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Intel AMD Hardware

Ultra-Thin Laptops To Be Next Intel-AMD Battleground 125

FinalAnkleHealer sends along an IBTimes article proposing that $500 ultra-thin laptops, capable of multitasking and editing multimedia content, could be the next market contested by Intel and AMD. "AMD partnered with Hewlett-Packard Co. in January to launch the Pavilion dv2. Intel launched its rival CULV (Consumer Ultra Low Voltage) chip this month and Acer Inc. and Asustek Computer Inc were among those that demonstrated laptops based on the new technology at the Computex trade show in Taipei. ... With more people gravitating toward mobile and wireless technology, consumers want smaller laptops — and most of those people would prefer doing more than surfing the Web, which the no-frills netbooks now excel at. ... Acer, the first company to introduce a cheap Intel-powered CULV laptop, expects revenue from that segment to account for 15 percent of its total sales by the end of 2009. Asustek, which pioneered the netbook in 2007, plans to launch five consumer-priced ultra-thins this year."
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Ultra-Thin Laptops To Be Next Intel-AMD Battleground

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  • by bogaboga ( 793279 ) on Monday June 22, 2009 @08:21AM (#28420019)

    I hope they are promoting slimness with performance. I wonder why today's computing power with 1GHz machines and 1GB memories does not feel snappy at all.

    I remember using computers years ago with Windows 95 that were quite fast on systems with 200MHz CPUs and 64Mb RAM modules.

    I hope they will not forget performance...maybe the ARM systems will deliver on this.

  • by SharpFang ( 651121 ) on Monday June 22, 2009 @08:44AM (#28420229) Homepage Journal

    Win95 had real, genuine multitasking. It was win3.11 that had the "task switching" tech where the foreground window was running.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 22, 2009 @08:52AM (#28420329)

    900MHZ, 1GB, 16GB. I'm not even trying Vista. XP is far too slow to be usable (new www page takes >30s to open). Linux works acceptably but rather slow - 5s to open terminal, 20s to open Firefox, 5-10s page load (render) time... why?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 22, 2009 @09:25AM (#28420733)

    Linux works acceptably but rather slow [...] ... why?

    It depends how you set up your linux environment. If you're using KDE4 with a million plasmoids and Compiz on max, then yes, it will be unacceptably slow. On the other hand, if you're using XFCE or fluxbox or some other "liteweight" DM, and a quick underlying OS, then it'll be zippy like no-one's business, even on a computer with a quarter of those specs. Hell, I've gotten Linux with a GUI (Puppy, to be specific) running fairly quickly on a AMD K6-era computer (enough for Grandma 6-pack if she doesn't mind the ugliness). Unlike XP/Vista (Mac is it's own thing because of the software/hardware integration), it's not reasonable to talk about Linux as a whole in terms of speed, because Linux occupies both extremes (CompizFusion+KDE4 on one end, no graphical interface whatsoever on the other).

  • by Corporate Troll ( 537873 ) on Monday June 22, 2009 @09:26AM (#28420759) Homepage Journal

    900MHZ, 1GB, 16GB

    I think I know what your problem is: disk I/O. Why? Because between 2005 and 2007, my primary laptop was a second-hand purchased 600MHz P-III with 256Meg RAM and a 4GB harddisk. Got it for 100€ and I immediately added 256Meg to "speed it up". I installed Windows XP SP2 and it ran just fine (Okay, browsing back then was Firefox 1.5.x) One day, the 4Gig started to fill up (4Gig is fine for the OS + Applications, but once you start gathering a bit data....) and I thought "let's replace the disk". I bought the cheapest 2.5" harddisk I could find (which was a 80Gig disk, more than enough for my needs) and..... to my surprise the machine was suddenly feeling much faster. I wouldn't have ever guessed that the bottleneck at this state would be the disk I/O.

    Now, with those specs, you might be talking about a Netbook. I also happen to have an Asus EEE PC 701 4G and with it's 670MHz (can't keep it on 900MHz, even on Debian), 2Gig RAM it does feel slow. Why? I highly suspect that those 4Gig SSD in there aren't all that hot. It runs Debian 5.0 with LXDE, but starting Iceweasel or Icedove takes forever. Once they're running, it's completely fine: they're in RAM and I've got plenty of that.

    I don't expect XP to run better than Debian. The original Xandros was faster though. I don't really know what to do to optimize it.

  • Re:Ports (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 22, 2009 @09:33AM (#28420879)

    There's quite a bit of room before we hit that barrier. Macbook Air is 20mm thick in its thickest place. RJ45, the thickest of the ones you listed is 8mm in the thickest place, meaning a well-engineered socket can be 1cm thick (and a better-engineered one will collapse to half that size when not used). Ethernet is dying in the laptop world too. VGA is dying, HDMI is 4.45mm tall. I think USB at is to stay the longest, with its 5mm plugs.

      Anyway, the first centimeter can be shedded with little/no obstacles from the socket side.

  • Re:Ports (Score:2, Informative)

    by mrchaotica ( 681592 ) * on Monday June 22, 2009 @10:27AM (#28421803)

    Video out (VGA or otherwise) is unnecessary in this class of machine -- but even if you did want it, you could use Mini DisplayPort. Ethernet is unnecessary. USB is necessary, but is also thin enough to fit -- and if it isn't, you could use Mini- or Micro-USB.

  • Actually they tried that [youtube.com] once, and since they aren't selling it anymore I have to assume it bombed. A "fold up" keyboard is a bad idea because it gives you one more point of failure. I personally think the 7in and 10in sizes are fine, as long as they give you the option of a USB keyboard/mouse if you so desire.

    That said, I wonder how long it is gonna be before the "laptop everything" fad dies. I have been talking to my customers and their desires for a laptop more than half the time are "because its a laptop" and not that they are actually gonna be mobile with the stupid thing. Considering how proprietary the things are and the lack of expandability I have to figure sooner or later the bottom is gonna drop out when all those that want one "just because" have one. I swear the way some of my customers talk about the things I'm starting to get the feeling these ultra mobile devices are the new thighmasters and will end up chucked in the closet right along with their home gyms when the fad wears off. For those that are doing business or school and always on the go, sure I can see the use. But a good half the people I talk to almost never have the stupid thing even unplugged. What's the point in that?

"Let every man teach his son, teach his daughter, that labor is honorable." -- Robert G. Ingersoll