Dell has just announced a new line of seven Latitude laptops catering to professionals. The big claim is hugely improved battery life: the Direct2Dell blog claims that "some configurations can get up to 19 hours."
This improvement seems to come from a duo of factors. On one hand, Dell is offering batteries in cells numbering to the nonuple. On the other, they are now building into the BIOS of every system their new Dell Latitude ON system, which seems remarkably similar to Splashtop (perhaps even licensed by them). What Dell Latitude ON does is allow people to instantly boot into a smaller OS embedded on the BIOS chip, capable of launching typical programs like Firefox and Skype without actually booting up Vista. I'm extrapolating that that "19 hour" battery life figure comes from a combination of both the 9-cell battery and only dinkering around in ON.
In addition, the new Latitudes will come in configurations offering fingerprint readers, built-in disk encryption, smartcard readers, 802.11N, mobile broadband, Bluetooth 2.1, etc, with screen sizes ranging from 12 to 15.4 inches. Prices start at $1,200 for the higher end models, with the smaller sized Latitudes still having no price.
Not bad, Dell. But where's the E Mini-Inspiron?
New Dell Latitude Notebooks: No More Business as Usual [Direct2Dell]