Lenovo may plan Atom-powered ThinkPad X100e

The ThinkPad X100e Lenovo sells right now doesn't really fit the description of a netbook, what with its 11.6" display, Athlon Neo processor, and full-featured edition of Windows 7. As Engadget reports, however, a Lenovo support page suggests a more netbook-like version of the laptop is on the way.

Lenovo has since pulled the incriminating hints from the support page, but we caught it beforehand, when the page still mentioned an Atom N450 processor and a 10.1" display with a 1280x720 resolution. Those specs figured alongside the current Athlon Neo MV-40 and 11.6" 1366x768 display. (You can see a screenshot over at Netbooknews.de.)

This information says nothing about a potential release schedule or pricing, of course. The current X100e starts at $449, so an Atom-powered version would presumably be substantially cheaper—otherwise, folks might be tempted to go with the more powerful offering. Then again, the Atom machine could have substantially better battery life. We got 9.4 hours of web surfing out of Asus' Eee PC 1005PE, longevity an AMD-powered laptop with more powerful integrated graphics would be very hard-pressed to match.

There's also the possibility that this is a simple error. After all, Lenovo already offers Atom-based netbooks, its IdeaPad S series, which start at $369 with 10.1" displays, Atom N450 processors, Windows 7 Home Basic, and 802.11n Wi-Fi.

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