Apple's Supply Chain Dominance Forcing Ultrabook Vendors to Opt for Fiberglass

Pulkit Chandna

Ultrabooks are turning out to be a test of metal, er, mettle for PC vendors. Conceived by Intel and expected to begin populating store shelves later this year, ultrabooks have among their defining characteristics: a full-voltage processor, a thickness cap of 0.8 inches, and a sub-$1,000 price tag. But, as PC vendors are fast learning, making an ultrabook is easier said than done.

The price ceiling is not their only problem. According to Digitimes , PC vendors are currently in a scrap for magnesium-aluminum notebook chassis with Apple and the latter is winning hands down. PC vendors have no choice but to look for alternatives for their upcoming ultrabooks.

The Taiwanese site claims to have it on good authority from its “sources from chassis players” that more and more vendors are settling for fiberglass chassis. However, this isn’t bad from the end user’s perspective as fiberglass chassis are not only quite tough, but when compared to magnesium-aluminum chassis they are significantly cheaper as well. A Taiwan-based fiberglass chassis maker that Digitimes talked to noted that ultrabooks with a fiberglass body will be around $50-100 cheaper than those with a magnesium-aluminum chassis.

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