The unit is most at home when used to enter, store and share notes and concepts that might otherwise be kept in handwritten format. In fact, measuring just 11.6 by 9.2 by 1.2 inches and tipping the scales at a scant 4.1 pounds, the Portégé 3500 is as comfortably portable as a conventional paper-based notepad. Users input data in one of two ways--either by sketching directly on the swiveling, double-duty 12.1-inch poly-silicon TFT color LCD (maximum resolution 1024x768) or via an 84-key keyboard.
Though the Portégé 3500 is not as powerful as a comparably priced notebook, it is faster than many competing tablets. Featuring a 1.33 GHz Intel Pentium III processor-M with enhanced SpeedStep technology for improved battery life, 256 MB SDRAM memory (expandable to a whopping 1024 MB), and a Trident CyberALLADIN-T graphics controller with 16 MB external memory, the unit will easily handle most day-to-day mobile computing tasks and many 3-D apps too. Serious gamers or 3-D artisans should look elsewhere.
Connectivity amenities include an RJ-45 LAN port for network and online access, an RJ-11 modem port for low-speed e-communication, and integrated Wi-Fi compliant wireless LAN support. The system also sports a surprisingly large 40 GB hard disk and facilities for an external CD and/or DVD drive, a pair of ultra-fast USB 2.0 ports for plug and play peripherals, an integrated TouchPad, 12 function keys, a speaker and microphone and full 16-bit stereo sound. Battery life is estimated at 3.5 hours under ideal conditions.