With spec parity a given for most notebooks these days, innovations in batteries are one of the few areas that brands can use to differentiate themselves from one another. Case in point: The latest laptops from Asus, which will feature Sonata batteries from Boston-Power.
The new B series portables will join select HP laptops in offering the Sonata batteries, whose claim to fame is their superior ability to retain more of the charging capacity over time than conventional laptop batteries -- "triple the lifespan of typical notebook batteries," according to Asus. So after three years, they should retain 80 percent of their capacity per charge. They're also the only lithium ion batteries to earn a Nordic Ecolabel accreditation. Putting its money where its mouth is, Asus is offering a three-year warranty on the battery itself.
As for the rest of the B (for "business") lineup's specs, the four models will all run Intel Core processors, with the default CPU being the Core i5-520M. The B43J and B53J will also be available with a Core i7-620M processor. While the B53F comes with integrated Intel graphics, the other laptops feature an ATI Mobility Radeon 5470 graphics card; all sport LED-backlit displays. Less exciting are the mere 2GB of RAM included, as well as a smallish 320GB hard drive. Enterprise-friendly features include Intel's vPro, anti-theft, and trusted platform module technologies.
According to Engadget, the B53 models are now shipping, starting at $1,099, while pricing and availability of the B43 laptops have yet to be announced.