The latest MacBooks don’t support Windows 7 installation via Boot Camp
It has now been more than five years since Windows 7—the most widely used desktop operating system out there—first walked into our lives, promising to right Vista’s many wrongs. Although it has carried the workhorse mantle previously associated with XP pretty well, the OS is proving to be more durable than Microsoft would like. The Redmond-based company would, of course, like nothing more than for all the Windows 7 users out there to move to Windows 8/8.1 or the forthcoming Windows 10 en masse. But it’s not alone as even its arch-rival Apple apparently thinks the OS has overstayed its welcome.
Spectre x360 is now available from the company’s website
For a number of years, members of the PC master race looked to the Macbook Air with envy, even though most of us knew deep down that we just weren’t meant to be and there could be no platonic bond between the two of us. Wintel and their PC-making chums obviously took note of this lust at some point and what was initially a trickle of pretenders (remember all those “Air killers”?) soon became a cascade of contenders. Adding to that deluge of ultrabooks and ultra-thin convertibles, Hewlett-Packard has announced the Spectre x360, a 13.3-inch Broadwell-powered device designed in collaboration with Microsoft.
Today Razer announced a 14-inch version of the Razer Blade. Known simply as the Razer Blade (yea, we don’t get these new-age naming conventions either), the small gaming laptop is incredibly svelte being thinner than a standing dime. Measuring .66 inches tall, Razer boasts that it is the world’s thinnest gaming laptop and that it is actually skinnier than the fattest part of a MacBook Air.
At the end of the day, it doesn't really matter if Apple's MacBook Air provided inspiration for Intel's Ultrabook platform and AMD's push into ultrathin territory, or whether these new generation of thin and light machines represent a natural evolution of the form factor. What matters is which platform will rule the day, and thus seize the lion's share of the market and the financial rewards that come with it. At least one analyst believes that platform belongs to Apple.
It's said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but when you're Apple, a company that thrives on form just as much as it does on function, there's nothing flattering about other companies designing products that look even remotely like existing iDevices. And make no mistake, today's Ultrabooks share design DNA with Apple's MacBook Air, DNA Apple doesn't want anyone else using, so the Cupertino company went out and snagged a broad patent for the MBA's wedge shaped design.
It’s always nice to set goals as long as they are reasonable, for what are goals devoid of reason but mere dreams. Take for instance, Intel’s widely publicized goal of helping ultrabooks capture 40 percent of the laptop market by the end of next year. Most analysts seem to be of the opinion that Intel is hoping for too much too soon. Mark Moskowitz, Executive Director at J.P. Morgan, is the latest analyst to cast doubts over the viability of this goal.
The Intel-backed Ultrabook armada is all ready to set sail for an ambitious incursion into the domain of ultraportables. But the real motive is not to make a dent in the Apple-dominated ultraportable PC market but to stop the rapid advance of the iPad and other tablets. Even though Intel and its PC vendor chums have been making a lot of noise about this new breed of ultra-thin and light notebooks, Dell and HP continue to be conspicuous by their absence from the ranks of Ultrabook backers. So where are there Ultrabooks?
Dell is reportedly taking steps not just to compete with Apple's MacBook Air, but with every MacBook model on the market. The OEM will target the MacBook Air with a sleek and slim ultraportable of its own, one that it will introduce sometime around CES in January 2012. The timing is interesting for a number of reasons, one of which is because CES 2012 will mark the three-year anniversary of when Dell announced its now defunct Adamo laptop.
Thin and light notebooks inevitably draw comparisons to Apple's MacBook Air, and you can probably expect a lot more of that once Ultrabooks emerge, at least at first. Part of the reason probably has to do with there not being a ton of pancaked proportioned notebooks. Intel aims to change the mobile landscape with its Ultrabook concept, and it looks as though Acer is itching to get started.
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.