MicronPC adds fingerprint safeguards to Pentium 4 notebook

MicronPC adds fingerprint safeguards to Pentium 4 notebook

The three layers of biometric security built into the new TransPort GX3 notebook PC are the direct result of federal interest in security, MicronPC LLC portable product manager Jay White said yesterday.

'We looked at the requests for quotations and heard comments from federal buyers,' White said. 'Our No. 1 target market is government.' IRS auditors and other security-conscious users, for example, asked for 'standard removable hard drives that they could pull out every night and put in hotel safes,' he said.

Federal buyers also said they wanted all their existing peripherals'batteries, port replicators, drives and adapters'to stay compatible with the new 1.6- and 1.7-GHz Mobile Pentium 4 units released Monday.

A GX3 user initially has to register several fingerprints, in case of later injury. Fingerprint authentication is required not only to boot up the notebook but also to use stored passwords and to decrypt files. The hardware-software fingerprint sensor is the TouchChip from ST Microelectronics of Carrollton, Texas.

The TransPort GX3 looks like its predecessor, but the Pentium 4 CPU imposed 'very challenging thermal requirements,' White said. The Nampa, Idaho, PC maker added a better heat sink and a second fan. Carrying weight remains about the same: 7.2 pounds.

Federal buyers will pay $2,484 for a 1.7-GHz notebook with 256M of RAM, 20G hard drive, 8X DVD-ROM drive, 15-inch SuperXGA display, 32M graphics subsystem, 10/100-Mbps Ethernet card, 56-Kbps modem, three-year depot warranty, three user-configurable software launch buttons and Microsoft Windows XP Professional. An antenna is built in for IEEE 802.11b wireless connectivity.

Contact Micron federal sales at 800-249-1179.

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