Feeds

Sony builds hot-swap GPU tech into ultra-portable laptop

Vaio Z debuts

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Sony's second key laptop introduction of the week is its 13in Vaio Z - not only a low-weight boy for business but also one of the first notebooks with seen with hot-switch graphics chips.

Like the Vaio FW, which was also launched this week, the Z series is based on Intel's Centrino 2 - the foundation for a raft of new notebooks unveiled of late.

Sony Vaio Z

Sony's Vaio Z: very portable and feature-rich

The Z's claim on our attention is the 1.5kg weight, 13.1in display - which, like the 16.4in display on the FW, has a 1600 x 900 resolution for a true 16:9 aspect ratio. It also has an LED backlight for power conservation.

You might not think the on-board Nvidia GeForce 9300M GS graphics chip did much for battery life and you'd be right. Which is why the Vaio Z has a switch just above the keyboard that powers it down and activates the second, chipset-integrated GPU instead - what Sony calls "Stamina mode", as opposed to "Speed mode".

Sony Vaio Z

Business friendly

Sony's done this kind of thing before, but here it works on the fly with no need for a re-boot. That said, it does do a kind of invisible restart, and you're warned that if you leave apps open while switching modes, you may lose your data.

The Z is no MacBook Air challenger on size, but it does win on features, packing in 802.11n, Bluetooth 2.0, a built-in DVD burner, a fingerprint reader, modem and Gigabit Ethernet ports, Firewire, an HDMI connector and a couple of USB ports. Then there's Intel's latest generation of mobile CPU and, on the top-of-the-line model, integrated 7.2Mb/s HSDPA 3G connectivity.

All this is encased in a carbon fibre shell.

The Vaio Z series members come with a three-year warranty. They'll be available any day now, but pricing was not disclosed.

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch
For decades Hollywood actually binned its 4K files. Doh!
Oi, Tim Cook. Apple Watch. I DARE you to tell me, IN PERSON, that it's secure
State attorney demands Apple CEO bows the knee to him
Apple's big bang: iPhone 6, ANOTHER iPhone 6 Plus and WATCH OUT
Let's >sigh< see what Cupertino has been up to for the past year
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Get your Indian Landfill Android One handsets - they're only SIXTY QUID
Cheap and deafening mobes for the subcontinental masses
Apple's SNEAKY plan: COPY ANDROID. Hello iPhone 6, Watch
Sizes, prices and all – but not for the wrist-o-puter
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.