The Ultrabook is the technological buzz word of the moment. It is somewhere in between a Netbook and a laptop with pretentions of offering the portability of a tablet. It also offers a laptop experience in a much smaller unit and designed for those who travel a lot and need the portability alongside a ‘full’ computing experience.
For all of the positives, tablets still cannot offer a complete computing experience for advanced users and there are many tasks that require full multi-tasking and larger screens. Web development, software development, graphics and so much more works better on a laptop and the Ultrabook could become the perfect balance between tablets and Netbooks in the future.
In a market crowded with mobile devices that are so incredibly powerful, it could be difficult to see where the Ultrabook will fit in. Some smartphones, like the Galaxy Note, push the boundaries of what people consider a smartphone to be and the majority of high-end devices are capable of undertaking 95% of the tasks people normally use laptops for. Tablets make these tasks easier and again can adequately undertake 95% of normal tasks, but neither offers the ‘complete’ computing experience that full desktop operating systems can.
The Ultrabook is designed to be the ultra-portable that does everything you need, like the MacBook Air, but the pricing may be seen as a barrier to entry by some. With prices nearing £1,000, similar to the Air, this could preclude many from making the jump and confine it to a niche sector.
Ultimately, however, the Ultrabook is probably the genre of device most suited to the needs of modern-day professionals and as the prices come down, we could well end up in a world of tablets, smartphones, laptops, desktops and Ultrabooks. There is no reason why they can’t all co-exist and choice can only be a good thing.