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Mitsubishi shows 2.2-lb. notebook

The company plans to enter the U.S. market with a mini-notebook designed to compete with Toshiba's Libretto.

NEW YORK--Mitsubishi weighed in this week here at 2.2 pounds.

The company showed off a Pentium-based ultraportable called Amity CN designed to compete with Toshiba's recently announced Libretto mini-notebook.

The Amity CN may represent Mitsubishi's first offering for the PC market in the United States, where the company has been virtually invisible so far. Mitsubishi is also expected to market Net PCs, consumer PCs, servers, and high-end notebooks in the U.S. market either later this year or in 1998, but it will start out by targeting Toshiba's newest ultralite.

The Amity CN and the Libretto are priced nearly identically, at about $2,000. The Libretto is lighter, weighing less than two pounds. But the new Mitsubishi unit is faster with a 133-MHz Pentium chip where the Libretto uses a 75-MHz Pentium.

The new Mitsubishi unit is set to ship in September and was shown today at the company's PC Expo booth, along with several Windows 95 pen-based computers.

Both the Amity and the Libretto will compete with other ultraportable notebooks such as Hewlett-Packard's OmniBook 800, and Apple Computer's upcoming Powerbook 2400. Being so small, all of these machines will also compete with Windows CE handheld devices.

The Amity CN comes with a 1.2GB hard disk drive and 16MB of memory, expandable to 48MB. The subnotebook also has slots for two PC cards, and a 640-by-480, 7.5-inch LCD screen. The LCD is based on a proprietary, dual-scan technology for a better image than conventional dual scan screens. The Amity CN's onboard video supports 16-bit color. The subnotebook also contains an IrDA 1.1 infrared tranceiver for sending data to devices such as printers and desktop computers.

Like other subnotebooks, the unit's keyboard is smaller than that of standard-size notebooks, with 16 millimeter wide keys.