Lenovo To Launch DVD-Less Ultra-Light ThinkPad - InformationWeek

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Lenovo To Launch DVD-Less Ultra-Light ThinkPad

The 1-inch-thick X301 notebook will offer more storage capacity with the choice of 64-GB, 80-GB, or a new 128-GB solid-state drive.

Lenovo on Monday plans to introduce an ultralight ThinkPad that's faster than the original model launched in February.

Like its predecessor the X300, the stripped-down version of the new X301, which means without a DVD drive or full-size battery, weighs 2.93 pounds and has a full-size keyboard and a 13.3-inch LED backlit display. The difference, however, is in the components.

The X301 gains an average of nearly 20% better performance through the use of the latest DDR3 memory and a faster Intel Core 2 Duo processor, Lenovo said. The machine is available with 512 MB to 2 GB of memory.

In addition, the 1-inch-thick notebook offers more storage capacity with the choice of 64-GB, 80-GB, or a new 128-GB solid-state drive. The latter will be available in September.

The X301 supports Wi-Fi and wireless carriers' broadband networks. In addition, the notebook is available with Bluetooth and Ultra Wideband technology to connect to other devices. Models supporting WiMax are scheduled to ship this year.

Pricing for the X301 starts at $2,599. The notebook is scheduled to be available through Lenovo business partners Aug. 26.

The X300 and X301 are primarily niche products expected to appeal to people willing to pay for a road-ready computer that's lighter and smaller than many other notebooks, but is still feature rich. In place of high-volume sales, Lenovo is seeking recognition as an innovator in the U.S. mobile PC market, where it's primarily seen as a manufacturer of quality business computers that were once owned by IBM.

Lenovo this month jumped into the low-cost mini-notebook market with the release of the IdeaPad S10, which has a 10-inch screen and a keyboard that's 85% the size of a full keyboard. It is powered by Intel's recently released Atom processor for mobile Internet devices. The S10 competes with so-called "netbooks" from Hewlett-Packard, Asus, Micro-Star International Computer, and Acer.

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