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Intel says competitors to Apple can use the CPU found in the MacBook Air; 45nm CPU refresh coming this Fall

When Apple unveiled the MacBook Air most every technophile stifled a lustful moan.  However, the paltry specifications included in the Air leave something to be desired -- even to the most ardent of Steve Jobs protégés.

PC manufacturers expect to fill the gap. InformationWeek reports that two PC makers will release similarly size Windows systems using the miniaturized Core 2 Duo processor found in the svelte MacBook Air. 

The low-voltage Core 2 Duo processor found in the MacBook Air is not present in any other computer to date.  Some would claim Intel designed the processor specifically for Apple, though Intel roadmaps designate the ultra-low voltage processor as "publicly available" to any system integrator. 

The low-voltage Core 2 Duo played a big part in the ability for Apple to make the Air so thin. The processor is built on the older Intel Merom processor family, though the "mini" version is 60% smaller that other Merom processors.

The 1.6 GHz Core 2 Duo certainly won't set any speed records.   In fact, the 65nm processor first got its debut at 1.8 GHz in 2006.  Similar performing 65nm Yonah processors at 1.8 GHz debuted almost a year before that. 

Intel announced its 45nm processor line last month, just a week before the MacBook Air announcement.  However, those interested in sacrificing performance for slim footprints won't have to wait long: Intel's corporate roadmap claims 45nm versions of Penryn, the current processor generation, will be available this fall.

Even if PC manufacturers incorporate the mini Merom processor in upcoming notebooks before this Fall,  Apple will certainly opt for the 45nm processor in the next-generation MacBook Air. 

Intel has not released the names of the PC manufacturers anticipating to release slim PCs based on the "mini" Merom processors.

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Why so slim?
By Zoomer on 2/1/2008 8:13:49 PM , Rating: 1
What's the utility of having such a slim laptop?

It doesn't make sense. Thin yes, but this thin? It's not like it's going to be stuffed into your shirt pocket.

RE: Why so slim?
By DigitalFreak on 2/1/2008 8:52:38 PM , Rating: 3
It's a Mac. Form over Function.

RE: Why so slim?
By audiomaniaca on 2/3/2008 11:21:14 AM , Rating: 2
It's a Mac. Useless.

RE: Why so slim?
By qt on 2/4/2008 12:48:38 PM , Rating: 2
You have to give it to Apple, they continue releasing products that consumers want. Only an electronics consumer would buy a cell phone with an internal battery that needs servicing to be changed. My guess is that an electronics consumer will also buy a laptop with an internal battery that will supposedly need servicing to be changed.

But then again an electronics consumer is not a real user, they are a wannabe. Real users will not accept a compromise that puts form over function. Real users have our convictions in place and we demand that our computers meet our minimum specifications.

But then again, this is just my opinion and I could be wrong. Better still, I'll let my money talk for me and it won't be a Mac in my backpack and there will be no iphone in my pocket.

Disclaimer: Owner of a 5G 80GB iPod and a CRT iMac.

RE: Why so slim?
By SoCalBoomer on 2/6/2008 6:55:00 PM , Rating: 2
If it would run Windows (so I could run OneNote - haven't found a Mac equivalent yet. . .) I'd get one in a hurry.

I use a similar Dell X1 right now specifically for OneNote at meetings, etc. and I find it indisposable. . .glad the X1 is very similar in size and weight to the Mac Air. . .but was also quite a bit less expensive. . .

so maybe I wouldn't get it. But I'd want it!

RE: Why so slim?
By oab on 2/8/2008 9:22:35 PM , Rating: 2
Apple Boot-Camp:
VMware Fusion:

Why, three programs that will let you run OneNote on a mac.

RE: Why so slim?
By PandaBear on 2/1/2008 8:54:11 PM , Rating: 2
It helps if you need to bring it around in a back pack, but I think people that need to bring a laptop around in a back pack won't spend $1800 for a laptop.

RE: Why so slim?
By 9nails on 2/1/2008 9:00:14 PM , Rating: 5
For $1800, I think I'll just get 2 or 3 regular laptop's and leave them all over the places that I go!

RE: Why so slim?
By MADAOO7 on 2/2/2008 3:29:14 AM , Rating: 2
I think people that need to bring a laptop around in a back pack won't spend $1800 for a laptop.
change the word "back pack" in that last phrase to "briefcase" and you'll realize exactly who this laptop targets.

RE: Why so slim?
By mcnabney on 2/2/2008 1:38:03 PM , Rating: 2
Oh yes. The business market is definitely going to ditch everything and go with an Apple. Ultralightweights, and yes even thin and wide laptops like this, have been around for a long time. Nothing new here except Steve Jobs.

