ThinkPads to receive emails even when switched off

Lenovo ThinkPad

New ExpressCard device allows laptop to send and receive emails even when laptop is switched off

Lenovo ThinkPads will be able to send and receive email even when the laptop is switched off, thanks to a tie-up with Israeli firm Yoggie.

The two companies are working together to supply Lenovo's ThinkPads with an always-on ExpressCard device that securely sends and retrieves email when the laptop is in hibernate mode or fully switched off.

The device uses Bluetooth to synchronise with a BlackBerry handset, allowing the user to download messages from Microsoft Exchange, POP3 accounts of webmail services such as GMail. The device sports 500MB of flash memory to store the retrieved email, which is instantly available to the user the moment they boot the laptop.

The device can also be used to send emails queuing in the outbox immediately after the laptop has been switched off.

The invention does rather beg the question: why bother synchronising the laptop with a BlackBerry instead of simply reading the emails on your smartphone? Lenovo and Yoggie are clearly hoping the convenience of replying to and sending emails from a full-size keyboard will be enough to tempt business customers.

Yoggie claims the device is entirely secure, with a selection of antivirus, anti-spam and phishing detection software included on the device, which has its own memory and lightweight Linux operating system.

The device is based on similar technology to Yoggie's Pico and Gatekeeper devices, which provide a full security suite on a USB thumb drive.

Yoggie has yet to announce details of the device's availability or price.

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