Samsung is readying new, smaller versions of its S-Series Ultra HD TV, with 55- and 65-inch models due to hit Korea in June, while a 13.3-inch ultrabook display with almost as high resolution is also waiting in the wings. Samsung’s two new UHD sets will be the smallest in the range the company offers, after
Tag Archives: Ultrabook
For a while, it looked like ASUS’ Transformer Book would turn out to be vaporware: after debuting to much fanfare a year ago, it encountered numerous delays, and even missed the crucial holiday shopping season. Now it’s finally here, priced at $ 1,499 with a Core i7 processor, a 13.3-inch (1080p) screen and a detachable keyboard dock housing both a spare battery and a 500GB hard drive. The problem is the timing: Intel is about to launch its new Haswell chips, and here’s the Transformer Book, arriving on the scene with a lofty price and a year-old CPU.
It’d be easy enough to tell you just wait for a refresh, which is how we’ve been ending all of our PC reviews in the weeks leading up to this year’s Computex. But it’s still worth investigating whether the Transformer Book (aka the TX300) is a compelling idea. Though we’ve seen many tablet hybrids (the Surface Pro, etc.), they’ve mostly had smaller 11-inch screens. So what happens when you take that form factor and stretch it to accommodate a bigger screen — and a more spacious keyboard? And how does it compare to all those convertible options out there, like the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 or the Dell XPS 12? Let’s have a look.
Gallery: ASUS Transformer Book review
Gallery: ASUS Transformer Book review
We know you’ve got questions, and if you’re brave enough to ask the world for answers, then here’s the outlet to do so. This week’s Ask Engadget inquiry is from Meredith, who needs a new Ultrabook so she can go to Law School. If you’re looking to ask one of your own, drop us a line at ask [at] engadget [dawt] com.
“I’m going to law school and I’ll need a new laptop. Since I’ll be commuting with a long train ride each way, I’m looking for a sub-$ 1000 device with Windows, a long battery life, SSD and it has to be lightweight. I don’t need anything too powerful as I’m not doing any gaming, but something that’ll work reliably for the next three years would be ideal for lecturers, web browsing and word processing. Is there a bargain to be had now, or should I wait for back-to-school Ultrabooks to come out? Thanks!”
In your humble narrator’s position, waiting a few months for a Haswell device, which promises significantly increased battery life might be a wise choice. However, if you’re not too fussed about a touchscreen device, then our laptop expert feels that Samsung’s Series 9 might be the way forward. Of course, this isn’t just a private enquiry, so let’s share this out with the wider community and see what they can come up with. It’s Ask Engadget, folks, you know the drill.
Filed under: Laptops
We’ve already seen Sony take a stab at a Windows 8 hybrid in the form of the VAIO Duo 11, and now a clip has appeared on YouTube apparently showing an unannounced 13-inch Ultrabook slider with a 1080p Triluminos touchscreen display. Allegedly, the video is being used for training at UK retail chain Dixons, and in addition to repeatedly collapsing and opening the slim white and silver unit, the demonstrator plays around with a stylus in Microsoft’s Fresh Paint. There are a couple of text overlays near the end of clip, highlighting the “SurfSlider design,” backlit keyboard, ClearAudio+ and ActiveSleep tech, as well as its 10 hours of battery life. NFC is also said to be on board, along with an 8-megapixel camera with Exmor RS sensor, Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB RAM and 128GB SSD. The incredibly grainy video is embedded after the break, and although we can’t verify its authenticity, we also can’t ally it to any known product.
[Thanks, Aiga and Christopher]
Dell has taken the wraps off the Dell Wireless Dock, which allows the company’s Latitude 6430u Ultrabook to connect to peripherals wirelessly using the WiGig standard.
If you read our latest laptop buyer’s guide, you may have noticed we included a lot of high-end PCs. Which makes sense: we’ve been quite busy reviewing flagship devices since Windows 8 went on sale last fall. We’re talking the best Microsoft’s partners have to offer: twisting screens, dual screens, 8-second boot-up times. That’s been fun, and we’re pretty sure those are the more interesting products to read about, but even so, we decided it’s high time we started reviewing some more mid-range systems — you know, those models that don’t cost $ 1,200.
