A new business-class laptop has just made an unannounced appearance on Dell's U.S. product pages. The Latitude E4310 ultraportable laptop will be available in a choice of Core i5 processors, the option of HDD or SSD storage as well as up to 8GB of memory, a backlit keyboard and multi-touch trackpad, 7-in1 card reader and fingerprint reader.

Designed for durability and portable connectivity, Dell's new Latitude E4310 offers a choice of 2.4GHz Core i5-520M or 2.53GHz Core i5-540M processor on a mobile QS57 Express Chipset with up to 8GB DDR3 RAM spread over two slots. The motherboard has a responsive free-fall sensor to help protect the system in the event of accidental drops and the tri-metal rugged case with reinforced hinges helps protect the business laptop against the bumps and knocks of everyday use.

There's a choice of 500GB SATA HDD or 250GB encrypted HDD or 128GB/250GB SSD secured by hard drive locks to help prevent light-fingered opportunists from easily making away with precious data. As well as numerous Windows 7 or Vista configurations, Ubuntu 9.10 is also on offer for those who prefer to live without Microsoft.

Intel HD graphics with dynamic frequency power the 13.3 inch, 1366x768 widescreen LED-backlit display, above which there is an integrated light sensitive 2MP webcam and mic. Wired and wireless connectivity comes in the shape of 802.11n WiFi, Dell Wireless 375 Bluetooth, Smart Card reader or the option of a contactless reader, USB 2.0 and eSATA. The 12.71 x 8.46 x 1.1/1.2 inch E4310 also benefits from DVD or Blu-ray optical drive and optional fingerprint reader for extra security.

Latitude ON technology gives instant access to basic functionality (such as email, calendar and contacts) without having to boot up the OS and there's a backlit keyboard option available to help users keep on working, even in dim lighting conditions.

At the time of writing, Dell has marked the Latitude E4310 as "coming soon" and there's no word on price.

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