Asus UX21

This summer Intel rolled out a new platform for thin and light computers called ultrabooks. Basically an ultrabook is a notebook that weighs less than 3 pounds, measures less than 0.8 inches thick, and costs less than $1000.

Oh yeah, and since Intel came up with the idea, they pretty much have to have the latest Intel mobile processors and Intel also wants PC makers to use solid state disks (to improve performance, keep heat generation down, and save space).

Asus is one of the first companies expected to sell ultrabooks. The company will hold an event on October 11th to launch its new line of ultraportable notebooks. I’ve kind of been wondering why Asus is referring to the event as a “reveal” though, since Asus already introduced the UX21 and UX31 ultrabooks way back in June.

But Notebook Italia has a little insight into the event. Apparently Asus is sending out invitations to an event in Italy which refers to a new product called the “Zenbook.”

The Asus UX21 is expected to have an 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixel display, an Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processor, measure just 0.67 inches thick and weigh 2.4 pounds.

The UX31 is expected to have a 13.3 inch, 1600 x 900 pixel display, an Intel Core i7 CPU, and weigh about 2.9 pounds.

It’s not clear at this point if one or both of these products will be dubbed as a Zenbook, or if Asus has a different device up its sleeve. It is interesting to see Asus shifting the focus away from the “ultrabook” buzzword that belongs to Intel by giving its upcoming products a different name. I wouldn’t be surprised if other computer makers follow suit before launching their own ultrabooks thin and light laptops.

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5 replies on “Will Asus rebrand its ultrabooks as “Zenbooks?””

  1. Brad, is the Samsung Series 3, namely the NP350 notebook an ultrabook?
    Cause it weighs 1.4KGs and its slim as well whilst having a 12.5 inch screen. By the way Brad, do you know what capacity battery it uses? Since the battery is built in, I have no idea what battery capacity it uses.

    1. Nope. It weighs more than 3 pounds, measures 1.1 inch thick, and I have a feeling it fails to meet Intel’s standards in a few other ways.

      But from an end user perspective… does it matter? Probably not. Like the HP Pavilion dm1 and Asus Eee PC 1215B, the Samsung Series 3 11.6 inch and 12.5 inch notebooks are close enough to ultrabooks that I can’t really imagine paying the premium to get an ultrabook instead of one of these more affordable alternatives.

  2. Companies usually don’t name their products by the product category.  Like no company names their netbooks netbooks for example.

    Giving it their own name helps name the series of products and identify that version with the company instead of the industry.

    While Asus UX21 and UX31 have already been shown off.  Asus may either be showing off some unique customizations they’ll be offering or revealing what the Ivy Bridge update coming out next year will do to those models.

    If the later then it could also be a tactic to better promote those new models and separate them from the previous Sandy Bridge versions.  So consumers can more easily realize that they’ll be getting a better deal with the new models.

    Alternatively, they can be going for a Asian specific version and making versions of Ultrabooks with features like a bamboo casing, custom art, and similar enhancements that’s more popular in their Asian markets.

  3. “…since Intel came up with the idea…” Intel just came up with the Ultrabook name. I think Intel got the idea from Apple. I’m not saying Apple was the first to sell ultrabook type computers, but they sell a lot more than those who came before them. Those sales numbers got Intel’s attention.

    1. Agree.  Toshiba (R400-R600), Panasonic and Sony have all been making these types of laptops for a long time.  Apple made it popular and Intel is trying to push down the price to where it is marketable. 

      The Sony Z11 came out 18 months ago, and is still probably a superior laptop to the Ultrabooks you will see.  But bringing that type of laptop down under 1K and still making it compelling is the challenge

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