Feeds

Ultrabook sales 'falling short of targets'

'Never buy version 1.0' rule in play

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Those slim, svelte, sexy ultrabooks that Intel has been flogging may be having a hard time finding buyers due to their relatively high prices.

So say sources speaking with the Taiwanese market-watchers at DigiTimes, which reported on Monday that both Acer and Asustek, which had expected to sell between 200,000 and 300,000 of the li'l fellow this year, have revised their sales estimates to about 100,000 units each.

According to DigiTimes, the 11.6- and 13.6-in Asustek ultrabooks are available in Taiwan for around $1,200 and $1,675, and the $1,000 model that's available in the US is not available in Taiwan.

Those prices are a far cry from that of the ultrabook's predecessor and archetype, Apple's MacBook Air, which starts at $999 and $1,299 for models with the same size displays as Asustek's skinny notebooks.

The 13.3-inch Acer Aspire S3 beats the 13.3-inch MacBook Air in the US by a full four hundred bucks, but DigiTimes notes that in Taiwan it runs $1,101, shinking that margin shrinks to less than one hundred.

Actually, DigiTimes confuses the price of the 13.3-inch MacBook Air with that of its 11.6-inch sibling, but we'll note that and move on.

The ultrabook concept – Ultrabook, actually, since Intel has trademarked the name – was first introduced this May by Intel CEO Paul Otellini at an investors' gathering. The light, slim notebooks were later described by Otellini as "a very holistic approach to moving the entire market to a different kind of form factor."

Intel has a lot invested in the ultrabook – in cash as well as hope. For example, the company has opend a $300m Intel Capital Ultrabook Fund to entice partners to join the ultrabook campaign.

Intel is not the only company who is hoping that ultrabooks will increase the sales of its products. Microsoft, buffeted by the tablet canibalization effect, has said that it hopes ultrabooks will boost Windows sales.

Intel has said that holiday shoppers will find ultrabooks on store shelves later this year, but as The Reg has pointed out, smart shoppers might do well to wait until the skinny fellows come equipped with Intel's 22nm "Ivy Bridge" processor next year.

Keep your eye on what sylphlike notebooks might appear at this January's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas – that's where, for example, Dell and HP may introduce their Ivy Bridge ultrabooks – although recent reports point to delays.

And if sales of current Acer and Asustek ultrabooks remain low, you might be able to snap up one of those first-generation models on the cheap at a post-holiday fire sale. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro
Cheapest models given new processors, more RAM
4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles
Have your say with Ofcom now, before Freeview becomes Feeview
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
YES, iPhones ARE getting slower with each new release of iOS
Old hardware doesn't get any faster with new software
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.