Lenovo Launches IdeaPad S10 Netbook

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China’s Lenovo has decided to enter the so-called “netbook” market for small, highly-portable notebook computers centered around accessing and using the Internet and using digital media. Lenovo is pitching the S10 both to first-time computer users and as a complement to an experienced computer user’s main computer: leave the horsepower at home, and take the S10 with you to check email, access to the Web, and handle your music and photo library.

“IdeaPad netbooks are the latest in a string of recently announced Lenovo products, designed specifically for consumers worldwide and developed through our heritage of technological innovation and exceptional engineering,” said Lenovo Consumer Business Group senior VP Liu Jun, in a statement.

Lenovo plans to offer the S10 in two configurations, one with 512 MB of RAM and an 80 GB hard drive, and the other with 1 GB of RAM and a 160 GB hard drive. The units will sport Intel Atom processors, a 10.2-inch LEC backlist display, a 4-in-1 media card reader, two USB ports, an integrated Web cam, and Wi-Fi wireless connectivity. Interesting, the S10’s will also feature and ExpressCard slot for wireless broadband capability. To save space, Lenovo has shrunk down the keyboard so it takes up about 85 percent of the space of a regular notebook PC keyboard. The IdeaPad S10’s will ship with Windows XP—you know, the operating system Microsoft has repeatedly tried to send off into the sunset, only to grudgingly grant exemptions for these sort of ultra low-end systems.

Lenovo says the IdeaPad S10 should start shipping in October with prices starting at $399.