So, in the coming months, you’re going to see us review more of these everyman systems, in addition to those lustworthy flagships. First up: the Samsung Series 5 UltraTouch. We’ll admit, we’re a little tardy here, as this went on sale late last year, but if you’ve never heard of it, it’s basically last year’s Series 5 Ultrabook with a touch panel appended. For the money ($ 800 and up), you get some modest specs (Core i3 / i5 processors with hybrid storage and a 1,366 x 768 screen), though if our research is correct, those are the same basic specs you’ll find on most competing models. Given that, any display snobs can show themselves the door now, before we even get started. But what if you’ve been looking for a more affordable Windows 8 system? How does Samsung’s entry stack up?
Gallery: Samsung Series 5 UltraTouch review
noh8rz10 writes “Holy moly! iPad gets a heavyweight sibling, clicking in at 128GB. This places it in range of storage for Surface Pro and ultrabooks. It’s clearly targeted at the professional market, as the press release cites x-rays and CAD files as reasons. Should Microsoft be afraid? Methinks so. Best part, pricing is growing by log 2. Just as the 32GB version is $ 100 more than the 16, and the 64 is $ 100 more than the 32, this new version is $ 100 more than the 64!”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
There’s a brand new Ultrabook in town sporting Intel inside from Velocity Micro, with three new models pumped up for the new year. This lineup comes in with three notebooks by the names of NoteMagix U430, NoteMagix U450, and NoteMagix U470, each of them coming in with a unique chassis and no Bloatware at all,
nk497 writes “Dell’s ‘Project Sputnik’ laptop is now on sale. The XPS 13 Developer Edition comes with Ubuntu 12.04 pre-installed, and costs $ 1,549 — $ 50 more than the same model running Windows. The Ubuntu Ultrabook is the result of a skunkworks project to optimise the open-source OS to run on Dell projects, to create better laptops for developers. The idea of the project was to create a laptop for developers, based around ‘the idea that developers are the kings of IT and set the agenda for web companies, who in turn, set the agenda for the whole industry,’ Dell said.” Reader skade88 points out a positive review from Ars Technica.
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Lenovo is apparently not convinced of the post-PC lingo, with its latest series of announcements. The good old ThinkPad brand is used once again for another model, the ThinkPad Twist. It is a 12.5″ tablet/laptop hybrid powered by a third-generation Intel Core i7 processor.
Ultrabooks, whether you like them or not, are here in full force. Manufacturers left and right are releasing ultrabook after ultrabook, so now the question isn’t “who can make the fastest ultrabook?” but rather “who can make the best looking ultrabook?” Ultrabooks invite style – the entire idea behind them is to give consumers an
The rise of tablets and lackluster pricing have stymied the “Intel-inspired” slim laptops.
I’ve written a fair amount about “ultrabooks” here, a type of slim laptop whose specifications were set by Intel. (Surprise! One of those specs is an Intel chip.) To the extent this blog has an overarching suspenseful question, it has been, “What will my next major technology purchase be?” I prize portability, productivity, and affordability, and find myself wavering between tablet and laptop options. The ultrabook has long seemed tempting.
Worldwide ultrabook shipments are falling short — way short– of expectations, according to a report from IHS iSuppli released Monday.
Over in Berlin at IFA 2012, the folks at Acer have revealed their next-generation Ultrabook lineup by the name of Aspire M3 touch. This lineup improves on their Ultrabook offerings thus far with a 10-point touch display optimized for Windows 8. The Acer Aspire M3 touch is just 22mm thin and weighs in at 2.3kg,
This week we’ve gotten the opportunity to have a peek at three of HP’s newest touchscreen notebooks, each of them having been announced just this week and each of them coming with no less than Windows 8 right out of the box. The first of these is the HP SpectreXT TouchSmart Ultrabook – a device
Toshiba’s most recent Ultrabook offerings have something of a split personality. On the one hand, there’s the Satellite U845W, a high-end machine with solid quality and a funky, 21:9 display. Announced alongside it, though, was the Satellite U845, a more modest sort of machine for folks who can’t afford to spend $ 1,000 on their next laptop. Starting at $ 750, it offers all the specs you’d expect from a mid-range laptop: Ivy Bridge, Intel Wireless Display and a backlit keyboard. And, given that it’s a slightly larger Ultrabook, it also makes room for key ports like HDMI and an Ethernet jack. But the U845 is hardly the only 14-inch thin-and-light on the block, and it’s definitely not the only sub-$ 800 system aimed at the back-to-school crowd. Read on to see if there’s enough pizazz here to make this a memorable machine.
