15.1-inch TFT laptops are coming soon

With every new generation of LCD screen sizes on notebooks, most pundits say the upper limit has been reached.

However, UK portable specialist AJP Business Computers will next month become the first mobile PC maker to ship a unit with a remarkable 15.1-inch diagonal TFT LCD capable of at 1024 x 768 internal resolutions.

The screen is made by Hosiden but it is so far unclear whether many other PC vendors will accept the panel, which demands a case design even larger than that required for 14.1-inch screen notebooks, today's largest format for mainstream designs.

In the case of the AJP, sheer mass is also a key factor. The 8500 Series machine with the 15.1-inch screen weighs a whopping 4.6Kg. However, the large format also allows some advantages that the classic A4 notebook has had to do without, including a 101-key keyboard with numeric discreet keypad.

Available from mid-November the Series 8500 also offers up to 233MHz Pentium MMX processor; a bay that can accept Iomega Zip, 120Mb floppy, standard floppy or second hard drive; a CD-ROM drive bay that can also accept a DVD-ROM or magneto-optical drive; and 4Mb graphics RAM on a Chips and Technologies 65555 chipset.

A 200MHz Pentium MMX-based system with 32Mb RAM, 2.1Gb hard drive, 15.1-inch screen, 15-cell lithium ion battery, 3D sound, 2-watt speakers and two USB ports will cost around £2,500 from mid-November.

AJP: 0181-452 9090.

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