Here’s a head scratcher.

Intel on Wednesday said it would invest US$300 million in companies that develop new technologies for Ultrabooks, a class of thin and light laptops promoted as an alternative to tablet PCs.

This is totally weird to me. Why would they want to invest in an alternative to tablets?

The company said the devices would be a new type of laptop with “tablet-like” capabilities such as instant on, touchscreens and batteries that last all day.

Laptops and tablets have different characteristics and Ultrabooks are an attempt to harmoniously merge the two, said Greg Welch, segment director for the mobile client platforms at Intel, in an interview last week.

On an Ultrabook, people will be switching between using a cursor and touching the screen without thinking about it, he said.

Here’s the part that made me laugh Intel may look to price Ultrabook at around $800 or lower.

The first Ultrabooks later this year will not have touch capabilities, but will boot quickly and be always connected, to continuously receive e-mail and Facebook updates, said Kevin Sellers, vice president of investor relations at Intel, during a presentation earlier this week.

Starting in 2012, Ultrabooks will get touchscreens that can also swivel or slide out. They could be used in full PC mode and then converted into a tablet-like device to watch movies, for example, like convertible tablets today.

“Starting next year with our Ivy Bridge product line and with Windows 8 is when you’ll start to see tablet form factor, tablet capability integrated,” Sellers said. “This is the importance of combining this technology with something like Windows 8, which will give you the ability to do both.”

Windows 8 will be Microsoft’s first operating system designed for touch interfaces.

Maybe it’s just me but I think that these companies should focus on making BETTER tablets. A laptop is a laptop and a tablet is a tablet – they do different things and are for different segments.

I can see experimenting but 300 million?

You can read more here…

About the Author

Onuora Amobi is the Founder and VP of Digital Marketing at Learn About The Web Inc. Onuora has more than a decade of information security, project management and management consulting experience. He has specialized in the management and deployment of large scale ERP client/server systems.

In addition to being a former Microsoft MVP and the founder and editor of, he is the CEO of a Pasadena based online marketing education startup - Learn About The Web Inc. ( and The Redmond Cloud (

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  • John Salizar

    You’re right man, It can be 300 million or 300 billion. They need to focus on catching Apple and stop trying to reinvent the wheel..

    And $800? they have to be dreamin..

    • Konanyao

      No they should not focus on catching Apple.
      They should focus on building innovative added value devices.
      I am not too sure Ultrabook are what i would called inovative devices but at least Intel is trying to strongly improve laptops and it is interesting things.
      Moreover Ultrabooks would be perfect devices for Windows 8 as they would take full advantage of the dual mode of this O.S.

  • 1234568

    I really don’t agree that Intel should  focus most their efforts on tablets. Currently tablets have many advantages. They are lighter, faster to boot, have better battery life and with the amount of keyboard accessories on the market can also be used for work. If the traditional laptop form factor is to survive then it has to address all these concerns. As Intel’s revenue is so dependent on laptop sales they cannot leave laptops to stagnate and allow tablets to steal all the thunder, especially as Intel doesn’t yet have a firm footing in the tablet market. Consequently we have this new category of  ”Ultrabooks'” being developed. I welcome Ultrabooks as ultimately they will provide superior performance in the traditional laptop form factor, which is a form factor many consumers prefer and use every day. This is not to say that Intel  should make no attempt in the tablet market. Ivy Bridge is due to debut soon and this chip has been developed with tablets in mind from day one. If I was calling the shots I would probably play my cards just as Intel has.

    • Onuora Amobi

      Well, maybe you have a point. Always open to a different opinion…


    • Konanyao

      I agree with most of what you say. Though i think that Intel should not try to push slate like Ipad but more efficient and appealing Tablet PC. And this apparently what they try to do with Ultrabooks.

  • Konanyao

    There can be different kind of tablets as there are different kind of people with different tastes.
    Some prefer extremly ease though limited tablets out of the box like the iPad.
    When some prefer powerful and productive out of the box Tablet also known as Tablet PC.
    I personnaly would use only tablet which can be connected or plugued with dock expanding their capabilities.
    Ultrabook is according to me an evolution and a next generation of Tablet PC.
    It is quite smart from Intel as such devices would be able to fully take advantage of Windows 8 as by being an efficient Tablet PC, it would enable the user to use either mode of this O.S whenever he/she needs it.
    And at least Intel is not stupidily just trying to copy Apple but to come with a relatively innovative solution.
    Trying to catch up with Apple is a silly idea as it will waste the money and time of any company which tries to do so. What companies should focus on is to either individually or collectively , significant evolutions of PC (both desktop and laptops) and other added value and well thought concepts.
    Trying to catch up would be jumping directly in the Apple trap and enable Apple to either keep one or two steps ahead and/or to sue any company close to catch up with silly patents (cf what happens to Samsung).
    Though now Apple is so powerful and has such power over mediaand collective mind that only a consortium of companies can efficiently compete with it. And compete not by playing catch up but coming with inovative and added value solutions.

  • Billy Moffat

    If an ultrabook down the line is a super thin and light laptop with a touch screen, in what universe is that not better than a tablet? Sure they’ll never be able to get it as light or thin as a tablet with the attached keyboard, but if they can get within 12mm and 1kg, then if it’s able to run an OS like Windows 8 that works with both and doesn’t feel like a sand-boxed toy – why would you think they’re silly for going there?

    I love my tablet, but trying to program on it (which is what I spend a lot of time doing) is painful to the point of torture. Even web browsing is a bit of a pain with more than a few tabs open. My fingers are on the large side I suppose.

    Tablets might be the future, but until touch interfaces become intuitive and versatile enough to replace a keyboard and mouse/touchpad (and I can’t see that happening for a few years at best – voice technology will come first) you really need to stop this whole “anybody who doesn’t go 100% behind tablets is an idiot” campaign you seem to have going on this site.