Gallery: Toshiba Satellite U845 review
Filed under: Laptops
MojoKid writes “The venerable Lenovo ThinkPad, with its little red TrackPoint nub, has gone the way of the Ultrabook. If there’s one small dig ThinkPads have taken with regularity over the years, it’s that though there’s a ton of quality and substance built into these machines, style was not a hallmark of the brand. The all new ThinkPad X1 Carbon could very well change the utilitarian stereotype of Lenovo’s business-backed line-up, however. As the name suggests, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon is built from carbon fiber material throughout its chassis and internal rollcage. Its 14-inch display drives a native resolution of 1600×900, and its keyboard, arguably one of the nicest features of the ThinkPad line, is backlit and even more refined with contoured key caps. Battery life hits a max of about six hours on a full charge, and the machine weighs in at 3lbs and .31-inches at it thinnest dimension.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.
The Lenovo ThinkPad series is currently celebrating its 20th birthday, and today we have their new ThinkPad X1 Carbon on the chopping blocks. After all these years still producing some of the best business and casual laptops available the X1 Carbon looks to improve on its older sibling, while staying at the top of the
ASUS made a grand entrance into the Ultrabook race with the Zenbook Prime UX31E, which brought a sleek design and lovely, high-res screen. That machine was one of our favorites in what was still a budding category, though we took issue with the shallow keyboard and uncomfortable touchpad. The company recently started shipping its new Zenbook Prime series, including the 11-inch UX21A we checked out a few months ago. But there’s also a follow-up to the 13-inch UX31E on the market: the ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A. This laptop offers a retooled keyboard, Ivy Bridge chips and a 1,920 x 1,080 IPS display, starting at $ 1,069. So how does the new 13-inch Zenbook stack up in a crowded field of high-end ultraportables? Join us past the break for the full report.
Gallery: ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A review
Filed under: Laptops
Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1 Carbon has been a known entity since May, when the company gave us a look at the 14-inch, Ivy Bridge-packing Ultrabook. Up until now, though, the successor to the ThinkPad X1 remained somewhat shrouded in mystery, with no pricing or specific availability information to its name. But no more — Lenovo’s just raised the official curtain on the Carbon, announcing a pricing scheme of $ 1,399 and up and targeting an on-sale date of August 21st at Lenovo.com. The entry-level model will run a 1.7GHz Core i5-3317U CPU with 4GB, and it includes a 128GB SSD and Intel’s HD integrated graphics. Like on the ThinkPad X1, 3G connectivity will be an optional feature. Head past the break for more info on the business-centric Ultrabook.
Filed under: Laptops
With dozens and dozens of Ultrabooks on parade, you’d be forgiven if one skinny laptop with an ultra-low voltage processor started to look like the next. Even so, it’s tough to forget the Acer Aspire S5: of all the ultraportables we’ve seen these last nine months, this is the only one with a motorized port cover. Yeah, that one. It’s an intriguing product, to be sure, and the stakes are especially high given that $ 1,400 price: you’d have to really enjoy that form factor (and everything else) to choose it over some less expensive ultraportable. So is it worth it? Is that drop-down door anything more than a gimmick? Questions for the ages, and ones we’ll tackle in our full review after the break.
Gallery: Acer Aspire S5 review
Filed under: Laptops
Sprint has become the first U.S. wireless carrier to offer an ultrabook, which is being sold with a 3G/4G mobile hotspot device at no added cost.
