MacBooks and Ultrabooks to Rule This Year

January 3, 2012, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

This year, the laptop segment is expected to cruise through good times. As you have already heard, many a company out there is gearing up to bring in their new Ultrabooks. We would for sure get to see a lot of MacBooks and Ultrabooks in the laptop market this year.

Ever wondered what the market would be like over the next 360-odd days? Here we have for you a small outline of the various laptops that are expected to make their debut.

Let’s start with Apple. From the stables of the iGiants will roll out the MacBook Air design theme. A 15-inch MacBook Air model without an optical drive is also in the list.

Speculations suggest that the new MacBooks will be coming with a 2880 x 1800 display resolution. This could be seen as welcome as the current 15-inch Windows laptops, such as the HP EliteBook 8560p sport only 1600 x 900. The 15-inch MacBook Pro currently in the market offers a maximum resolution of 1680 x 1050 pixels.

Under the hood, the new 15-inch MacBook Air is rumored to carry Intel’s IvyBridge processor, Nvidia’s latest graphics chips and USB 3.0 ports. In 2013, Haswell, Intel’s first mainstream system-on-a-chip is expected to make its debut.

It will be interesting to see that the upcoming MacBooks will be powered by Intel Haswell or by the Apple’s A series chip.

Rumors suggest that a 1.3-pound Apple laptop driven by an A6 or A7 chip will be seen along with the powerful models sporting the higher-performance Haswell processors in 2013.

Meanwhile, it is believed that Windows 8 will be the important factor for products from other manufacturers.

This year, along with the Ultrabook models with touchscreens, we can expect hybrid devices too, similar to the Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime.

The new class of laptops is believed to be gearing up to sport Intel Ivy Bridge processors that are more powerful than the ARM-based hybrids. The only thing that is worrying tech enthusiasts is high price the Ultrabooks could have on their tags.

In 2011, the $699 Toshiba Portege Z835 was one low priced Ultrabook model. We need to expect that the price will be going up higher in 2012. One of the best examples is the $899 priced HP Folio 13. It will come equipped with a Core i5 processor, 128GB solid-state drive, USB 3.0 and a powerful battery.

Sony’s Vaio Z series VPCZ216GX/L may be considered as another ultra-expensive Ultrabook. The brushed aluminum 0.66-inch laptop sports a 13.1-inch screen with 1920 x 1080 resolution, 256GB solid-state drive, Core i7 processor, and an option for a dock packing an AMD Radeon HD 6650M graphics chip.

Now tell us which one would you go for in a crowded Ultrabook mart?

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