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This week in laptops

Laptop news and reviews for March 3 through March 8, 2008.


There was plenty of laptop news in this week before our clocks spring forward, so let's get right to it.

We discovered two ways to ruin your brand-new MacBook Air: either coat it with gold and crystals (to the tune of $40,000) or take it apart. Meanwhile, Steve Wozniak doesn't want to ruin his MacBook Air, he just wants to know what to do with it.

Intel announced a new supersmall processor and platform called Atom, designed for "netbooks" and mobile Internet platforms. The energy-efficient chips aren't expected to hit the market for several weeks, but at least one site has posted some preliminary benchmarks. The chipmaker also introduced the official branding for the next iteration of its mobile platform, formerly codenamed Montevina: the highly creative Centrino 2.

Other products announced this week: the rugged Dell Latitude XFR D630 and the snow-white MSI PR200 Crystal Collection. At the CeBIT Expo, Clevo unveiled two new gaming models and Asus announced the 17-inch G70. Products we reviewed this week include the latest edition of the MacBook Pro and the powerhouse 15-inch Alienware Area-51 m15x gamer.

On Crave, Mike Yamamoto marvels at HP's artist series laptops and wondered if a laptop could reduce air pollution. Matt Elliott spotted a larger Eee PC with a 9-inch screen. Meanwhile, CNET Labs' Daniel Begun answered a question that I am asked pretty regularly: How do you find a quiet laptop?

Finally, business travelers should be mindful of their Wi-Fi connections at airports; apparently some hackers are setting up fake ad hoc networks to gain access to information stored on laptops.

Keep your eyes open, and have a great weekend!