Fujitsu brings a new lightweight to market

Adding to its artillery of mobile products, Fujitsu has introduced the fifth generation of its convertible tablet PC along with a 12.1-inch LifeBook that the company says is the slimmest and lightest on the market.

Paul Moore, Fujitsu’s senior director of mobile product marketing, refered to the 1 kg. (2.2 lb.), 19 mm (three-quarter inch) thick Q2010 as “the Montblanc pen and Movado watch of notebooks.”

“The trend is moving towards more stylish, fashionable mobile notebooks, but they still have to be powerful,” said Moore.

The LifeBook Q2010, which is capable of running Windows Vista, uses an Intel Core Solo ultra low voltage processor, has 1 GB of memory and up to 80 GB hard drive.

Other features include a wide-range of connectivity options including Intel PRO/wireless 3945ABG network connection (tri-mode 802.11a/b/g) with VoIP capabilities, optional integrated Bluetooth v2.0 and extended battery options that offer up to seven hours of power.

Also built into the Q2010 is the Fujitsu Shock Sensor complete with G-Force accelerometers to protect data in the event of sudden motion or vibration. “When it feels vibration or shock, the heads are pulled away from the drive,” said Moore.

For security, the notebook has a built-in biometric fingerprint swipe sensor and an embedded TCG 1.2-compliant trusted platform module (TPM) to protect digital identification and data and used to authenticate users onto a network.

Pricing on the LifeBook Q2010 notebook starts at $2,259.

According to IDC analyst Eddie Chan, Fujitsu held 0.7 per cent of the mobility market share in this year’s first quarter.

“There’s an opportunity for Fujitsu to capture a product segment that reaches out to the market in the same vein as smart phones, this is what they’re trying to capitalize on,” said Chan. “They’re trying to associate the same appeal to the style conscious end user.”

He added that notebooks are transitioning beyond just a utilitarian approach and becoming more of “an extension of one’s persona, similar to a mobile device.”

“The Q2010 is pretty full featured but what will become challenging is the price point,” said Chan. “The value of mobility has come down over the last few years, so they’re only going to reach a certain segment of the population which is not mass market. But given the design aspects, and feature sets, that’s not what they’re targeting anyway.”

The LifeBook T4210 tablet PC is the fifth generation of Fujitsu’s convertible device. With a built-in modular bay that supports an optical drive or an additional battery, the T4210 also features a bi-directional display hinge, which enables turning the screen in both directions.

“It’s our best selling unit with a standard battery life of 3.5 hours or two batteries which can provide up to eleven hours,” said Moore. “The primary design was to allow people to take it into slate mode just like a tablet without giving up the keyboard. This also allows you to deploy to people who want a slate as well as a notebook.”

Features of the T4210 include Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC edition 2006, Intel Centrino Duo mobile technology, up to 100 GB hard drive, integrated Wi-Fi certified 802.11a/b/g wireless LAN, modem and Gigabit Ethernet.

The device also includes security capabilities such as fingerprint sensor, TPM 1.2, a dedicated Smart Card slot, security application panel, two-level hard drive password and a security lock slot.

Fujitsu currently doesn’t have a partner program for its more than 500 channel partners in Canada. “We do not have any restrictions on who can sell our products,” said Mary Pereyma, national sales manager at Fujitsu Canada.

The company’s distribution partners are Supercom, Synnex and Tech Data.

“These products allow VARs to put applications on and go out and make a profit on the product,” said Pereyma. “The devices offer great technology, the benefit of being multi-featured and we want people to use their creativity to use our product, to take the engineering concepts and add value to it. We think if we restrict it, we’re restricting the market.”

Pereyma added that the new tablet PC will continue Fujitsu’s market traction in horizontals such as sales force and field force automation, as well as in verticals like healthcare, consumer packaged goods and pharmaceuticals.

“Tablets are still a small piece of the overall portable PC market,” said IDC’s Chan. “It ranges from less than two per cent of the portable PC shipments in any given quarter in Canada.”

The LifeBook T4210 tablet PC starts at $2,281. Both the T4210 and the Q2010 are shipping now.

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