Acer will tomorrow launch a slender sub-notebook to rival Sony’s desirable Vaio C1XD.

With the 1.8kg TravelMate 350, Acer is aiming for the business user market. This means features such as onboard wireless networking capability, and a smartcard reader providing a high level of security should the machine fall into the wrong hands.

Having a smartcard reader lets you to lock up the whole machine, encrypt individual files and record password details to your 10 most-visited websites. The websites can then be accessed by a single keystroke.

This is Acer’s attempt at dealing with users’ security fears. These were pointed up last week when a PC Advisor poll showed nearly half of respondents thought security fears were the biggest obstacle to UK e-commerce.

Acer’s new machine also has a hard disk anti-shock protection system an aluminium casing.

Technical spec includes a 650 or 700Hz Mobile Pentium III processor, memory expandable up to 256MB, 10GB hard disk and 13.3in screen with a maximum resolution of 1024x768. Prices start at £1,499 ex-VAT.