internet appliance, and if you install opera mini for windows mobile it’s pretty fast at surfing the web. Sorry no youtube, I think opera and youtube are having some kind of a feud. I did get youtube to work with internet explorer but it is really slow, more lik a slideshow.

    The hardest thing is to find software for this device, maybe if it becomes more popular you will be able to get more software, as for now, you have to do a lot of searching, and be more of a tinkerer. For you nostalgia fans, you can play doom and duke3d, there is also a zip file out there with other apps including games and a complete office suite.

    Anyway this is something I can browse the web with when my wife is using the computer. It is a pretty powerful windows ce device, but there’s the catch, it’s a windows ce device. (By the way, the new windows mobile phones have an operating system based on windows ce 6, as does the zune).

  • Russ D says:

    Question – or observation, really – Sounds like, that with no HDD, you aren’t going to be downloading anything, right? 128mb RAM?

    Sorry, but I see much more powerful netbooks on sale for 149.00 to like in the 180’s.

    Seems like as cheap as flash memory has gotten, that someone could build a little guy like this with a real OS and real storage, etc. But then power requirements would go up, right? Then it “dominoes” all the way up to probably the same price as those other existing netbooks – and would still not be as useful. Even a $200 (basically twice the cost) iPhone does the whole flippin’ internet, does games, apps and has gigs of storage!

    ALMOST got one of these. Not now. No YouTube? Mobile versions of websites? No – the internet is rich, vibrant and evolving. This is the braille version of experiencing it!

    • Ken says:

      Do the comparison as it really is. You would spend $300 for an Ipod Touch that does exactly the same thing. Try streaming Youtube on Ipod Touch and you’ll find the same problems. Concurrent or applications of Microsoft Office. Mobile apps of heavy download websites such as youtube, ebay, etc. Windows CE has applications. Can you load them on the “embedded” memory? No. Can you use the Flash card memory for apps? Oh, yes, you can. Spend that $250 more on a “real” laptop. That is not a real laptop either. It is a netbook. It can do Internet browsing wonderfully, but it can’t do game applications or high hardware requirement applications like MS office. Thus, forget about spending money on shortcut things that call themselves laptops and buy the $700 complete laptop. Oops… wait a minute. You still can’t run the latest games because the hardware is too limited still. I know. Buy a real computer for $2000. Good luck carrying that around. BTW, good luck getting the $149 netbook. I hear they have 2 per store and the line formed before Thanksgiving.

    • Tom M says:

      You can add upto a 8 GB SD card as well as use USB stick drive on any of the usb ports. The port onthe back is the high speed one.

  • shevon says:

    Don’t bother. I made the mistake and there was no AC adaptor in the box. When I tried customer support, the reply was “ticket closed”. No tech support, no customer service. Waste of money.

  • JIsuzu says:

    My opinion: Good for what it really is, if you truly have limited requirements. (It is NOT a netbook/laptop. It’s a big PDA.) But it’s Great for a development platform!!

    Bought one thanksgiving day as an accommodation for my son with dyslexia. He can type much easier than he can write, and using a keyboard is a common accommodation for dyslexia in the classroom.

    The WinCE 6.0 Pro OS it comes with is quick and works pretty well, considering it’s got a CPU that is not much stronger than most new GPS devices. But the manual stated that “mobile printers” work and that they don’t provide support. The truth is, the system I got lacked printer drivers (pcl.dll, usbprn.dll) that are required for Windows CE to print to PCL-compatible USB printers. So while CE 6.0 CAN print, this device won’t because the manufacturer did not build printing support into the OS.

    Out of the box you get office XLS/PPT/Word viewers (note just viewing, not editing) and wordpad. A couple games, and IE is 6.0 version so many websites are dropping support for this obsolete browser. So IE works mostly – I can send live mail but not edit google docs, for example. Remote Desktop also works great. And the Youtube app seemed to work well.

    If you want a CE based Office suite, I suggest SoftMaker Office ($).

