|Lenovo launches a netbook
Aug. 05, 2008
Lenovo has announced its entry into the "netbook" market. The Linux-based IdeaPad S9 and Windows-XP-based S10 feature 8.9- and 10-inch displays, respectively, plus 1.6GHz Intel Atom N270 processors, 1.3 megapixel webcams, 802.11b/g wireless networking, and up to 160GB of storage, says the company.
(Click here for a larger view of Lenovo's IdeaPad S10)
Lenovo, best-known for the business-oriented ThinkPad product line it acquired from IBM, launched its consumer-focused IdeaPad product line in January of this year. The new IdeaPad S9 and S10 now extend this line down in both price and size. For example, the S10 measures just 9.8 x 7.2 x 1.08 inches, and will start at approximately $400 in the U.S.
The basic recipe is similar to other netbooks, starting with Intel's 22mm x 22mm, 1.6GHz Atom N270 processor. The N270 has a 533MHz FSB and 512KB L2 cache, and it operates with the 945GSE chipset, which gives devices based on it enhanced graphics and power-saving capabilities, according to Intel.
Like netbook pioneers such as Asus, with its Eee, Lenovo offers its S9 version of the device with an 8.9 inch screen, 4GB of solid-state storage, and, for "certain overseas markets," a version of Linux (Linpus, in this case -- also Acer's distribution of choice for its Aspire One netbook).
For the U.S., Lenovo's sole netbook is the S10, featuring Windows XP Home Edition, a 10.2 inch screen, and 80GB or 160GB of hard disk storage. In this configuration, it competes squarely with other devices such as MSI's Wind NB U100, and Acer's Aspire.
Lenovo's IdeaPad S10 comes in white, black, or the red-and-white version detailed above
The S10 -- and presumably the S9, though Lenovo did not release separate details -- includes a keyboard that's "85 percent of full size," and a case that comes in white, black, or a red-and-white combo. It includes an LED-backlit screen, a 10/100 Ethernet port, 802.11b/g wireless networking, a VGA port, and a "4-in-1" card reader (possibly supporting SD, MMC, Memory Stick, and Memory Stick Pro formats, although these were not specified). The device offers 512GB of RAM on 80GB configurations, and 1GB of RAM on 160Gb versions.
Like many netbooks, the S10 is available with either three-cell or six-cell batteries, providing a claimed life of either three or six hours, respectively. And, like HP's HP 2133 Mini-Note PC, it also includes an Express Card expansion slot, likely useable with third-party cellular modems. The S10 also offers optional Bluetooth, according to Lenovo.
Lenovo claims the IdeaPad S10 netbook has been engineered to reduce the heat emitted on key contact areas, such as the bottom of the PC, the palm rest, and the keyboard. Additionally, an included "OneKey Rescue System" utility is said to help users recover data at the touch of a button should a system error or virus occur.
Features and specifications listed by Lenovo for the IdeaPad S10 include:
- Processor -- 1.6GHz Intel Atom N270
- Memory -- 512MB or 1GB of RAM (rumored to be expandable to 2GB, though not confirmed by Lenovo)
- Display -- 10.2-inch display (S10); 8.9-inch display (S9)
- Storage -- 4GB solid state drive, 80GB hard drive, or 160GB hard drive
- Camera -- 1.3 megapixel
- LAN -- 1 x 10/100 Ethernet
- WLAN -- 802.11b/g wireless
- PAN -- Bluetooth (optional)
- Other I/O:
- Four-in-one card reader
- Express Card slot
- Battery type/life:
- three-cell, three hours
- six-cell, six hours
- Dimensions -- 9.8 x 7.2 x 1.08 inches
- Weight -- 2.4 pounds (S10, with three-cell battery)
According to Lenovo, the IdeaPad S10 will be available in early October. U.S pricing is $400 for a 512MB/80GB configuration, and $500 for a 1GB/160GB configuration. Availability and pricing of the Linux-based S9, which will be targeted at overseas markets, was not available.
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