Dell plans to fit all its laptops with LED backlights by 2010, which will save users a massive £12 million in power bills as well as helping the environment.

By moving from the standard compact cathode fluorescent lamps (CCFLs) to LEDs, the laptops can be made thinner, thanks to smaller elements, will drain less power from the unit, and contain no mercury, so are far easier to recycle.

Making the laptops thinner not only improves design, as shown with the MacBook Air, but also allows greater numbers to be shipped, which is a huge boon for a large scale manufacturer like Dell, according to PC Mag.

Low drain

"Why did we do this? We have been listening to our customers in order to extract customer value, and LED helps to move that agenda along," said Michael Murphy, Dell's senior manager of worldwide environmental affairs.

Using LEDs only drains between 35 per cent and 55 per cent less power than CCFL backlighting, which means battery life can be improved dramatically, especially if coupled with a high performance SSD.

PC Mag also reports that by the end of 2009 around 80 per cent of laptops will have migrated to LED technology, with the final number switching later the next year.