Hybrid designs are “the next big thing,” Intel’s top wig Paul Otellini predicts.
At Intel’s annual investor meeting, CEO Paul Otellini showed off a few new Ultrabooks that have a nifty party trick: they convert into tablets.
Otellini sees the Ultrabook as an innovation that redefined the traditional PC. Currently there are over 110 different Ultrabook designs with most of them built around Intel’s new Ivy Bridge processor.
Intel’s Ultrabook category united the industry by setting a series of benchmarks that different manufactures strived to achieve. With the hardware united by Intel, and Microsoft’s Windows 8 harvesting an ecosystem savvy on smartphones, tablets and computers, the industry has been prepped to produce devices that borrow attributes from different categories seamlessly.
This includes Ultrabooks with tablet sensibilities and smartphones that merge with tabs (think Asus’ PadFone). One of the Ultrabooks displayed was Lenovo’s IdeaPad Yogo, an Ultrabook with a hinge that rotates some 360 degrees, granting touch access to its 13.3 inch screen.
Manufacturers will be motivated to experiment with different form factors as it will allow them to differentiate their offering from rivals. Otellini is professing these hybrid devices as “the next big thing,” and that tablets and Ultrabooks will exist alongside them.
Intel aims to be a ubiquitous player in all forms of computing, and their understanding of which includes smartphones. Currently they are working closely with Google to develop Android devices that run on x86 devices and is cultivating relationships with phone manufacturers, including Motorola.
Windows 8 tablets will also be found in Intel’s product portfolio, and Otellini believes Intel will be a more competitive option than its ARM rivals due to their peripheral compatibility and Intel’s manufacturing advantages. PCMag claim there’s over 20 tablet designs from 10 system markers using Intel chips for Windows 8 tablets.
These products converge at what Otellini calls the “compute continuum,” where Intel’s architecture provides a single programming model for multiple platforms. Intel is on track to ship over 2 million Ivy Bridge processors per week by this quarter’s end, and the company anticipates to outsell its previous 32nm Sandy Bridge processor by the fall (this Spring.)