Asus shows off super-thin B9440 and Zenbook 3 Deluxe notebooks


— 8:48 AM on January 5, 2017

Lenovo's recently-announced Thinkpad Carbon X1 laptops are seriously light at 2.5 lbs. The engineers at Asus probably took those figures as a worst-case scenario for the new AsusPro B9440 business laptop, which crams an Intel Kaby Lake seventh-generation Core i5 or Core i7 CPU, 8GB or 16GB of RAM, up to 512GB of SSD storage, and a 1080p display into a 2.3 lbs (1 kg) package.

Photo from Engadget

Asus builds the AsusPro B9440 out of a magnesium alloy rather than the carbon-fiber material Lenovo uses in its thinnest Thinkpads. The laptop is only 12.6" wide, making it a bit more compact than the 13" MacBook Air. The B9440's thin profile means it needs to sacrifice some ports, so road warriors won't be able to natively connect to Ethernet networks or crusty old VGA-only projectors. Still, the B9440 offers a pair of USB Type-C ports and an audio jack.

Business-specific features include a fingerprint reader for security and a spill-resistant keyboard that should help the laptop survive a run-in with a cup of single-origin Kopi Luwak. Engadget says that AsusPro B9440 systems will start at $1,000 and ship in May.

The company also updated its Zenbook 3 Deluxe ultrabook by replacing the single USB Type-C connector with a pair of Thunderbolt 3 ports. The Zenbook 3 Deluxe keeps the Kaby Lake CPUs and other goodies from the previous Zenbook 3. Prospective buyers can now order the Zenbook 3 Deluxe can with up to 1TB of SSD storage, too.

 
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