Here’s a nice one for the early 2012 technology fairs: Asus will launch a new mini laptop named U32U in the first part of next year, according to a report from blogeee.net. The Asus U32U will have a 13.3 inch screen and will be powered by the AMD’s Zacate E-450 APU, which is the update for the E-350.
Basically, the E-450 is a dual core processor running at 1.65 GHZ “glued” together with on board HD Radeon 6320 graphics. What gives the E-450 an edge is the fact that it can temporarily increase the speed of the integrated video card, so you can get better visuals when playing games or watching HD content.
Besides that, the new platform is also said to have better power management, and the U32U will probably have a battery life of about 12 hours, which is more than what the best in the business can currently offer. Still, considering those numbers were probably obtained in factory testing, you’ll have to settle for a maximum of 10 hours in real life conditions.
The mini laptop comes with a 1366 x 768 panel with a matte finish, hopefully, while the finish on the lid and rest of the body seems to be plastic. The laptop comes with a minimum of 2 GB of RAM and can be upgraded to 4 GB, while storage options include either a 320 or 500 GB HDD. There’s no word if an SSD version will be available, but considering that the U32U is probably an entry level moonlighting mid range, an expensive SSD is not quite in the books.
As for ports, from a total of 3 USB ports, two are 3.0, sign that this standard is slowly becoming a norm, and you also get a HDMI port, card reader and audio jack. The laptop comes with Bluetooth 3.0 and WiFi N- no word about a 3G module and probably we’ll never get it on this one, because of the same reason we don’t have an SSD on it- to keep the price down.
The OS will be Windows 7 Home Basic, hint that this oversized netbook is aimed at casual users, looking for a machine to watch clips, surf the web and other basic tasks.
The U32U should have a base price of $509 and there’s no word about an actual release date or availability anywhere else than the US.
We’ll know more as the year ends, as the device will probably be formally launched during CES, in early January.