Making products thinner and lighter is the path most developments take and this is what is happening in mobild computing too. I would see it as a next step in laptops but hope they don't mimic the tablets because that would mean taking aways the high computing power a laptop meant as a portable computing device.
there's space for a variety of mobile devices. today's ultrabook is just fitting a "premium netbook" niche, which is fine - it's a valuable use-case. it's not the same use-case as tablets, though: they're are more of an appliance, less general-purpose, not suitable for serious typing, more for reading, less for multitasking. that's not to say that touch wouldn't be welcome on ultrabooks (actually, the big improvement there would be higher-quality IPS-type panels.)
It would be keyboard, performance and industry standard software. The line is certainly thinning.
I'm anxious to see how the "instant on" really works. That feature has been promised for a very long time. I've yet to see it on a Windows device.
"...or should I say MacBook Air clones with a Windows operating system." is an unfair statement. Various brands introduced thin laptop computer long before MacBook Air came to the market. A lot of high end Windows based PC from Sony, Fujitsu and Toshiba are lighter than MacBook Air.
Just over the weekend, I have stopped by Microsoft shop to check out various PC. There are various impressive notebook computer although I have hard time differentiating ultrabook from regular notebook computer. A PC of 2.2 lbs with full HD screen is an ultrabook or is just a notebook computer. I have seen another PC which is comparable to 11" MacBook Air. It costs $100 less. The industry design is impressive and the choice of material is perfect.
With the experience, I believe, for Ultrabook to be successful, better differentiators have to be introduced. Light weight and long battery life are just some of those. Consumers are looking for more.
you are missing the point. There were mp3 players long before iPOD, but iPOD defined the MP3 experience.
Apple is never first to market - it just brings the best product to market. Best - measured in terms of features that consumers care about and are ready to pay for. Not features that are laundry listed in a magazine.
MACAir - key (price premium) features
instant on less than 10s (always)
Display resolution - the best there is
Light - I dont know if they are the lightest now - but light enough that improving this further is pushing on a string
Tough to define, but when you can get away with charging 2x, you know you have done something right
Only four PC OEMs have introduced the thinner, lighter, sleeker notebooks to market.
--- Making the product thinner, lighter and sleeker is not the only thing that will help, it's mostly about the power and performance. And then comes the commercial aspects of it, will it be cheaper compared to ARM based products, and then comes Business models, whether intel keeps their OEM's tied to their trends or give the flex to add their own stuff on it.
The unique thing that Apple brought to the table was the ridiculously high price... The LapDock (Motorola's name) approach is likely to be the trend of the future as mobile devices become powerful enough to satisfty 90% of consumers. I still expect Microsoft to integrate the desktop and mobile platforms at some point.
Ultra-book with touchscreen is viable option that is useful in the business community and it should be able to replace standard Laptop computers that are to heavy and luck multiple options (fast start-up, longer battery usage, tablet like features, and removable keyboard), that Ultra-books have or will shortly have. Business community also requires much better security than what Tablets offer and for any heavy work pop-up screen keyboard can not replace full keyboard.
The concept of Ultrabook reminds me APS camera with 28mm film cartridge. APS was indeed good camera - sleek, light and compact, easy to use, compare to 35mm film camera. However APS camera market did not really take off. People just hate to pay for film and DPE service, no matter how APS was good as film camera.
I have no doubt Ultrabook will be good PC, but will PC could be good product for upcoming years? People just hate to deal with all those PC problem - configuration, compatibility, virus / malware, software update etc. Even though those issues are fundamentally remains for Smartpad / Smartphone too, impression for general people is Smartpad / Smartphone is much easier to deal than PC.
Apple caters to the 1 % wannabes and continues to wrack up large margins by manipulating them here as well as by using "slave" labor in China via Foxconn etc to assemble the i - whatevers.
Apple represents the worst hypocrisy of the Baby Boomer generation that grew up dealing drugs and then became Lawyers or MBAs.
Jobs represented the nadir of this hypocrisy - a hyper - capitalist with pseudo " Buddhist " pretensions.
The smartest thing that dropout Jobs ever did was to glom on to Steve Wozniak and market the Apple I built by Woz. That made the biggest difference to Jobs life.
Add great speech and command recognition in noisy environment, and eliminate the keyword. Run software abstraction layer so I can run window and Android apps.
Don't call it a Ultra PC or a tablet, call it a 'Personal Assistant' to the World of information
Ultrabooks are what customers have been wanting for several years now - the fact that they've finally come to the party is a sign that Intel is now beginning to feel the pinch from ARM. Too little, too late for the PC though. If they'd not dragged their feet then the PC would still have more years to live, but Intel has hastened its demise with its own complacency.
Really, a "Samsung SoC"?. Samsung is the foundry for the A4, the design and the IP is Apple's.
I guess every fabless semiconductor company is just printing their name on a "TSMC SoC" or a "UMC SoC" or Global Foundries, etc.
Thinner, lighter, better battery life, instant on/off - these are what it's about. I hear many high end smartphone users complaining about battery life - most users do not think about tech limits until the word goes around or they see it themselves. Spread the word. :)