NEC has announced a new ultrabook today called the LaVie Z that claims to be the world’s lightest with a weight of 875 g. NEC used a new alloy for the first time made from a lithium-magnesium die casting process to make the ultrabook thin and lightweight. Despite how light the machine is it still
Details of Dell’s upcoming Windows tablet pair continue to leak out, with the latest talk suggesting the Latitude 10 Windows 8 model due in mid-November will be preceded by a Windows RT version. The Dell Latitude 10 launch will bring a new docking station with extra ports and charging, according to Neowin‘s source, while the Windows-on-ARM tablet – name
We’ve already had our hands on the lovely silver beast that is the Acer Aspire S3 ultrabook, and now it’s come time to refresh the lineup with a 3rd Generation Intel Core i7 processor and a 256GB Solid State Drive to boot. This Acer refresh includes a lovely new champagne color and has a price
Niche or nonsense? That’s the question we find ourselves asking about the new Toshiba Satellite U840W, a 14.4-inch ultrabook with a bizarre 21:9 “cinemascope” widescreen display. Running at 1792 x 768 resolution, the U840W comes preloaded with a custom Toshiba app that automatically scales two apps to run side-by-side. That way, Toshiba tells us, you
Ultrabooks have turned up in force at Computex 2012, and Toshiba isn’t in the mood to be left out. The Toshiba Portégé Z930 – aka the Satellite Z930 – is a 13.3-inch ultrabook using Intel’s 3rd Gen Core processors, and measuring a scant 8.3mm thick at its thinnest point. Despite the dimensions – which include
Intel teams up with DeviceScape for automatic public WiFi, will hook up your Ultrabook in the background
We all know the coffee shop WiFi routine: crack open the laptop, visit a splash page, and dutifully wait until you’re logged in before you get to Twitter. Through a new deal between Intel and DeviceScape, you won’t even have to think about it. Intel’s Smart Connect tool will soon automatically sign in your Ultrabook to a curated list of quality, open WiFi hotspots, even if the PC is fast asleep. This last trick might need Windows 8′s Connected Standby mode to live up to Intel’s expectations, but the dream is to have your email and social feeds updated and waiting before that laptop or tablet screen has even blinked into life. Intel is leaving some gaps in the story, such as whether or not gadget owners will pay a premium for the fast access. We’d guess that Intel is counting on higher computer (and more importantly, processor) sales to make up the difference.
Acer made something of a splash when it trotted out its Timeline Ultra series of Ultrabooks at CES; those waves are just now hitting the shore with a full-on release in the UK under a tweaked Aspire M5 name. Both the 14- and 15-inch models are now known to be packing Intel’s Ivy Bridge-era third-generation Core processors, and the “dedicated” video we heard about in January is NVIDIA’s Kepler-based GeForce GT 640M, which we saw in the Timeline Ultra M3. Either new PC is still under 20mm (0.8 inches) thick with the option of an SSD, like the M3, but slapping the M5 badge on top means a much narrower display bezel, a backlit keyboard and other more upscale touches that show where your money’s going. Picking the 15-inch model adds an optical drive along with a keypad for number-crunching. Mum’s the word on exact specs and that all-important pricing, but those questions will be answered by the time the M5 hits British shops in mid-June. Now all that’s left is to know when the new Aspire reaches the other side of the Atlantic.
The next level powerhouse in workhorse Ultrabook has been revealed by Lenovo as being the ThinkPad X1 Carbon, complete with the claim that it is indeed “the world’s lightest 14-inch professional Ultrabook.” This Ultrabook “exceeds Ultrabook specifications” as Lenovo says with its premium Carbon Fiber roll cage enclosure and full package weighing in at 3
Just in case you thought NEC was done with its PC updates this week, the Japanese PC builder has thrown its hat into the Ultrabook ring with a unique contribution of its own. The LaVie Z has a 13.3-inch screen like your garden variety ultralight, but it weighs just 2.2 pounds through a new lithium-magnesium alloy shell about half the weight of the aluminum that some companies love to use. Unfortunately, that weight and the slim frame are about all we know so far: NEC isn’t providing any internal specifications, possibly because it’s waiting on Ultrabook-ready Ivy Bridge chips. Even so, if you’re hanging around Japan and want the lightest possible laptop you can get at a 13-inch screen size, the wait until the planned summer release will feel like an eternity.
