Lenovo, hoping to offer schools another
choice to use for their mass laptop rollouts, has apparently taken
the mold of their existing 11.6” ThinkPad X120e consumer notebook,
upgraded the chassis to be much more durable, and readied it for some
other aesthetic and software customizations as the ThinkPad X130e.
Among the physical changes that Lenovo
made include a rubber bumper on the lid, 33% stronger corners, hinges
that can withstand up to 30,000 open-close cycles, and 1.2mm-thick
bezel plastic to help protect the display. School can be a very rough
environment at times, so all of these improvements will help to keep the laptops running for as long as possible.
In addition, all of the ports on the
sides of the notebooks have been reinforced and recessed, so
hopefully we won't be seeing broken USB ports and loose AC adaptor jacks on these any time soon. Lenovo also offers custom asset tags,
BIOS modifications, custom disk image deployment and various colour
options as well.
As far as specs go, Lenovo's press
release tells us that both AMD and Intel processor options will be
available – either the AMD Fusion E-300, E-450, or the Intel Core
i3-2367M, with their respective integrated graphics cores (AMD Radeon
HD 6310, 6320, or Intel HD Graphics 3000). From the photos, I can make
out three USB ports, a Kensington lock slot, a card reader, a wired
LAN jack (there is also WiFi for internet access), a headphone jack,
and HDMI and VGA video outputs for all those class presentations.
The 11.6” display will probably have
a standard 1366x768 resolution and a matte finish. Storage will
consist of either a 128GB solid-state drive or a hard drive of
unknown capacity, and the 6-cell battery will be able to offer 8.5
hours of constant use.
Weight may be an issue with the
ThinkPad X130e, however - 3.93 lbs (1.78 kg) (with the six-cell
battery) is pretty heavy for an 11.6” machine. The durability
features may be worth the extra weight, though. Lenovo will make the
X130e available on December the 20th, starting at
$469. We don't know if these will be available for the general public
to readily purchase, but hopefully they will be. See the press
UPDATE: You can now read more about and purchase the ThinkPad X130e here