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The Ultrabook

The Ultrabook

The newest type of notebook PC is called an ultrabook. An ultrabook is simply a smaller, thinner, and lighter notebook – or, looking at it another way, a beefed-up netbook.

Most current ultrabooks are modeled after Apple’s MacBook Air, but at slightly lower prices. (Apple always commands a premium.) Most ultrabooks have screens in the 12” to 14” range, don’t have CD/DVD drives, and instead of using hard disk storage, use solid state flash storage, typically in the 128GB-256GB range. (RAM is typically around 4GB.)

Figure 4 Dell’s 13.3” ultrabook, with 128GB solid state memory.

All this makes an ultrabook very fast and very easy to carry around, without necessarily sacrificing computing power and functionality. However, all this new technology makes ultrabooks cost a bit more than more traditional notebooks. (Okay, a lot more than traditional notebooks.) Expect to pay no less than $750 and up to $1,500. That may seem like a lot of money for a notebook with a small screen and no hard disk, but some of that goes for style points; ultrabooks are exceedingly cool and Mac-like, and fit very well into any briefcase or backpack.

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