Should PC Manufactures Abandon Tablets and Focus on Ultrabooks Instead?



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...It's not a matter of "either tablets or Ultrabooks"

Where PC manufacturers should focus? the answer is in BOTH, and if they need to abandon something, it is the actual thick and heavy notebooks.

The problem that PC manufacturers now face is that, they were planning on releasing an Ultrabook wave (30 to 50) at Jan 2012 CES... but these babes are technology obsolete already.

In the laptop history -heat- has been the main failure culprit, and so most anybody knows that you cannot place them on your legs, sofa, bed, or anywhere where there's not a handy table... bad for a portable solution. That, together with short memory life (that wont even endure a day's work, or a couple of films), are the two main technical factors that stops Laptops from being an effective educational, work or entertainment all-round solution.

However, enter 2012's Ivy Bridge 22nm CPU technology, and suddenly (1)high performance, (2)low electrical consumption, hence less heat, and (3)over 8-10 hours of battery autonomy are finally attainable inside Laptops.

Contrasting these great news, Intel has been actively pushing Ultrabooks into manufacturers, but then the first wave to be released is not been let to have these attributes by being stuck on old 32nm Sandy bridge technology... while from 2012 May on, bright Ivy bridge CPUs will be released to desktops, notebooks, and the whole lot.
////Intel said you or the vendors may not upgrade today's ultrabooks with coming 22nm size CPUs later on, whereas actual Desktops upgradeability is already confirmed, so technically it would be feasible.
Intel needs to fix this silly limitation (urgently needed).

Plus fourth factor (4); Price. Customers are already buying powerful laptops from $400 to $800, to point to the high volume sales range. And so Ultrabooks need to get in there to be able to sell in volumes and stop being just in the premier ligue 

That was ultrabooks in the up-to-now context. However at 2012, we are entering into a new usage paradigm. Tablets, applications, phones, touch screens, Kinect and dozens of other technologies coming together with low price accesibility and performance.
Merging all those, Windows 8, as someones here coincide, is going to soon bring radical news to the mainstream; like Touch and Excel together, or Voice recognition and Word, Conferencing and Kinect, Kinect and games and multiple client parrot-style voice commands for the desktop, for main menus, etc. etc.
This sudden scenary will bring out the need for powerful Ultrabooks and/or Tablets, touch-able and ready to connect to remote appliances (USB3 and Sata 6Gbs, PCI3, thunderbolt, all will have a reality call).

That said, let's have a look to the big picture; less than a 1.000 million people worldwide, has ever had a notebook/PC and there's a latent need to supply them to 2 to 4.000 people in the next years, given the right conditions of performance. price and all in a easy-usage context.
Like the phone fast adoptions, Tablets and Ultrabooks could have a very fast pace and get into big volumes if the above 4 conditions are met.
So far the industry (and Intel leading it) has brought most of what is needed to the table... but at the same time, their high priced CPUs are the last barrier that remains out of proportion to open the flood gates of big volume sales. ARM, Dresden, Samsung and even China Factories come secondarily but fast, with their CPU solutions...
So it looks like its a matter of timing that will decide who runs the coming waves and when.



I know there are a few other types of tablets out there, and each has its own strengths and weaknesses... but right now, I'd honestly buy an iPad if I had the money for a tablet. As soon as there's one solid alternative to the iPad, then we'll see.



I think the answer to the question lies purely in the economic realm. Any company that foresees an acceptable risk/return relationship from either platform should offer the platform.

Personally, I thiink that each platform has existing and potential features that are differentiated sufficiently that some will choose one portable platform, while others will choose the other. And, there are some of us who will do both.

I recently purchased an 11" MacBook Air knowing that I would miss some of the features of a tablet. My wife and I worked things out. :) She will get the new iPad due Feb., Mar., or April, and I'll get her first generation iPad--which is perfect for me (having WIFI, GPS, and plenty of storage). Both fit perfectly in a very, very small Targus bag--along with other desired goodies. 



Duplicate Post



The tablet form-factor is the future.  Notebooks and variants will become an increasingly niche market as tablets become the norm for portable computing.  When the "personal terminal" idea finally has the technology available to mature into reality, even dedicated PCs will become dinosaurs.  The tablet is the stepping-stone to that future. 

They should no more concede the market than Google conceded the smartphone market.  Apple is an innovation leader, not a market leader; there's a difference.


Holly Golightly

Hell no!!! They need to continue on with this war, not submit to the enemy.

Okay, so here is my view, I feel that Intel's Ultrabooks have no future. Most people can not tell the difference between a very thing notebook computer verses a regular ultrabook. They are both clamshells that are portable but not truly mobile, for you need to be seated or laying down to use them.

A lot of people see the clamshell design as old, generic, and outdated. Think flip phones of the 90s. Sure, they are common, but at some point, least desireable, and not innovative at all.

Tablets are revolutionary to a degree. There really hasn't been a slate computer since, ever. At least not before the original iPad as I recall. It is a new form factor, and it is more affordable than Intel Ultrabooks. Think, what would the average person want, save more money with a brand new form factor that is truly mobile, or go for something that is traditional for twice the price?

