ultrabooks

Apple’s answer to Windows 8 ultrabooks: a $799 MacBook Air?

Windows 8 is coming, and Microsoft isn’t the only company hoping that its newest operating system is a hit with consumers.

Chip giant Intel is betting big on ultrabooks — thin, lightweight laptops similar to the MacBook Air — and is investing big bucks to ensure that a slew of them hit store shelves as soon as Windows 8 is released later this year. The good news for consumers on a budget: some of those ultrabooks could cost as little as $699 if manufacturers have their way.

Windows 8 expected to debut in October: report

With tablet devices playing a larger and larger role in the world of consumer computing, it’s no surprise that Microsoft has high hopes for its ability to compete in the tablet space. But right now there’s one big problem: it doesn’t have a tablet OS.

That will change with the release of Windows 8, an OS that has been designed for touch and which may contain the biggest changes to Windows since the company’s flagship product was released in 1985.

2011 was a bad year for the PC

Q4, which includes the holiday shopping season, was good to many industries last year – but the PC industry wasn’t one of them.

According to IDC, some of the biggest PC manufacturers, including HP, Dell and Acer, recorded declines in sales.

Performance was so bad that IDC described 2011 as “the second-worst year in history” for PCs, as total sales declined 5% from 2010.

Is the netbook dead?

It may be hard to remember, but just a few short years ago consumers were snapping up ‘netbooks‘, those laptop lookalikes that were as affordable as they were small, at a rapid pace.

How rapid? 5.6m of them were sold in the third quarter of 2008 alone.

Android soars while Chrome OS falters

As Google announced the launch of its new Google Music service, the world’s largest search engine also revealed that the number of active Android devices has surpassed 200m.

And that number is growing rapidly, with Google now activating more than 550,000 devices each day.

Is Apple’s competitive pricing a threat to its success?

Apple’s rise in the past decade is one of the business world’s great success stories. The company, which in the late 1990s looked like it was on its deathbed, is now one of the richest businesses in the world.

And it has a fairly unique story: as the prices for computers and consumer electronics devices have plummeted, Apple has been able to sell more units of its products than its competitors despite the fact that its products have generally been priced higher.