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IBM Announces Design Milestone with Its First Transforming Notebook PC


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SOMERS, N.Y - 19 Apr 1999: -- IBM, the company that defined ultraportable computer design with such milestones as the ThinkPad 701C with a fold-out "butterfly" keyboard and ThinkPad 560, today unveiled its next-generation ultraportable PC, the ThinkPad 570. This powerful notebook PC is the first of a new breed of "transformer" systems that instantly converts from an all-in-one, desktop-replacement notebook PC into a thin and light ultraportable.(1).

"As more notebooks become the sole computers for business, users are torn between full-function models and ultraportables," said Adalio Sanchez, General Manager, IBM Mobile Computing. "Now they can enjoy the best of both worlds, without sacrificing performance or functionality."

In its ultraportable configuration, the one-inch-thin, four-pound ThinkPad 570 is a no-compromises notebook PC for road warriors. It features a full-size, full-stroke keyboard, 13.3- or 12.1-inch TFT display, Intel Mobile Pentium (R) II processors as fast as 366MHz, up to 6.4 GB(2) hard disk drive, 64MB RAM, 56K modem(3) and all standard ports. In an instant, the ThinkPad 570 transforms into a modular, all-in-one desktop replacement notebook PC by attaching it to the UltraBase, an elegantly designed bottom base that houses optional accessories for a variety of system configurations.

The UltraBase transforms the ThinkPad 570 into an entirely different machine, allowing users to custom-configure it with a variety of optional devices, such as a 2X DVD-ROM drive, 24X-10X CD-ROM drive, Zip 100MB drive, SuperDisk (LS-120) drive, additional hard drive (providing up to 16.4GB of storage) or second battery that provides up to seven hours of battery life without recharging(4). ThinkPad 570 UltraBase devices are compatible with the UltraslimBay of the popular ThinkPad 600 series notebooks, providing the flexibility to easily swap components. The UltraBase is equipped with stereo speakers, a MIDI port and an additional USB port, and provides a direct connection to an optional port replicator.

The ThinkPad 570 is designed for mobile professionals who need to stay productive both on the road and in the office. The ThinkPad 570 line is optimized for performance with Intel(R) Mobile Pentium(R) II processors at speeds of 366, 333 and 300MHz(5), support for Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) and integrated software-enabled DVD (with optional UltraBase and DVD Drive). ThinkPad 570 models ship with Microsoft Windows 98, Windows 95 or Windows NT. Advanced Windows NT (R) Workstation functionality includes full power management, resume on ring and Hot Plug PC Card support.

The ThinkPad 570 UltraCarbon casing is based on a carbon fiber-reinforced plastic developed by IBM Researchers that is the lightest and most durable composite material available in the marketplace today. A derivative of carbon fiber composites used in sporting goods equipment, the UltraCarbon casing results in a thinner walled, higher-strength unit that enables efficient heat dissipation and room for high-performance internal components such as the latest Intel processors, large IBM hard drives and long-life batteries. Beneath its rugged exterior, the IBM ThinkPad 570 has a full-sized, full-stroke keyboard, an ergonomically designed palm rest and IBM's TrackPoint pointing device with Internet Scroll Bar and magnifying functions to help users breeze through spreadsheets and Web pages.

Because battery life is crucial to notebook PC users, the ThinkPad 570 was designed using IBM's Portable Power Analysis and Recording Tool (PoPART), which monitors processor power changes, activity and the use of the display and disk drive. PoPART results were time stamped, stored and analyzed to produce a power profile of the system, enabling ThinkPad 570 engineers to maximize power usage throughout the entire design cycle. As a result, ThinkPad 570 users enjoy up to seven hours of battery life with an optional second Li-Ion battery ($209) housed in the UltraBase. In its ultraportable configuration, the system provides up to three hours or more of standard battery life.

The Access ThinkPad feature keeps ThinkPad 570 users up and running with customizable help that works within the Windows 98 Active Desktop. Norton Mobile Essentials simplifies setting up software, hardware and connectivity for instant productivity in locations around the world. The ThinkPad 570 also comes standard with Norton AntiVirus, ConfigSafe and Update Connector, which automatically keeps the user's system protected and up-to-date with the latest drivers and software upgrades.

IBM offers a variety of optional peripherals designed to lower total cost of ownership and make it easier to upgrade and deploy new systems. The UltraslimBay CD-ROM ($135), DVD-ROM ($335), SuperDisk (LS-120) drive ($225), and Zip100MB ($269) components for the ThinkPad 570 are compatible with the ThinkPad 600. The ThinkPad 570 with the UltraBase provides a direct connection to an optional IBM Port Replicator ($155) or Port Replicator with EtherJet(TM) ($395) which are also compatible with the ThinkPad 560, 380 and 390. The ThinkPad 570's new UltraSlim AC Adapter, 25% smaller and lighter than previous models, is also available as an option ($69) for other current ThinkPad systems. The ThinkPad 570's user-upgradable memory and hard disk require no special tools.

The ThinkPad 570 is protected by a three-year limited warranty and IBM's industry leading service and support solutions, including 12-hour in-depot repair service and optional online, automated data backup and recovery services. IBM has business operations in 164 countries with a 24x7(6) HelpCenter and Remote Technical Support ServicePac program, which provides access to experienced HelpCenter specialists.

IBM ThinkPad 570 prices start at $2,699; the UltraBase is $119 (7).

The ThinkPad 570 is being unveiled today in an Internet broadcast at http://webevents.broadcast.com/ibm/thinkpad0499. For more information on the ThinkPad 570, visit http://www.pc.ibm.com/us/thinkpad or call 800-426-7255 ext. 4212.

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IBM and ThinkPad are trademarks of IBM Corporation. Intel and Pentium are registered trademarks of Intel Corporation. Microsoft, Windows and Windows NT are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. Other company, product and service names may be trademarks or service marks of their respective owners. PCs referenced herein ship with an operating system.

(1) As of 4/19/99 compared against specific models: Toshiba Portege 7010/7020, Compaq Armada 3500, Hewlett-Packard OmniBook 900 and Fujitsu Lifebook L460

(2) GB equals one billion bytes when referring to hard disk drive capacity

(3) Designed to be capable of receiving at up to 56kbps with x2 or V.90 compatible phone line and server equipment, and transmitting at up to 31.2 kbps. Public networks currently limit download speeds to about 53kbps. Actual speeds vary and are often less than the maximum.

(4) Results based on BAPCo's (Business Applications Performance Corporation) SYSmark benchmark test. Battery life will vary based on many factors including screen brightness, applications, features, battery conditioning, power management and other customer preferences.

(5)MHz only measures microprocessor internal clock speed, not application performance. Many factors affect application performance.

(6) May exclude certain holidays. HelpCenter response times may vary

(7) All prices quoted are estimate reseller prices to end users. Actual reseller prices may vary.