They would be foolish to admit defeat and turn to ultrabooks. What they need to do is make more innovative designs, come with state-of-the-art specs, and sell them at a competitive price. I think what Asus and Acer need to do is wait it out for Windows 8, and then they will have a fighting chance. 

Right now they are losing because they are using they are using that slow, and often buggy Android Honeycomb. Of course they are going to look bad. But to simply give up and go to ultrabooks would be foolish. They are in for a big disappointment as only 1 form factor will thrive... And it won't be the ultrabook that will defeat tablet, but the other way around.



I just don't think people want an Android tablet.  I know I bought my wife an Ipad2 awhile back, she doesn't even use it.  She uses her Mac all the time.  I am holding out for Windows 8 OS and the tablets with that OS on them before I even remotely think of buying a tablet.


I believe that when the Windows tablets hit the market, thats when Apples share will go down.  The Windows tablets will have more than enough power and functionality with them and at a bargain price, almost like the Kindle.  Everyone who builds Windows compturs will end up building Windows tablets there for making the technology more mainstream and cheaper than said Apple products.  

Apple can continue to make their money on their products cause of the huge mark-up on price.  But in the end, people aren't going to want to pay 500$ for the cheapest iPad with the lowest memory and specs, that will only work with Apple products.  People will want to have that freedom of product and Windows 8 will provide that.  



You do realize Monkeysack already has a product similar in function to Windows 8 competing with iOS? It's called Windows Phone and it isn't doing that well! The thing you are missing is people don't buy Apple products on the specs, they buy them because they just work.



Manufacturers need to focus on advertising, if anything.  As a consumer, I know what I want.  I want an android tablet.  I know a handful of people, and most of them want android tablets, but what's on TV?  apple iPads.  I heard someone the other day saying "They should make an iPad that runs android like my phone!".  it made me sad.



There ARE android tablets out; the surge of tablets hitting the markets is actually sickening. The problem is, though, most tablets are trying to mirror the form factor and functionality of iPads. So let me ask you, as a consumer, would you prefer to spend $300 for an imitation of a $500 product? 



Personally, I think Acer and Asus should focus more on laptops and ultrabooks. They need to find their niche and  thrive in it instead of trailing behind Apple picking up crumbs. In a business sense, I feel like any kind of device that has a touch screen keyboard is not going to be able to keep up with actual laptops anytime soon based on the speed of typing, the response of the software to direct hardware input, and the fact that if I make a mistake, I can just use a mouse and select all text I want to delete easily.

Also, from a marketing perspective, what exactly can a tablet do that an ultrabook or laptop can't? If the niche for a tablet is that it's portable and that it has a long battery life, then wouldn't an ultrabook accomodate both that AND be able to include better processing power and better keyboard? I guess what I'm saying is that to expand the niche for tablets, you have to incorporate it into basic everyday living and give it control over basic functionalities such as being able to turn on the water for your shower in the morning while you're still under the blankets and to turn on your coffee machine from your bedroom. Because it's touch screen, users have a sense that they want to be able to control everything in and around it, so it has the potential to augment everyday living, but won't be nearly as useful for work oriented tasks. That's my personal opinion though, but I would like to ask how many people actually do as those commercials do and site in during a meeting and type up notes using a tablet? Fine tune a powerpoint presentation on a tablet? Do anything work related?

With a laptop, the niche is school and work. For the ultrabook market, despite Apple holding a commanding lead, I feel like many consumers are not buying from Apple because 1) they're not used to the OSX amd 2) price vs performance. Call me closed minded, but despite being very interested in the Macbook Air,  I feel like I would lean more towards a windows ultrabook IF there was one that could compare due to my 16 years experience using Windows. Right now, I'm waiting till the next Macbook Air to be released with $2,000 in my savings to buy it, but if there was a windows based device that could compare, I may reconsider. And that's what I'm trying to tell Acer and Asus, why haven't you made an ultrabook that gives me a definitive reason to not buy my first Apple product? Wait, that's a lie, I have an iPod shuffle... but you get the point. Besides, who really needs to play angrybirds that much that they need a $700 device to do it?



I've been holding off on buying a tablet and a Ultrabook.  I really like the Ultrabook concept but not the size/price.  I have my phone for convenience when I don't have a laptop around.  I just don't see a tablet ever replacing a laptop for me personally.  I can do soo much more/faster with a laptop.  I need a keyboard, 50 tabs open, programs running in the background, large screen etc.  I'm holding off on buying a Ultrabook until they come out with larger screens.  Which is hopefully soon.  But since there are no mentions of this I may be out of luck.


Holly Golightly

...That is until they start making tablets with quadcore processors. Oh wait...

Tablets have matched the computing power of laptops as of this year. But you are right about one this... Screen size. I can not get fully immersed on a 13 inch screen. This is why I have my desktop plugged in to my flatscreen. Can't go wrong with 32" of MaximumPC, LOL!

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