Remember we said lots of PC makers were going to play it safe at this year's CES, introducing touchscreen versions of their existing laptops? That definitely applies to Lenovo: the company just announced four touch-enabled notebooks, and they all look pretty similar to its earlier offerings -- save for those touchscreens, of course.
First up, there's the IdeaPad U310 Touch and U410 Touch, which have the same industrial design as the U310 and U410 Ultrabooks, just with a little extra heft (the U310 is 3.85 pounds / 18mm thick; the U410, 4.4 pounds / 21mm thick). Other than that, the specs closely match the current U310 and U410: up to 4GB of RAM and 500GB of storage on the 13-inch model, and up to 8GB of memory and 1TB of space on the big guy. Both will be offered with a Core i7 processor, but only the 14-incher has a discrete NVIDIA GPU (the U310 gets by on Intel's integrated HD 4000 graphics). The U410 also offers four USB ports, while the U310 makes do with three. Finally, battery life is bound to differ: the U310 is rated for up to six hours, compared with eight on the U410. Whichever you choose, though, the screen resolution tops out at 1,366 x 768, and the hard drive can be paired with a 24GB SSD to help speed up boot times. The U310 will arrive in March starting at $779, while the U410 is slated to land in April with a starting price of $850.
Additionally, Lenovo announced two mainstream laptops, the 14-inch IdeaPad Z400 Touch and the 15-inch Z500 Touch. Unlike with the U310 and U410 Touch, the specs here are pretty consistent, other than the difference in screen size. Both measure about an inch thick, even with an optical drive on board. They'll be offered with Core i7 processors (standard voltage), a 2GB NVIDIA GT645M GPU, up to 8GB of RAM and up to 1TB of HDD storage. Additionally, they'll come standard with backlit keyboards and will be available with optional 1,600 x 900 displays -- both nice-to-have features, we'd say. The two laptops will start at $699, according to Lenovo, but the Z400 will arrive in March, while the Z500 is scheduled to ship in April.
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Lenovo IdeaPad U310 Touch and U410 Touch
Lenovo IdeaPad Z400 Touch and Z500 Touch
Lenovo IdeaPad U410 Touch hands-on
Lenovo IdeaPad Z400 and Z500 Touch hands-on