Ultra-Thin PC Laptops 'Ultrabooks' Hitting Stores Now

Dennis Faas's picture

There's one market Apple virtually owns but everyone seems to forget about: the ultra-powerful and ultra-portable PC market.

The Cupertino-based firm's MacBook Air has really dominated the ultra-portable laptop segment of the computer market, but that may be about to change with the release of comparable 'Ultrabooks' from PC makers Acer and Asus.

Acer S3 UltraBook Weights Less than 3 Pounds

First, Acer's offering. Coming in at just $899, the company's S3 Ultrabook weighs less than three pounds but still manages to pack in a 20GB SSD for Windows 7, a 320GB HDD for all other storage, 4GB RAM, and a ULV Core i5 processor.

The display is a not-too-squinty 13.3-inches but is limited to 1366x768 resolution (meaning that it won't do 1080p or play Blu-Ray movies in their highest resolution). There's also a 1.3 megapixel webcam onboard. (Source: tested.com)

Acer Focuses on Performance and Portability

Most impressive is Acer's S3 Ultrabook offering, especially it's endurance. It's said the device can last for about six hours while being used, and when in sleep mode could stay alive for 50 days and still 'wake up' in just six seconds.

Perhaps the only downer about Acer's S3 is the inclusion of a sub-par Intel Integrated HD 3000 graphics card. It won't exactly blaze through games and video, but it should do the trick, nonetheless.

Asus Offers Two Zenbook Options

Similar to the Acer Ultrabook hardware is Asus' Zenbook ultra portable laptops.

Earlier this week, Asus showed off two versions of its Zenbook; the first uses an 11-inch screen and weighs just 2.4 pounds while running Windows 7 on an Intel Core i5 processor.

A second version of the Zenbook employs a 13-inch screen with a higher resolution: 1600x900. Both Zenbooks feature 4GB of RAM and either can be upgraded to a Core i7 processor, if desired. The 11-inch model ships with a 128GB SSD (solid state disk), while the 13-inch model can be boosted to a 256GB SSD. (Source: arstechnica.com)

The base version of the 11-inch Zenbook ships for a whopping $999, though adding display size and other features or components will see that price rise substantially.

Both the Zenbook and the S3 Ultrabook should be available right now.

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