Intel shows 0.7-inch-thick notebook prototype

BusinessWeek has the skinny (and a number of pictures) on an Intel notebook concept that's purportedly the thinnest laptop ever built. The machine, which was co-designed by Intel engineers and a Portland, Oregon design firm called Ziba Design, has a thickness of only 0.7" (18mm). That's just enough to accommodate a single horizontal USB port, and it's about as thin as Motorola's Razr cell phone. Intel's prototype—code-named Metro—also weighs in at just 2.25lbs (1.02kg), despite having features some might consider luxuries: a secondary LCD display embedded into the back of the main display shell, a fingerprint reader, and even a noise-canceling microphone for those Skype calls on the move.

According to BusinessWeek, the Metro prototype "may line the shelves of a retailer before long." The magazine says Intel hasn't announced an official release date yet, but that "people familiar with the matter" say an unnamed PC maker intends to start manufacturing the system later this year. (Thanks to Engadget for the tip.)

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