    For me, I am using MS Platform Builder to build my own OS for it (Wince6) and copying the DLL’s and items I need over to the netbook. I have successfully printed to Dell Color Laserjets, added Freeware Windows CE apps to it for Office and document creation, and removed anything not related to my son’s schoolwork.

    I am also writing a little VBScript application to verify the system is set up properly (owner name, icons, shortcuts, printers, etc) at startup, so my sone does not have to worry about messing with stuff.

    If it works, I’ll grab a real license for my OS (not MSDN) and reload the device.

    So, I will have a solid state 7″ internet device with a full keyboard, wireless and wired networking, audio, USB, and SD card for document storage that my son can write his school work on and print with. It’s got a good battery life, no moving parts, and it isn’t something he will be able to mess up with software or games he downloads from the internet. Sounds like a win to me!

    I was thinking this device might also be useful with a USB GPS dongle attached, or in a retail store environment as a mobile POS station with some additional development.

  • ivy says:

    I bought this on black friday from kmart. Terrible device. I’m not a computer wiz but I can figure this out pretty quickly. I have been to two different places to try to connect to the internet. Nothing. After reading this page I can tell you ever person with negative comments is right. No internet no videos no documents worth typing on here. I will be returning it tonight. Good riddance this POS.

  • ivy says:

    P.s. To all the parents wondering if they should buy this for their children, are you blind? People are non stop saying they can’t get youtube to open how in the world is your 8 year old going to play on disney????? Clearly that won’t be happening!

    P.p.s. I’m on my blackberry getting better internet that this joke of a ‘netbook’

    • Jimmy says:

      I had no problem at all getting you tube to work. Had some problem getting the WI-FI, but found out that was the operator and not the net-book. I wish there were more options available, but for the price I am very pleased. I bought 2 for 11 year olds, and I plan to se what add-ons I can install using flash drives and Sd cards. I am thinking of possibly trying to find another web browser that I can install on an external HD or SD card to see if it will run on CE. for the 11 year olds it seems fine to me and I look forward to experimenting with it to see what kind of additional performance I can get out of it.

  • Ken says:

    To all those who have “better” devices, I say this. If you don’t need anything comparable, why don’t you recycle your Apple Ipod Touch? I am pretty sure someone would be able to benefit from your donation. Compare apples to apple (pun intended). For those having problems connecting to the Internet, I suggest taking a course on WEP and WPA networks so that you understand that basic Wifi isn’t a sitdown and connect. It involves configuring the SID, network pass key, and other things that you simply don’t understand. For those who want more applications on Windows CE, use a flash drive and buy the entire CE library for peanuts. Can you run Office on Ipod Touch… yet?

  • Ken says:

    In case anyone is interested in Windows CE:

    For a sampling of Windows CE applications to use on your flash drive.

  • aveilleux says:

    Man. Ken is really obsessed with ripping apart the iPod Touch, isn’t he? (Posted from an iPod Touch, purchased refurbished for $50.)

  • k_boogie11 says:

    i just purchased 1 of these for my niece i think it’s ok just for utube or facebook.but i think for all u computer guys and girls u should kinda help us noobs out. even if u think it’s a pos

  • ejoy says:

    can not connect in whole foods starbucks or mcdonalds. very very frustrating. spent hours trying

    • Tom M says:

      There was an wifi up-date before they posted the os update. Have you ever connected to wifi before? If not, you may need some tutoring to learn how.

      I would install the osupdate because it includes the wifi update.

  • Terri says:

    There is an OS update on their support site: I’ve installed it and it is a lot more robust. Their specs & documentation now say that it comes with Windows CE 6.0 professional plus version. I’m going to play with it more tomorrow, but looks promising. P.S. I didn’t have any trouble connecting to my home network (WPA2-PSK setup) before or after this install.

    • Leigh says:

      Terri, what’s the difference between the OS update and the OS version installed on the machine? I am considering downloading it, but I don’t want to mess up anything.

      • Tom M says:

        The desktop looks a little more like vista/win7. It has several more desktop links to websites/apps that will run on the win ce. One is a games website with games you can install.

        It includes the wifi update aswell as a newer kernal that is 2 minor revisions newer. It maybe faster. I still had to apply the web browser changes to speedit up.

