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ThinkPad takes on the Air

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Road warriors are being given the Gladiator call to arms: warriors, are you ready? That’s the message that Lenovo sent out last week as it unveiled its highly-anticipated ThinkPad X300 notebook PC, the thinnest and lightest full-function notebook in its class ‚ which clearly takes aim at the market targeted by the MacBook Air.

Road warriors, are you ready? Ready for a Windows answer to the MacBook Air, that is?

Lenovo’s new ultra-thin, ultraportable ThinkPad X300 notebook, released in the United States last week, measures less than three-fourths of an inch at its thinnest point, or approximately the height of a U.S. quarter coin, and has a starting weight as low as 2.9 pounds. The MacBook Air, with its similarly sleek and slim styling, is clearly the major competitor in this class.

The new ThinkPad X300 notebook PC measures less than three-fourths of an inch thick with a 7-millimeter thin DVD burner.

The ThinkPad X300 notebook combines a number of leading technologies such as solid-state drive storage, a LED backlit display, ultralong battery life and enhanced wireless connectivity. Rated Gold by the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) for its environmental attributes, it also features a number of environmentally-conscious technologies, such as low-voltage processors.

“The ThinkPad X300 notebook marks a major milestone for the ThinkPad family,”” said Peter Hortensius, senior vice president, Notebook Business Unit, Lenovo. “”ThinkPad has been pioneering notebook PC design for more than 15 years, raising the bar on innovation, and focusing on the core needs of ThinkPad users, namely quality, reliability and functionality.

‚Our customers told us that they wanted a notebook that was amazingly thin and light, but that they still wanted their battery options, their USB ports and of course, their DVD burner. Well the waiting is over, and it’s all there in the ThinkPad X300, our thinnest and lightest ThinkPad ever.””

The ThinkPad X300 notebook PC offers models that can be configured for extreme portability starting or maximum battery life (up to 10 hours) or a balance between the two with a built-in DVD burner.

Key features:

Expanded Multimedia: The ThinkPad X300 notebook offers an optional built-in 7-millimeter slim DVD burner for easy, flexible, on-the-go multimedia capabilities. It also includes stereo speakers, a digital microphone and an integrated camera.

Durability: Constructed with advanced carbon and glass fiber, the ThinkPad X300 notebook’s Next Generation ThinkPad Roll Cage helps protect the notebook from falls and drops that can occur in mobile environments. These same materials are used in building airplanes and Formula One race cars to help reinforce their structure without adding additional weight.

Wireless Connectivity: Users have a variety of connectivity options at their fingertips including models designed for WiMax, when the technology becomes available, as well as ultra-wideband/wireless USB, WWAN, WLAN and GB Ethernet.

Simple Navigation: Built-in GPS functionality ‚ on US models with Verizon WWAN cards only, though – allows mobile users to navigate by helping them to connect to popular mapping programs.

Clearer, Crisper Viewing: The notebook’s 13.3-inch LED backlight WXGA+ high resolution display provides brighter and more energy-efficient performance than LCD displays.

Enterprise-Level Security: Equipped standard with an integrated fingerprint reader, I/O port disablement and 32-byte password protection, the notebook offers a layered security approach to help protect data and unauthorised access.

Enhanced Performance and Data Protection: The notebook comes equipped with a 1.8-inch 64 GB SSD that provides more than twice the performance of a regular 2.5-inch hard drive. With no moving parts, the technology offers more than four times greater shock resistance as well as greater energy efficiency than traditional hard disk drives and contributes to the notebook’s thin and light design. The notebook also comes with the latest Intel Centrino with vPro technology, up to 4 GB memory and Lenovo’s ThinkVantage Technologies.

“”The challenge we shared with Lenovo in its development of the ThinkPad X300 was in making things small without losing key capabilities, such as performance and battery life,”” said Mooly Eden, corporate vice president and general manager, Intel Mobile Platforms Group. “”Intel’s contribution included developing packaging technology that enabled us to shrink the Intel Centrino platform by more than 50 percent, yet retain its high performance and low energy consumption.””

In its first big test out of the gate, the ThinkPad X300 notebook PC will support team members on the official aircraft of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Torch Relay as it launches a demanding 137,000-kilometer, five-continent “”marathon”” this month. Often departing from torch relay cities late at night and arriving at the next city in the early hours of the morning, and with no margin for error, the torch team will rely on both ThinkPad and Ideapad technology to support nearly 22,000 torchbearers, in more than 130 cities worldwide.

Pricing and Availability

The ThinkPad X300 notebook starts at approximately $2,799 in the USA. It is available through Lenovo business partners and http://www.lenovo.com.

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