Subnotebook Battle Heats Up
The fight for market share in the mini-notebook market segment is heating up. At a company event in San Francisco, Dell released two new entries the E4200 and E4300. The E4200 is a 12-inch, 2.2 lb "ultra-portable" laptop that is the lightest in the company's history.
The mini-notebook market has been catching steam during the last year and is largely dominated by Asus, Hewlett-Packard and Everex. The new Dell machine, however, is lighter that Apple's MacBook Air, an extremely thin machine that has attracted a lot of buzz since its release. So it's a bit unclear who Dell is actually targeting with its new entries. The new machines use solid-state drives, which are judged more durable than traditional battery life. Dell also claims the new machines can operate for up to 19 hours on battery, although this requires an add-on device called Battery Slice.
Such machines are growing more popular with mobile professionals who seek convenient,easy Internet access, Web surfing and basic functionality. They are finding a home in the SMB market, which makes them an add-on sale for many VARs. The latest Dell entries will increase the competition among vendors vying for dominance in this market, which should lower prices and improve the technology offerings.