You can get smaller WhateverBrite screens. Sony and Fujitsu have 13.3", and even 10", and the new Asus W3 has a 13". There are however, no high resolution WhateverBrite screens under 15", and no WSXGA ones under 17" unless you import a Sony FS90 from Japan.
I have no idea why the most popular screen size available (15.4") is not available from anyone in WSXGA enhanced, but it isn't. It's the big beef many of us have with every new laptop that comes out.
Once you've had glossy it is hard to go back, and the same is true of higher resolutions, so 95% of new laptops automatically exclude me and others.
As for the battery issue, you simply turn down the brightness to get better battery life. The Sony TR2 Xbrite I had got 4-5 hours. On my Sony A190, which I am typing this on, full brightness down to zero brightness doubles battery life and is still quite useable.