Dell's Latitude Z introduces wireless charging (w/ Video)September 30th, 2009 by Lin Edwards in Technology / Consumer & Gadgets
(PhysOrg.com) -- Dell has introduced its new ultra-thin Latitude Z laptop with the world's first wireless laptop battery charger.
The laptop is just over half an inch (14.5 mm) thick and weighs 4.5 lb (2 kg), which according to Dell makes it the world's thinnest and lightest laptop. The soft touch finish and soft touch keyboard are aimed to give the user a feeling of luxury.
The optional wireless charger uses coils in the laptop and in a separate induction charging stand to produce an electromagnetic field that charges the battery. The induction stand is huge, and takes the same amount of time to charge the battery as an ordinary connection to the mains.
The laptop features a 16-inch high definition LCD display and a trackpad that supports hand gestures to zoom in and out. Another interesting feature is the "Edge Touch" frame surrounding the screen, that allows you to open applications such as email and the (optional) webcam by sliding your finger up the frame.
The webcam is a two-megapixel camera that doubles as a scanner. Simply hold your document in front of the camera lens, and you can save it as a pdf, or scan a business card and save the details in Microsoft Outlook.
The Latitude Z has several new security features. The webcam has a face-recognition system, and when it is turned on and you leave, it recognizes that you've gone and automatically locks the system to prevent unauthorized use. You can also lock the computer via a built-in contact-free smart card reader that locks the computer when you hold your office smart card over it. There is also a fingerprint reader. These and many of the other features are aimed squarely at business users.
The Latitude Z has a fast "Latitude On" mode that boots up in under one second and gives you access to the Internet, email, your contacts and calendar, but does not allow access to other applications such as word processing or presentations. This is similar to pre-boot systems in other laptops, but Latitude On uses a different processor to the normal boot up, allowing the battery to last up to 12 hours, according to Dell. A special power button switches the system to normal Windows mode.
A wireless docking station based on Ultrawideband technology is also available as an optional extra. This device allows you to connect the laptop wirelessly to USB devices such as printers, mouse and monitors, and to TVs, which may be handy if you plan to watch Internet content on your television. The peripherals are connected to the docking station instead of the computer.
The price tag for the new laptop starts at around $2000, but the webcam, wireless induction charging stand and wireless docking station are all optional extras.
More information: Dell Latitude Z
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"Dell's Latitude Z introduces wireless charging (w/ Video)." September 30th, 2009. http://phys.org/news/2009-09-dell-latitude-wireless-video.html