The P-series Lifestyle PC is one of the smallest laptops we've seen; it is almost similar to a UMPC, but with a traditional clamshell laptop design. The widescreen 8-inch 1600x768 display and tiny keyboard form a shape that has roughly the same footprint as a standard white business envelope, and is less than 1-inch thick, weighing 638g.
To fit a reasonably full-featured PC into a chassis this small, some sacrifices had to be made, and we're worried the lack of a standard touch pad (instead there's a ThinkPad-like nipple), will keep this new system from being as useful as it could be. It does, however, include a 3G mobile broadband antenna, 802.11n Wi-Fi, GPS, and Bluetooth.
Like several other laptops we've seen recently, there's a pre-Windows instant-on operating system, which uses the familiar Sony cross-media bar menu found on the PlayStation 3 and handheld PSP consoles. Once you boot into Windows, instead of the XP variety found on most netbooks, it has Vista, although the 2GB of RAM (up to 4GB capacity) should help it run smoothly.
Sony told us it was planning on marketing this almost clutch-size laptop specifically to women in the US, but we didn't take this seriously until we saw these lines in the official press release:
"Designed for the fashionista in all of us, it's the ideal companion..." "The spacing between keys has also been engineered to help reduce typing mistakes making it perfect for long fingernails."
The P-series Lifestyle PC will start at £849, appearing in a variety of colours, including garnet red, emerald green, onyx black, crystal white, and classic (matte) black, with matching accessories including a fitted leather case.
There will be a version called the VGN-P19WN/Q with a 128GB solid state hard drive that you can only order from www.sonystyle.co.uk. Standard 60GB hard drives appear on the other two configurations available, the VGN-P11Z and VGN-P19WN/Q. It will be available from February. Click continue above to see more photos.