Ultrabooks got off to a slow start -- but thanks to new Intel chips, Windows 8 and creative form factors, 2013 might be the breakout year.
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Ron DeLine, Intel's director of marketing for the Ultrabook program, DeLine said that Ultrabooks have evolved thanks to the April launch of Intel's third generation core technology, otherwise known as the Ivy Bridge platform. The chips cut power consumption to 17W, less than half what the previous generation drew. This reduction enabled increasingly slimmer designs, such as the svelte Lenovo described on the previous slide.
The fourth generation, or Haswell, chips were introduced at Intel Developer Forum (IDF) in September, and DeLine said they will "spur another wave of innovation" that will "get into even cooler form factors."
How will the upcoming processors fulfill DeLine's predictions? Only time (and OEMs) will tell, but better power management will be at least one factor.
Intel claimed at IDF that Haswell chips running at 8W can equal the performance of the twice-as-hot Ivy Bridge models. Haswell can also boost its consumption to 17W, at which point it achieves substantial performance improvements that make the current models look outdated, especially in terms of graphics processing.
If buyers aren't moved by current Ultrabooks, in other words, they might change their minds once Haswell-equipped models begin appearing in early 2013.
Server Market SplitsvilleJust because the server market's in the doldrums doesn't mean innovation has ceased. Far from it -- server technology is enjoying the biggest renaissance since the dawn of x86 systems. But the primary driver is now service providers, not enterprises.
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