Sony intros VAIO S with Sandy Bridge, Radeon GPU, 1080p displayBy Matthew DeCarlo
Amid the flurry of Sony announcements from IFA today is a fresh addition to the company's laptop lineup. Sometime this October, Sony will launch a new 15.5-inch VAIO S notebook, bringing the popular ultraportable series to a larger form factor. The latest update is a continuation of the series-wide refresh introduced in May, which brought improved portability, performance and power efficiency courtesy of Intel's new Sandy Bridge platform.
The 15.5-inch iteration will be no different in that respect. Stated specifications include a second-gen Core i7 processor, Intel HD 3000 integrated graphics and an optional discrete Radeon HD 6630 1GB, up to 1TB of storage along with SSD and HDD combos, as well as a DVD or Blu-ray player. Units that ship with the AMD graphics chip will have some form of hybrid functionality that lets you switch between "Speed" and "Stamina" modes.
Unlike many 15-inchers, the new VAIO S will feature (or at least offer) a 1920x1080 display, providing tons of real estate for a mobile system. Despite its heftier frame, the machine will still measure under an inch thick and it'll weigh about 4.4lbs. That figure undoubtedly increases when you mount the optional $150 battery sheet, which boosts the maximum autonomy to 12 hours (suggesting the standard runtime should be around six hours).
The obligatory wireless connectivity is also present, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Intel's Wireless Display 2.1 technology. You'll also find an integrated microphone and HD webcam that ships with face tracking technology, Pricing will open at about $1,000, but you can expect to pay a premium for a flash drive or dedicated GPU. Sony's press release notes that the 13.3-inch will also receive more Sandy Bridge CPU options in October.