        Wordpad/pword is gone. It has another editor. Wordpad/pword canbe re-installed from

      • Terri says:

        Tom covered it. I don’t really remember what the “before” OS was like, but I it was limited enough that I couldn’t navigate it very well. At least with the update, it has a familiar look and feel to it and I can find my way around the file system and desktop. I didn’t realize that Wordpad was gone, so make sure you know where to get a download before trying the OS upgrade (you can’t go back).

        Currently, my biggest beef with the system is that I can’t get Pandora to play. Also, I’m still trying to find any downloaded apps that will execute. I keep getting the “not a valid Windows CE” error. Will keep trying…

  • lisa says:

    it sucks don’t buy it can’t wait to return it

  • Theresa says:

    I have a excellent signal via Wifi, but IE will not connect to any websites. I loaded the rt2870 patch onto desktop (via usb) but their instructions are NOTHING near what I am prompted with. Now the file is on my desktop as rt2870.dll and I have no clue what to do. Forget tech support, they never asnwer any of my questions, they send me the same reply over & over!

  • Theresa says:

    I finally got the patch loaded, but still cannot access the internet. Connection is excellent – I think this netbook is a piece of junk. It worked fine at the hospital last week, I can only conclude that it has to do with my qwest connection

    • Tom M says:

      I suggest you delete the home connectionthenturn off the netbook. Wait at least20 seconds, re-start netbook.

      turn on wifi. Select your home netork, right click choose configure.

      Then set it up just like you set up your other laptop(s).

      It should have already identified everything but your security phrase.

      Type that in, hit save. Then with it highlighted, click connect.

      Hope this helped.

  • Leigh says:

    Theresa, I had a similar problem. I changed my network settings a bit and that has seemed to help. Click on Start then go settings then go to network connections. Once you’re under network connections, right click on RT28701 and highlight properties. The RT28701 settings should appear. Click on the Name Servers tab. Change both primary DNS and Primary WINS to Make sure to remember the original address, just in case this does not work.

    See if that helps.

  • Teresa says:

    I want to buy one of these just to play simple card games …don’t need internet… will that work?

  • Rick L. says:

    Boy am I lost! I can’t get past the “Network Key” input on the menu – what the heck IS my network key???? The wireless access password doesn’t work. It’s listing my wireless router network and tell me that I have excellent signal strength – but this is as far as I get.

  • Robyn says:

    I am considering buying this for my 7 year old. She likes to get on Barbie and Dress-up sites and her class website. That will be about the extent of her use for this. Would it be suitable for a 7 year old?

  • Terri says:


    I bought this thinking my 7 year old could use it too. After testing, I’ve concluded that the sites she wants to go on (Build-a-bear, Nick Jr., Disney, etc.) will not be fully accessible. Some videos will play, but the games require Adobe flash versions or java which are not available on the current operating system (Windows CE). For a casual user, modifying the system to run a different OS will be too difficult, with questionable results.

    You would be better off buying a refurbished laptop or looking at new netbooks/tablets that run Android or Windows 7 starter. You’ll be able to use/navigate the system much more easily than this one.

  • Cindy J says:

    If you are having trouble connecting make sure that you have also clicked the wireless connection icon on the desktop so that it says wireless power off (raised button says opposite of current status). Otherwise your attempts to connect through the windows wi fi feature will all fail. I think netbook is a piece of garbage. Froze 6 times just trying to leave a reply here.

  • Vi says:

    I had some trouble with the thing. It picked up the signal from my Belkin wireless router fine but the web page wouldn’t open. I finally followed the instructions on the insert, and went to START, Network, and made sure that it was set to find the addresses. I had also entered the codes from the router settings. Not sure which did the trick, because it then worked fine. I thought it had youtube though. It surfed Google fast and went to facebook. It starts and turns off very fast. I’m just going to have to decide whether to give it to a teen or not. How would I will able get you tube or music on this? Youtube said to upgrade the browser.

  • Mindy says:


  • Nichole says:

    We bought one of these for each of our kids. They LOVE their computers and are so proud of them. I agree it’s ideal for me but these give kids an example and experience with their own computers without beating up ours at a good price.

