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Sharp to launch Kitty notebook in Japan

Sharp Electronics is to release a new notebook in Japan this month powered by Transmeta's Crusoe processor.

The official name of the notebook will be the Mebius Muramasa PC-MM1-H1W, though for consumer purposes Sharp is using the name "Sharp Kitty."

The notebook will be wedge-shaped, measuring 13.7 millimetres deep at the front and 19 millimetres at the back, and weighs in at 950 grams. The features of the machine have been geared toward business and small/home office users, according to a source familiar with Sharp's plans.

Based on Transmeta's TM5800 Crusoe chip running at 867MHz, the notebook will run Microsoft's Windows XP Home Edition and contain a 15Gbyte hard drive. It will also include 256Mbytes of Double Data Rate Synchronous Dynamic RAM, two USB 1.1 ports, one PC Card slot, a built-in 802.11b wireless network adapter and a 10.4-inch XGA screen.

The notebook's battery life will be 3.2 hours, although an optional extra battery can stretch that to 9.5 hours. A new docking feature will allow users to connect the notebook to a second PC and synchronise storage data while the system is in hibernate or stand-by mode.

Sharp Kitty is scheduled to be available in stores in Japan from 26 October and will cost around ¥170,000 (£878). The notebook will be released in the USA in the first quarter of 2003, according to the source.

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