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Lenovo announces Sandy Bridge ThinkPads

New laptops offer better battery life

Lenovo has announced the first ThinkPad laptops running Intel's latest Sandy Bridge chips, which help make the PCs faster and more power-efficient than older models.

The company's new ThinkPad T, L and W laptops run on Intel's latest Core i3, i5 and i7 processors, which were officially announced earlier this year. The power-efficiency features on Intel's Sandy Bridge chips, combined with Lenovo's new power-saving features, have helped prolong battery life on the new laptops, said Preston Taylor, ThinkPad product marketing manager at Lenovo.

The ThinkPad T420, which includes a 14-inch screen, delivers up to 15 hours of battery life with a nine-cell battery, better than the 11 hours of its predecessor, Taylor said. The ultra-thin T420S, which also includes a 14-inch screen, offers six hours of battery life on a six-cell battery, but users can extend that to 10 hours by plugging an optional battery in the optical bay. The ThinkPad T and W laptops provide a 33-percent battery performance improvement over previous models.

The battery life of laptops is also boosted by Intel's Turbo Boost 2.0 chip feature, where inactive cores can be automatically shut down to preserve power. Performance on the processing cores can be dialed up in case extra performance is needed for tasks like video rendering, Taylor said.

Some laptops are also bundled with Intel's Core VPro hardware and software platform, which enables IT managers to remotely manage and secure laptops. Intel's anti-theft technology, which is bundled in VPro, allows IT managers to remotely disable stolen or lost laptops over wired, Wi-Fi or 3G networks. The laptops can be later reactivated through a code provided by the IT department. A GPS capability in the anti-theft feature also allows laptops to be tracked, and establish boundaries so laptops are kept within specific confines.

The new ThinkPads will become available worldwide in March and include dual- and quad-core Core i3, i5 and i7 processors running at clock speeds between 2GHz and 2.7GHz.

The ThinkPad T420 and T420S are priced at $1,029 and $1,399, respectively, in the US. The T520 comes with a 15.6-inch screen and is priced starting at $999. The laptops will support up to 8GB of RAM, and up to 320GB of hard drive storage.

The ThinkPad W520, which includes a 15-inch screen, is priced starting at $1,529. The desktop replacement laptop weighs 5.95 pounds (2.7 kilograms), and supports up 32GB of memory. The laptop includes USB 3.0 ports and multiple storage options.

The new lineup also includes the L420 and L520 laptops, which are priced starting at $899.


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