Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Ultrabook will fail

Unless price drops below $500. Although Apple can sell stuff at 2-3 times of reasonable prices, no way other companies can.

For example, Staples is clearancing 2.4GHz i5 HP dm4-2191us laptop for $300. At 14" and 4.4 lb, this laptop is only slightly heavier and thicker than a 13.3" ultrabook priced around $1000. It has brushed metal case, runs extremely cold (yes not even warm) and really up to 9 hours. As you still need a bag for any ultrabook, does it really matter what's in it, being an ultrabook or extra 1 lb like this 14" HP DM4-2191us?

Actually, if a thing still needs a bag to carry, I'd rather it to be a little larger and heavier, if more comfortable for my eyes.

And why you need an i5-class laptop instead of an Atom-class netbook? One reason is for video editing and encoding, about 7 or 12 times faster than dual or single core Atom. Then the 64GB or so SSD found in ultrabooks is too small for that kind of tasks. All ultrabooks still have a CPU fan, what's the point to put a quiet SSD in them?

You see, this 14" HP DM4-2191us can sit on an airplane table and still leave room for cups. Yes, the left and front edges are still within the table, the camera was too close to show though. The 13.3" Macbook Air is sure more elegent but won't be any more comfortable on the same table. Oh ya, can you be brave enough to put a cup of coffee beside a $$$$ ultrabook like this?

P.S.: The battery life of HP DM4-2191us depends fully on CPU load. If CPU runs at full speed like x264 encoding, battery lasts only 2 hours or so. For normal use on WiFi, I get 7 to 9 hours. As always, I removed all non-Windows services and auto start-ups to get the best performance and battery life.

P.P.S.: Other dm4 models are quite different. Some have lit keyboards, some do not have metal surfaces for palm rest (feels warm while the 2191us feels cold).

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