Give up on that mythical iTablet for a minute and feast your eyes on the Archos 9 ($625; Fall 09). This thin (0.63'') netbook/tablet PC device sports a 9-inch touchscreen and runs Windows 7. Powered by an Intel ATOM Z515 processor, the Archos 9 features an 80GB hard drive, webcam, Bluetooth, optical trackpoint, Wi-Fi, built-in speakers, and optional 3G wireless.
Apple completes the family and ties the tubes with the introduction of an all new MacBook Pro lineup today. The MacBook Pro Aluminum Unibody Family ($1,200-$2,500) gains a 13-inch kid, while the 15-inch and 17-inch models get upgrades across the board. All models now have up to 40% longer battery life thanks to a built-in notebook battery that lasts seven hours on a charge. The family also shares LED-backlit displays with better color, the Multi-Touch trackpad, an illuminated keyboard, a new SD card (13 and 15-inch) or ExpressCard slot (17-inch), a FireWire 800 port and new NVIDIA graphics. The whole family can be upgraded with up to 8GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive or a 256GB solid state drive. The 15-inch and 17-inch MacBook Pros can also be beefed up with a 3.06 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor.
Looking for a netbook that can handle the multimedia tasks of a normal notebook? Check out the Lenovo IdeaPad S12 ($450 and up; June 2009). Offered with the Nvidia ION graphics platform, the S12 can handle HD video playback, and sports a full-size keyboard, 160GB of storage, 1GB of RAM, a 12-inch, 1280 x 800 display, an Intel Atom processor, a 4-in-1 card reader, an ExpressCard slot, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, three USB ports, HDMI-out, and Windows XP.
The Dell Latitude E6400 XFR Laptop ($4,300) is a beast of a laptop, engineered to withstand the toughest environments. Thanks to Dell's Ballistic Armor Protection System, the XFR has 2-times the impact strength of magnesium alloy and a higher drop-tolerance than any other computer in its class. The proprietary PrimoSeal technology makes the XFR nearly impervious to dust, dirt, liquid, and wind. And this machine is as smart as it is tough, packing Intel Core 2 Duo processors, a fast charging battery, and a 14.1" impact-resistance LCD screen. IT management has never been so rugged.
Dell finally gets stylish with the Adamo (From $2,000). This slim and sexy notebook is milled from a single piece of aluminum and features a beautiful 13.4-inch edge-to-edge glass display and a sleek backlit keyboard. Powered by Intel Core 2 Duo processors, the Adamo runs the 64-bit Windows Vista Home Premium Edition SP1 and features Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and optional built-in mobile broadband, along with solid state drives and DDR3 RAM.
Can't decide between a new netbook or a tablet? How 'bout both. The Touch Book ($300; May 09) is an always-on netbook that utilizes a detachable keyboard and a 3D touchscreen user interface to make a quick transition to a tablet. Powered by an ARM processor from Texas Instruments, the Touch Book features a 1024 x 600 8.9-inch screen, an 8GB micro SD card for storage, Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n and Bluetooth, six USB 2.0 ports (both internal and external), and gives you 10 to 15 hours of battery life. It runs an open source Touch Book OS, but you can also install Google Android, Ubuntu, Angstrom, and Windows CE.
Tired of waiting on Apple to pump out a tablet MacBook Pro? Then grab yourself a ModBook Pro ($5,000 and up; pre-order). Based on the new Unibody MacBook Pro, this unique computing solution has been re-engineered to offer both pen and touch input, with Axiotron's Quicktouch interface enabling complete control over Mac OS X. Of course, it also packs all the tantalizing technology found in the normal MBP, including an Intel Core 2 Duo processor running at up to 2.8 GHz, up to 4GB of RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT graphics, FireWire 800, Mini DisplayPort, and more.
Jazz up your new MacBook or MacBook Pro with iamhuman MacBook Covers ($30-$45). Available in a variety of styles, including woodgrain, patterns, and prints, each cover is tailored to fit your specific model, made from quality fabrics and authentic wood veneers, and backed with pro-grade 3M adhesive so they won't leave a nasty residue when removed.
Few things could get us to use the hell that is Windows Vista. But this is one of them. Weighing in at just 1.4 pounds and about the size of business envelope, the Sony VAIO P ($900) is just the right mix of laptop, netbook and ultra-portable. It sports an 8-inch LED-backlit screen with an extra-wide 1600 x 768 resolution, built-in Verizon Wirless 3G Mobile Broadband, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, built-in webcam, and GPS. The VAIO P has a smart instant-on mode that launches directly into Sony’s Xross Media Bar interface for quick access to music, video, photos and the web while waiting for Vista to boot up. It'll be available in red, green, black, or white.
Just because you know something's coming doesn't make it any less cool. The new 17-Inch Unibody MacBook Pro ($2,800) features the same rock-solid unibody aluminum construction as its 15- and 13-inch brothers, but features a slew of upgrades, including a 17-inch 1920x1200 LED-backlit display, up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM, a 320GB hard drive standard with the option for a 256GB SSD, a Core 2 Duo processor running at speeds of up to 2.93 GHz, and a revolutionary new built-in battery that delivers up to eight hours of use and up to 1,000 recharges for more than three times the lifespan of normal laptop batteries. All that, in the world's lightest, thinnest 17-inch notebook? We'd say it was worth the wait.
This whole netbook thing may catch on yet. Sporting either an 8.9-inch or 10.2-inch Brightview display, the HP Mini 1000 ($400) is an Internet-centric, ultra-mobile laptop that weighs in at only 2.25 pounds. It's powered by an Intel Atom N270 1.6GHz processor, has 8GB or 16GB SSD, or 60GB HDD for storage, webcam, Wi-Fi (3G coming later), and a cool onyx-toned "swirl" imprint design.
Carved from a single piece of aluminum, the new Apple MacBook Pro ($2000-$2500) is the company's latest flagship laptop. Along with the new Unibody construction and black-rimmed, LED-backlit, glass-covered display is a new multi-touch glass trackpad, a new Mini DisplayPort connector, a new dual-chip graphics architecture that allows users to choose between the Nvidia GeForce 9400M processor for better battery life and the powerful Nvidia GeForce 9600M GT for higher performance, Intel Core 2 Duo processors running at up to 2.8GHz, up to 320GB of hard drive space with an option for a 128GB SSD, and more. The best just got a whole lot better.