Sony Vaio Duo 11: Business Windows 8-Powered Convertible?
While Windows 8 may hardly appear to be the right operating system for a business, it seems like some PC manufacturers may be giving that formula a go anyway, and the product Sony is cooking up is sure to entice other users and enthusiasts as well. If PocketNow's images are legitimate, Sony is apparently designing a convertible machine with an 11” display, a slide-out keyboard, and a couple of noteworthy features.
As the photos show, the Vaio Duo 11 can be used as either a tablet or as a pseudo-laptop; the keyboard does not appear to be removable. As well, the keyboard is backlit and looks to have a Trackpoint pointing device (a small knob between the G, H and B keys; see the lower image for a better view) with three mouse buttons on the front lip, negating the need for a normal touchpad. Of course, the screen is touch sensitive, and that stylus will surely be bundled with the machine.
A side view reveals what looks like a VGA d-sub video output on the side of the machine. ARM-based systems haven't really offered such a port up to this point, so it may be that the Duo 11 will contain a full-fledged Intel Core i5 processor or similar within its slim chassis, running the full-fat version of Windows 8 instead of the scaled-down Windows RT. In any case, more details are sure to be revealed come the IFA 2012 consumer electronics show in Germany.
Personally I'm not too fond of the screen's angle after propping it up; it sure looks like one would be left with a sore back after an hour or so of desk usage. Hopefully Sony will implement a way to adjust this.
Postscript: Now available at Amazon.com and other retailers.