Lenovo is taking another swing at the MacBook Air. Having discontinued their X300 ultraportable line, Lenovo seemed content to compete at the 11" and 12" form factor, without sitting a horse at the popular but Air dominated 13.3" form factor. But a listing on a Swiss computer distributor's site leaked and documents released on the Lenovo channel distributors' site confirmed that the ThinkPad purveyor is planning to take on the Air with a 21.5 mm thick ultraportable notebook called the X1. 
While not quite as thin as the much hailed MBA, the X1 packs impressive specifications, especially for a device targeted at those of us used to sacrificing performance for lightweight. Headlining the device is a 2.5GHz Core i5-2520M CPU, the same processor as can be found in the 34.6 mm thick X220. Let me say that again, Lenovo managed to grow the screen and pack the same processor into a device one third less thick. A 13.3" 1366 x 768 Gorilla Glass screen, 160GB SSD, 8GB of RAM, an SDXC card reader and the excellent keyboard and build quality we've come to expect from the ThinkPad line round out the specifications. But that's not all.

Earlier today, Lenovo released slides from a distribution webinar that reveals that the X1 will sport a new type of battery which promise significant improvements in stamina and charging speed. Lenovo claims an 80% charge in just 30 plugged in minutes, for the sealed battery. This battery technology is expected to be included in all their future ultraportable notebooks including the previously announced Edge 220s and 420s, and the X1 is rated at 5 hours of use between charges. And there's one more thing.
In the same slide discussing the new warranty policies regarding these new batteries, Lenovo reveals that the battery tech will be included in the X Slate - presumably Lenovo's upcoming Honeycomb based tablet offering.
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  • mmsmsy - Tuesday, April 26, 2011 - link

    I'm not very enthusiastic about this Lenovo product. It definitely is great to see a laptop so thin and light with standard voltage processor, but there are some important things to notice.
    First of all, just like the guys said, the non-replacable battery is a pain if you use your laptop heavily, because you can't fit a charged one when the laptop is dying during a travel or sth and this notebook can't be used when you want to charge it because of the temperatures and thus it will be less usefull or the battery will wear out quicker, no matter what Lenovo says. Claims about great charging the battery in just 30 minutes to 80% is probably also not so great, because it houses only 38Wh battery if I'm not mistaken.
    Secondly, does anyone know if the internals will be accesible? 160GB SSD is very nice to see, but personally I prefer at least 250GB of storage to use my computer comfortably and I would like to swap the disk for a bigger one in some time.
    Last, but not least, with this thickness it will definitely be at least quite warm or noisy and the price is staggering.
    Taking all that into account I would certainly sacrifice a little lightness and super thin design for removable battery and access to the internals. Add to this that I would never pay 3000$ for a laptop...
    So, to sum up, I'd like to see more a review of Toshiba Portege R830/835 (I don't know the difference yet, but only 830 is available) with the same processor and 66Wh 6-cell battery (9-cell is also available) instead of overpriced and overengineered Lenovo X1. It even has a DVD drive... Really would love to see what it's worth with details. Especially because it is available now in my local store for about 900$ with i5-2410M. Even with one of the new Vertex 3 250GB and faster processor is waaaaay cheaper than X1. Thanks for reading to the end and hope this product will be reviewed :P
  • JasonInofuentes - Wednesday, April 27, 2011 - link

    I too am excited to see a review of the R830, and am also interested in seeing just how the X1 addresses your concerns, but I would hold off on judging based on price. Why didn't I quote price in the article? Pricing between national markets rarely make any sense. You can't compare the price of a device in Switzerland from the same device in the US or China.

    Either way, can't wait to hear your thoughts once this is reviewed.
  • TEAMSWITCHER - Thursday, May 12, 2011 - link

    The 13" MacBook Air is still superior. The 13" screen on the Air has much higher resolution, and the nvidia integrated graphics easily beats Intel graphics. And the MacBook Air is half the cost. Game, Set, Match, Apple.
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