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Brier Dudley's blog

Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

January 6, 2009 at 10:05 AM

CES: New PCs and phones surfacing, ahead of show crowds and Apple news

Companies always jockey for attention just before the Consumer Electronics Show, but there’s extra incentive for PC and phone makers to play that game this year: The timing of Apple’s keynote at Macworld today.

Here’s a sample of the products announced Monday and today, starting with a new slider phone announced today by HTC, the Taiwanese manufacturer with U.S. headquarters in Bellevue.

The S743 is like the company’s hit HTC Touch Diamond, but without the touch — it has a slide-out Qwerty keyboard instead. But it still has the diamond-back design so nobody will tell the difference when you’re making calls. It’s 1.7 inches wide with a 2.4-inch display and powered by Windows Mobile 6.1, so perhaps it will appear on stage during Steve Ballmer’s keynote.

S743.jpg

Chinese PC maker Lenovo introduced several intriguing new PCs, including an all-in-one iMac challenger and a nifty dual-screen laptop. The latter has a slide-out secondary screen, perfect for keeping email going while you work on the 17-inch main screen, but you’ll have to be really productive to justify the $3,663 base price.

Here’s the all-in-one A600, which goes on sale in April with a base price of $999. In addition to a 21-inch 1080p display and Media Center features, the system has an (optional) motion sensing remote control that can be used for games similar to the Wiimote. The “4-in-1” remote also works as a VOIP handset, controls Vista Media Center and works as a “air mouse” to control the cursor, Lenovo said.

A600_05.jpg

Here’s a Lenovo video demonstrating the dual-screen W700ds laptop, which it calls a “mobile workstation”:

Hewlett-Packard jumped in today with several new notebooks, including a new “Mini” netbook aimed at business and education customers. The Mini 2140 has a 10-inch screen and an Atom processor and runs Windows Vista:

HPMini2140FrontOpenView-Compressed.jpg

The 2.6-pounder also has gigabit Ethernet and a 160 gigabyte drive, with the option of an 80 gig solid-state drive.

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