Tech Industry

Notebook at 2 pounds, $2,000

Panasonic's ultraportable comes with a 120-MHz Pentium MMX processor and an 8.4-inch active-matrix LCD screen.

Panasonic announced a new ultraportable notebook weighing in at just over 2 pounds.

The CF-M31 features a 120-MHz Pentium MMX processor, an 8.4-inch active-matrix LCD screen, and a 1.6GB hard drive for an estimated retail price of $1,999. It also offers external ports to hook up peripherals like a monitor, keyboard, or mouse.

The line between handheld and notebook computers is blurring as Windows CE devices get bigger, and notebooks like the Panasonic CF-M31 get smaller and lighter.

Sub-notebooks like the CF-M31 are able to run the more robust Windows 95 operating system, but their diminutive keyboard size can make extensive typing or data entry a challenge. However, the Panasonic CF-M31 features a trackball instead of the stylus that many sub-notebooks use to navigate, which Panasonic says aids usability.

The CF-M31 doesn't use a fan, but instead features a heat-dispersion design that the company says results in longer battery life. The ultra-portable system is targeted at the mobile professional.