Lenovo makes some terrific laptop computers. When the company bought the ThinkPad brand from IBM ( IBM) a few years back, I was hoping that it would keep up the former owner's high standards. In short, it has. Lenovo has actually improved the ThinkPad laptop line-up and, at the same time, added its own branded line of laptops with different features. Everything I've been privileged to test since the takeover has been great. That's why I was so excited when Lenovo announced its version of an Asus Eee PC killer.
Lenovo calls the mini-notebook the S-10 "Ideapad." The first thing that differentiates the Ideapad from other small laptops is all the colors. In addition to glossy black or white, the Ideapad will also be sold in glossy pink, blue and red enclosures. If the "S" in S-10 stands for small, then the number 10 stands for the size of the screen. Actually, it's a 10.2-inch (diagonal) WSVGA, AntiGlare, TFT screen with an integrated, i.3 MP camera (1,024 by 600 pixels). The laptop's brain consists of a 1.6 GHz Intel ( INTC) Atom N270 Single Core processor. There's also an Intel Graphics Accelerator 950 chip inside, too. The computer has 512 MB of SDRAM (expandable up to 2 GB), an 80 GB hard drive (expandable to 160 GB), Microsoft Windows XP Home operating software, a 4-in-1 memory card reader. Ethernet, 802.11b/g Wi-Fi and Bluetooth complete the list. The S-10 measures 9.85 by 7.2 by 1.08 inches and weighs 2.3 pounds in its lightest configuration. A three-cell rechargeable battery is standard (figure as much as three hours of constant operation before needing recharging). There's a larger, optional six-cell battery pack that weighs more and offers nearly double the battery life. Built-in stereo speakers are a nice touch.