The Asus VivoBook U38N may look like an ultrabook, but it doesn’t qualify as one for a simple reason: It has a quad-core AMD A8 processor, while Intel owns the trademark for the word “ultrabook.”
Aside from the processor, the Asus U38N is almost everything you’d want from a decent ultrabook.
The laptop features a 13.3 inch IPS touchscreen display, Windows 8 software, up to 4GB of RAM, and a 2.5 inch drive bay for a 128GB solid state disk or a 500GB hard drive.
Asus also includes 3 USB 3.0 ports, HDMI, and mini VGA ports. The Asus U38N features 802.11n WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0 and has Bang & Olufsen audio.
The notebook has a 48Whr battery which Asus says should be good for up to 5 hours of run time. The Asus U38N measures 12.8″ x 8.9″ x 0.7″ and weighs 3.4 pounds.
Now for the bad news: The memory is soldered to the motherboard, so you won’t be able to easily upgrade it yourself.
Swedish retailer Komplett is already selling the VivoBook U38N for the equivalent of $1200 US… but the laptop will probably be cheaper if and when it goes on sale in the US. According to that product page, the notebook has a 1920 x 1080 pixel display, but the official Asus page for the U38N shows a lower resolution 1366 x 768 pixel display.
Asus might be selling different versions of this laptop in different countries.