  • Nichole says:

    I do have a question. Is there a security program I can install on the netbooks, that prevent virus’ and such? Or is it built in? I have found information that says there is no need for virus protection.

  • Nichole says:

    Ok, once I get playing with this piece of sh@t I decided to take it back and get the kids a refurbished laptop. You can not do anything on this thing and it’s not worth the money!!! Worst thing I have ever bought.

  • k_boogie11 says:

    i tried to install the update and now the it seems everything is wiped out . the only thing i see on my display is recycle bin and my computer and i cant get nothing back

  • Rica says:

    We have 2 of these one works great however the other ishaving issues with IE. Both have been set up the same by me so I’m sure its not something I’ve done. Wifi strength is good but whenopening IE it does ‘t connect.

    Any hints on how to fix would be great…..master 15 can have a go at tring to sort it out.

  • Mom o 4 says:

    I have wasted way too much time trying to figure out how to get online and still not on. I’m bringing it back tomorrow. My 14 year old will be way happier picking out something himself or adding a few bucks and getting something that will actually work. Who has time for this??

  • jeffrey a says:

    bought one of these for christmas for my 9 year old i have three boys and boght the older to a real laptop so didnt have much money left so i thought i try one of these had to return three of them to get one that actally worked the main problem now is when you on an internet sight you only see part of the screen if anybody knows how to fix this please reply

  • Kay says:

    i have this netbook and downloaed Opera Mini 5.1 to it, it was great buti accidently removed the program from the netbook. i’ve tried redownloading several times but it does not let me open the application and i cant find the application either. help?

  • Deb Hanson says:

    I bought this for my 7 yr old for Christmas – got a great deal $70 at CVS (with coupon). It does exactly what I want it to do for her. Which is just visit internet sites required by her teacher. Thats it no more. NO more needed. It is not designed to do more. Just designed to eliminate the fighting over internet time at my house with 4 kids. Good luck.

  • People need to get real about what this thing can do. This device is equivalent to a 1998 desktop that cost $2000. How many college kids didn’t have that in 1998?

    Go to a book store and price 13 paperback books. $8 a piece is $104. 4 hard covers are $100. A Harry Potter box set of books is $50 to $122 for paperback vs hardcover.

    The Sylvania is slow with fancy websites but it is fine with Project Gutenberg. There are more than 800 works of science fiction out there. Unfortunately they are not all good. Here is one:

    There is this:

    and there is this:

    The Sylvania is a bargain if properly used. The real cost is time wasted finding good stuff on the Internet.

    I read two Harry Potter books just to try and see what the big deal was. Andre Norton is better.


  • James.. says:

    i cant connect to the internet.. i went to their website and i followed the steps **which was the same thing i had done in the beginning** and obviously didnt work.. i have no idea what to do.. if searches for networks ..finds mine.. type password.. and doesnt work… i dunno what else to do.. anyone? i call this place and no one answers or anything

  • dario says:

    i have one iit works greatt i download mozilla firefox fast speed worth it

  • Linda says:

    My husband bought one for our daughter so she could play Club Penguin, but it won’t let her play any games. Can anyone give me any suggestions for how to make this thing useful to an 11 year old? Right now she doesn’t do anything with it. Foolishly, I threw the box away, so I can’t take it back. My daughter does not have email or facebook, so those aren’t options for her. Can we upgrade something? I am not computer savvy at all, so I need some real instruction.

    • Janet says:

      What on Earth made your husband think this thing could play games? I suggest a new husband. Yours is an idjit. You would think he would at least check reviews of this garbage before DROPPING 100 BUCKS AND THROWING THE BOX AWAY.

      How to make this thing useful to an 11-year-old: get her an email and facebook.

  • D. Harmon says:

    It is a piece of junk, the digital gadgets support center is a joke. DO NOT BUY!

