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Sony is expanding its Vaio E series of laptops with a new 14-inch model that, while not quite worthy of ultrabook status with its 5-pound weight and 0.88-inch thickness, offers a distinctive design and a decent feature set. The company has used a flashy two-tone design for the chasis, with highlight color wrapping around the edges, and threw in features like a backlit keyboard and a large trackpad into the mix.
In terms of specs, the Vaio E Series 14P comes with a 2.3GHz Sandy Bridge Intel Core i3-2350M processor, 4GB of RAM, AMD Radeon HD 7670M discrete graphics, a LED-backlit 1366 x 768 display, 500GB hard drive, and up to seven hours of battery life. There's also a DVD burner and Sony has included a (rather gimmicky) gesture system that will let users control certain apps with hand movements in front of the camera.
Sony says you'll be able to swipe left or right to move through webpages or photo galleries, or do things like lowering your hand which pauses music playback, while rotational movements can increase or decrease music volume. At this stage the feature only works with Windows Media Player, IE9, PowerPoint and PowerDVD.
Connectivity and expansion features include Bluetooth 4.0 and 802.11b/g/n radios, as well as a healthy amount of ports with two USB 3.0 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, and an HDMI connection.
No word on pricing yet or any plans to upgrade the 14P with Intel's soon-to-be-released Ivy Bridge chips.
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