RE: Why so slim?
By oab on 2/8/2008 9:23:31 PM , Rating: 2
Not that thin.

RE: Why so slim?
By tjr508 on 2/1/2008 9:36:39 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. I have always hated bulky laptops, but I believe the original 12" and 15" powerbook g4s were just about the perfect size. Any smaller... you start to wonder if pressing a book against it will break it in two.

RE: Why so slim?
By Protozero on 2/2/2008 12:42:00 AM , Rating: 3
Hey, this anorexic labtop makes all the others look obese. This can't be good for the labtop population.

RE: Why so slim?
By AntDX316 on 2/4/08, Rating: -1
RE: Why so slim?
By BikeDude on 2/3/2008 12:42:31 PM , Rating: 2
Slim is good in a few cases. I have two different backpacks: LowePro NatureTrekker and the PhotoTrekker (neither of which are very cheap btw). I use the big one when going on safari (with my 500mm lens) and the other for lesser adventures. But both backpacks have one thing in common: After fitting my photo equipment inside, there's really not much space left for a laptop. Unless the laptop happens to be _thin_.

Luckily, the standard MacBook Pro will just about fit. Not comfortably, but I cannot live without a DVD burner, so the MacBook Air doesn't matter to me.

That said, these days I'm probably better off carrying my laptop outside the backpack anyway, seeing as airport security makes this a requirement. Still nice to fit it all inside the backpack though, at least until I've checked in my other luggage.

But IMO, a better question is: Why does a laptop have to be so thick?

RE: Why so slim?
By Calin on 2/4/2008 3:59:22 AM , Rating: 2
Because all the internal components have a certain volume. Also, when using heat-producing equipment, you must have air channels over to their heat sinks. Again, fans in the laptops occupy a certain volume.
Batteries also have volume (and usually comes a quarter of an inch thick). Add space for the keyboard, for the hard drive (2.5" per a quarter inch thick).

RE: Why so slim?
By joemoedee on 2/4/2008 8:26:52 AM , Rating: 5
What's the utility of having such a slim laptop?

Apple is targeting a specific market with it. Just listen to the music in the commercial, do you think it's targeted to the hardcore gamer/tech?

It's a niche market, which Apple is really good at targeting. Inasmuch as an Alienware, Falcon NW, Velocity Micro, etc target the gamer market. Lenovo targets the business consumer.

Dell/HP try to be all things to all people, which is not the approach Apple takes. (Outside of the iPod, I suppose)

The business market is pretty entrenched, as is the gamer market. The market that has a lot of growth room is the casual user. (Teens/Females/Starbucks patrons/etc) Apple, traditionally, has done well in this market since the first iMac. It's only logical that they bring out a product like this.

This is a great laptop for the casual market. Style matters to them, as well as the "wow" factor. It has both, I don't think many people could deny it that. Would I buy it for myself? Probably not. Would I buy one for my wife? Maybe.

We're not the market. Get over it. =]

RE: Why so slim?
By xti on 2/4/2008 3:59:02 PM , Rating: 4
We're not the market. Get over it. =]

That needs to go near the top of every article right next to 'dont forget to comb your hair today'

RE: Why so slim?
By chrisld on 2/5/2008 10:26:12 AM , Rating: 2
I find it incredible that so many people complain about this product, declaring that they won't buy one, it's not powerful enough, too expensive etc..

In the first place. If you are so disinterested in the product why do you take the time to tell us so?

Secondly, no-one claimed this product is a panacea. If you don't care about style, have shallow pockets or need more power then no-one is forcing you to buy one.

When the iPhone was announced everyone said it was too expensive and incorporated no new features and they were largely right. My HTC device from 2 years previous has virtually the same hardware features. Did the iPhone sell though? Yes, it did. Why is that? A certain group of people want products that look stylish and have a good interface. Those people are willing to pay a premium for such products.

Where I live a lot of people drive pick-up trucks. I don't like pick-up trucks and will not buy one but I don't find it necessary to approach people on the street and explain to them why they should get something else instead. It is a narrow-minded person who doesn't understand that other people have different needs and desires to themselves.

As much as I can appreciate your intellectual argument that this product is not for everyone, the fact remains that there is a market for it. This is not a product anyone needs but it is one they want.

RE: Why so slim?
By Scware on 2/6/2008 12:05:10 AM , Rating: 2
I think I know why apple like to all their products so sleek and small. Because about the only good use for them is to shove them up your @**!

RE: Why so slim?
By INeedCache on 2/6/2008 11:01:03 PM , Rating: 2
I can't help but think about the first picture of one these that gets sat on and cracked in half.

"If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion." -- Scientology founder L. Ron. Hubbard

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