  • Charlie says:

    I just bought one on Impulse $109.00 after Tax , I see Locked WiFi Signals , have not yet been able to get online with it on WiFi , I have Read Bad Reviews , Costumer Service did call Me Right Back , I used my DSL & it Takes me to where i can watch You tube Video , But at You Tube I can Not See the Video :/ & i think i found Win CE apps that Might Work !

  • Rose says:

    We bought two of these and they connected xmas day in two different parts of Florida, the next morning did nothing,deleted the address and did it again still nothing. Have been on and off phone with support @digitalgadgets that is when you can get thru to them, went 4days with recording about bad weather- then when did make contact there was so much noise in back ground you couldn’t hear them ( severly broken accents didn’t help) they walk me thru proccess and still no connection,have spent 3hrs on phone today 20min with support to tell me I need to call my IP company that that the problem is on them. Again 2 1/2 hrs later and supervisor after supervior doing everything tells me it is on their end and a problem with books (pppoe access not responging try again later). CVS says they can’t take back to late this is bull!!! support says call back and give name address and phone # someone will call you back, why do they need address? Tryed calling back after hung up from phone company now back to the bad weather recording, I even sent e-mail like it says to do and never got a call,I also found that they are located in Engelwood, NJ ,I have made contact with family there and weather has been bad but not today or this week where people can’t get to work. Sorry but I smell fraud or/and when complaints start coming in the weather has gotten severe within 2-3hrs of last call or as in the case on Tuesday 20mins after was told needed my IP address call back when have it. We want to return these useless things can anyone help with this. Our 2.1 droid phones get wifi better than these netbooks.

  • margret says:

    im a no-good-at-gadgets mom who has the sylvania netbook. My son got it to do as much as i need. Read and write emails, watch youtube even pay some bills online and search the web. We have time warners roadrunner and for somebody who is not a pcpro it will do.

  • mike says:

    has anyone purchased the new sylvania touchscreen tablet its retailing for $99.99.

  • mike says:

    sorry also available in cvs

  • John says:

    I suggest looking at for the real story on this machine.

  • margie says:

    All i want it is to work. do not where to begin

  • Dennis says:

    Josh, You say in the video that memory can be added. What type of memory is required and how does one go about installing it? The video was well done and very informative.

  • j p otool says:

    so??? on sale again 3 11

  • Heather says:

    Omgosh! My kids were both given this Sylvania Netbook – processor VIA 8505 – 128 MB. I am so incredibly irritated by the POS that these things are! I understand they were bought to make my life easier but they are a complete nightmare. I am have not had one of the connect to the wi-fi two nights in a row since Christmas of last year….I’m not being told HTTP 404 & cannot find server or dns error. What does that mean. I read the comment above about going into each and making them the same, blah blah blah ~ didn’t do a darn thing. Than there’s an update that should be done – well if you can’t connect to the internet how is that to be done?
    Is there anyway possible! to upgrade the Operating system from Windows CE? and to add a flash player of some sort – I have a daughter who is dying to feed her “pets”….I mean seriously…someone anyone who cares about a mother whose at her wits end with these darn “NetBooks!”…Please help!

  • Anonymous says:

    I have one of these little gems. While far from perfect, for $100 it’s not bad. You can use it a bar with wi-fi and it’s cheap enough to deter theft. If all you want is to go around the web it’ll work. If you want a bunch of apps, you will be disappointed. The battery duration is way better than a “good” laptop, a nice selling point. It’ll run for a couple hours while a “good” laptop will die in half an hour.

    I do own a “good” laptop but only use it for long range missions and keep it in the hotel room. Meanwhile the nearly one laptop per child Sylvania 8085 is cheap enough to leave by your cigarettes in a bar during a major party without hardly any worry. It’s “party-rated”.

    I would like to have an OS other than Windows CE, like an Ubantu Linux on it, with the GNU C Compiler. No OS is complete without a programming language to make homebrew apps with. Outside of OS preference, I’m happy with it for missions to bars. A huge selling point is it’s about “too cheap to steal”.

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    is it touch screen

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  • Elayne says:

    Bought this netbook for my granddaughter and this thing will not work. Finally got it to connect to WiFi but cannot connect to internet, facebook, you tube or anything else. This is a piece of junk.

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