Vaio P Series… target market?
Sony teased us with a hidden website in December 2008 that stated,
“On the 9th of January you will change the way you look at laptops. Forever.”
The website was quickly removed. However, yesterday at CES, Sony unveiled the Vaio P Series notebook. Sony has something against the term netbook, they would rather market it as a new type of notebook. We think of it as an ultra-netbook. It’s reminiscent of the Vaio TX Series which in its day seemed like an absolutely minuscule laptop, but it did in fact have an 11” screen which is hefty compared to the standard 9” netbooks currently available. The P Series comes packed with an 8” LED backlit screen that’s been crammed with a 1600×768 resolution, 20% more pixels than you’ll find in a standard 15” laptop. Great for high quality video, not so great for text.
Why has Sony chosen to create a netbook/notebook with an 8” screen instead of a 9” screen? Without changing the dimensions of the laptop, it would in fact have roughly enough space for a 9” screen, however they’ve opted for an 8” screen and empty space. Could this be so they can take the title of the ‘world’s lightest 8” notebook’?
The P Series doesn’t come with a standard 1.6GHz Intel Atom processor, it instead comes with a 1.33GHz Intel Atom Z processor, a 60GB HDD or 128GB SSD, 2GB RAM upgradable to 4GB as well as 3G, GPS, WiFi and Bluetooth. The standard battery will give you roughly 4 hours of battery whereas the extended battery will bump the life to 8 hours. It also comes with a nipple instead of a trackpad, similar to that which you’d find on a Thinkpad.
This competes with Asus’ most luxurious netbook, the Eee PC S101 which costs roughly £400 and is arguably prettier than Sony’s entry. What’s more, the P Series will set you back £850 in the UK. Whereas in the US it costs $899, at the current exchange rate that’s £592. Rip-off Britain? The P Series also comes with Vista instead of XP, this might affect performance adversely.
This is a interesting/strange entry from Sony, who might this be targeted at, it’s not small enough to fit in your pocked but much too small for constant use. Maybe the well-paid businessman with extremely sharp eyesight, a small suitcase and a weak arm?