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E-tailer slashes up to a third off poorly selling ultrabook models

As Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) is looking to bolster the reputation of Windows 8 and its recently-released successor Windows 8.1, Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) today is offering a one day deal on a small assortment of Windows 8.1 devices at fire sale prices.
 
The deals include three devices certified as Ultrabooks by Intel Corp. (INTC) -- the Dell XPS 12 12.4-inch convertible 2-in-1 Touchscreen tablet/laptop ($680 USD, 32 percent off, normally $1000 USD), the Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd. (KSC:005930) ATIV Book 5 14-inch laptop (Core i5 edition) ($600 USD, 33 percent off, normally $900 USD), and the ATIV Book 5 14-inch laptop (Core i3 edition) ($500, 29 percent off, normally $700 USD).
 
Intel's ultrabook form factor has struggled in sales, falling short of the chipmakers bold growth predictions for the ultralight, ultrathin form factor devices.  The ultrabooks struggles have paralleled and somewhat overlapped those of partner Microsoft's Windows 8/8.1.

Samsung Ativ Book 5
Samsung Ativ Book 5 (w/ Touchscreen, Windows 8.1

Key reasons for weak ultrabook sales have been overly high prices, underwhelming graphics (partially due to Intel's sluggishness in pushing Iris Pro product to market), and less than spectacular battery life.  Intel has vowed to get more aggressive on pricing and we may be seeing a peek at that.
 
In addition to the Ultrabooks there's also the Lenovo Group, Ltd.'s (HKG:0992) IdeaPad S210 11.6-inch touchscreen laptop ($300 USD, 29 percent off, usually $420 USD) and ASUSTek Computer Inc. (TPE:2357) 1015E-DS01 10.1-Inch laptop with no touchscreen ($240 USD, 20 percent off, normally $300 USD).
Lenovo Ideapad S210
Lenovo Ideapad S210 11.6-inch. (w/ Touchscreen, Windows 8.1)

To be clear, it's not been uncommon in the past decade to see laptops sell with small discounts around the holiday season from top retailers.  OEMs tend to bake a little "wiggle room" into their price points by overcharging on things like RAM and storage upgrades.  But such price cuts are typically modest -- 15 to 20 percent at most on the high end and 10 percent or less on the low end.  To see these kinds of massive price cuts, speaks to the historic decline in PC sales.

Indeed, ASUS in its recent quarterly report expressed that it no longer had confidence on Windows driving its laptop sales, and it would become the latest to produce a "Chromebook", which carries a free Linux-based Google Inc. (GOOG) operating system.

Sources: Amazon [1], [2], [3], [4]



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RE: Ultrabooks make no sense.
By Monkey's Uncle on 11/25/2013 2:31:15 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't be caught dead owning one. I have far more respect for the money I earn than that.


RE: Ultrabooks make no sense.
By Solandri on 11/25/2013 3:21:15 PM , Rating: 4
I wouldn't be caught dead without one. I have far more respect for my shoulder than that. The price premium over a regular (heavier) laptop is about an extra day's work for me. Well worth it for years of less shoulder strain since I'm frequently out in the field.

Different people have different priorities. Go figure.


RE: Ultrabooks make no sense.
By Monkey's Uncle on 11/25/2013 3:25:23 PM , Rating: 2
Different priorities indeed. Ultrabooks just don't fit my priorities.


RE: Ultrabooks make no sense.
By kmmatney on 11/25/2013 3:52:05 PM , Rating: 2
As a frequent traveler use a computer bag with wheels. The ultrabook spec is about 3 pounds - it seems like they should be able to make a 17" laptop at around 4 pounds. My Dell 17R Special Edition (which performs really well) weighs in at 7.4 pounds - it shouldn't be too hard to top that.


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