Samsung’s latest Series 9 Ultrabook is certainly a beautiful piece of engineering, but really, what’s the fun in purchasing a new laptop with yesterday’s internals? Fortunately, users won’t need to make that compromise, as the company has now outed a refreshed version of the computer that’s complete with Ivy Bridge internals. The move follows Samsung’s recent reveal of the Series 7 Gamer laptop, but as you’d expect, components in the Series 9 are geared more toward efficiency than performance. At its heart, you’ll find a dual-core 1.7GHz Core i5 3317U CPU (which has yet to be announced), Intel HD Graphics 4000 and the HM75 Express chipset. While its internal storage remains the same, with a 128GB SSD, its memory has received a pleasant bump up to 8GB. No word yet on pricing or availability, but for those who want to own the very latest, we invite you to stay tuned.
Finally escaping its plate glass prison at CES, Sony’s unveiled its first Ultrabook, the VAIO T13. It’s set for release next month and currently packing an Intel core i3-2367M processor (no 3rd generation processor just yet), within a 323mm frame that weighs in at around 1.6kg. Storage is a hybrid of a 320GB HDD and 32GB SSD, hoping to juggle fast start-up times with capacity, while a HD web cam beams out from above the 13.3-inch (1366 x 768) display. There’s 4GB of DDR3 memory with Intel’s own HD Graphics 3000 on the side and Sony reckons you’ll be able eke out up to nine hours from its SSD model. Other connectivity options include Bluetooth 4.0, HDMI output, and USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports. Interested? Then hit up the full gallery of Sony’s new Ultrabook below, with a press release thrown in for good measure.
Gallery: Sony VAIO T13 ultrabook
This week Intel has introduced a standardized battery solution for Ultrabooks around the world, working with a solution that would make Ultrabooks not only cheaper to make, but potentially able to run much better as well. The standard size Intel is speaking about here for Ultrabooks of the future is 60mm x 80mm, aka 2.4-inches
Pop quiz: which of the following is being marketed as an Ultrabook? Behind door number one, we have a 2.5-pound wisp of a laptop with a 13-inch screen, Core i5 CPU and 128GB SSD. Next up there’s contestant number two, a 3.94-pound notebook with a 14-inch display, 500GB hard drive, and DVD burner. If you guessed the latter, well, congrats on reading that headline correctly, though we’d understand if you said that first option sounds like the Ultrabook.
Indeed, Samsung’s Series 5 Ultrabooks are a tad plumper than most, and look especially oversized next to the Series 9, that other ultraportable we’ve been describing. But it’s not just Samsung using loose parameters to decide what counts as an Ultrabook. If Intel’s own forecast is correct, half of the 75-plus models that go on sale this year will have 14- or 15-inch screens, and we’ve already seen a sampling of contenders from HP, Acer and Toshiba. The idea, say PC makers, is to lure in a more old-fashioned kind of customer, shoppers who aren’t quite ready to ditch their DVD drive, and who aren’t keen on stepping down to a too-small screen. At the same time, these laptops are thinner and lighter than similarly sized laptops, last longer on a charge and hold the promise of faster performance — three reasons manufacturers can get away with charging more than they would for a plain ‘ol laptop.
In a nutshell, that’s the value proposition behind the 14-inch Series 5, which costs $ 949 and comes bearing a Core i5 processor, 500GB hybrid hard drive and, of course, a DVD burner. But do the benefits of a bigger Ultrabook outweigh the annoyances? And how does it compare to regular 14-inch laptops that aren’t classified as ultraportables (and that don’t command the Ultrabook tax)? Let’s find out.
Ultrabooks were all the rage at CES 2012 last month, and if one model rose above the rest, it was the XPS 13 from Dell. The latest in a long line of powerful portables, the Ultrabook version of the XPS 13 wowed onlookers with a combination of a metal, plastic and carbon fiber body and incredible slimness, [...]
After the constant bombardment at CES last month, it’s hard to deny that Intel’s Ultrabook spec hasn’t hit its stride. And while most are hitting the $ 1000 mark (for base models, and with a few exceptions) the valuable perks they add in portability and battery life have made them a few fans – including us. [...]