With just days to go before Computex in Taipei, Lenovo has announced the launch of its first netbook powered by Nivdia's ION graphics processor.

The new model, which will go under the IdeaPad S12 moniker, will be a 12-inch screen offering powered by the Intel Atom processor and cost under $449 in the US.

The new Nvidia chip, already used in Acer's AspireRevo will mean the netbook can and will offer 1080p high definition video playback as well as play games like Spore.

The new model will enlarge the netbook's WXGA screen from 10.1 inches to 12.1 inches for better viewing. The company has also said that the keyboard will be 100 percent the size of a full-size laptop rather than a reduced offering.

"We've heard from consumers loud and clear about the need for affordable and extremely portable computing devices, and we've responded by introducing our third netbook with a completely new form factor, making mini-computing more usable", said Dion Weisler, vice president, Business Operations, Idea Product Group, Lenovo.

The new IdeaPad S12 netbook will promise a 6-hour battery life, Wi-Fi connectivity, ExpressCard slot, 160GB of storage and 1GB of memory. The company has also said that certain models within the range will include a VGA port or HDMI port and a 4-in-1 multicard reader.

No word on UK pricing. We will keep you posted.

UPDATE: The S12 is due to be available in the UK in July from £349.