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November 03, 2006

Sony Intros World's Lightest Laptop in Japan

By Mae Kowalke, TMCnet Associate Editor

Sony recently announced plans to start selling what it claims is the world’s lightest laptop computer, dubbed “type G” Vaio.
The laptop will be available in Japan this December for about $1,881, Reuters reported Oct. 31. It weighs in at 898 grams (just shy of 2 lbs.) and features a 12.1-inch LCD screen and 12.5 hour battery life.

Sony Senior Vice President Yoshihisa Ishida said at a recent press conference that the recent laptop battery recalls are expected to have little impact on the company’s personal computer (PC) operations, Reuters reported.

Just how “little” the battery recall will turn out to be remains uncertain. The headaches for Sony started August 14 when computer manufacturer Dell (News - Alert) announced the recall of 4.1 million laptop batteries made by Sony because of their potential under certain conditions to overheat and catch on fire.
Several other laptop manufacturers followed suit, including Apple (recall of more than a million laptop batteries in late August), Toshiba (News - Alert) (recall of 830,000 batteries Sept. 29), and Hitachi (recall of 16,000 batteries Oct. 6).
As of October 19, the number of Sony laptop batteries recalled was estimated at 9.6 million.
Sony may be hoping that its latest Vaio laptop will help overcome the losses incurred by the battery recalls. The company has set a goal of selling 4.2 million units of Vaio PCs between now and March, 2007, Reuters said.
This latest laptop is part of Sony’s bid to boost its presence among Japanese business users, XINHAU News Online said in a report Friday. Sony has no current plans to offer the laptop overseas.
Mae Kowalke previously wrote for Cleveland Magazine in Ohio and The Burlington Free Press in Vermont. To see more of her articles, please visit Mae Kowalke’s columnist page. Also check out her Wireless Mobility blog.

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