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.