Intel talks future Ultrabooks and Windows 8

Earlier this month, PC makers started announcing their first Ultrabooks, the thin and light notebooks that was first conceived of and designed by chip maker Intel. But upcoming designs for the Ultrabook might look a lot more like Apple's iPad than the MacBook Air. News.com reports that during a presentation at the Citi Technology Conference this week, Intel's CFO Stacy Smith showed a more tablet-like design for a future Ultrabook. The change in design was to bring something new to the notebook space, with Smith saying, "Form factors in the notebook market have been somewhat stagnant over the last several years."

While the next version of the notebook will still have a physical keyboard, Intel has created a concept design that has the Ultrabook's screen turning and flipping over so it covers the keyboard and can then double as a touch screen tablet. Smith said the design won't be released by PC makers this year but could come out in the next 18 months.

Smith also talked about Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8 operating system. Earlier this year Microsoft announced that processors based on designs from Intel rival ARM will be able to run Windows 8. This week Smith said, "There's going to be the Win 8 that's for PCs and Ultrabooks. That's where legacy applications are enabled. You're not going to see ARM in that segment of the marketplace." As for smartphones and tablets, Smith said that Intel will be able to compete with ARM for those kinds of products. He said, "The key for us is to just deliver more performance in that form factor, more features in that form factor. We think that enables us to do well and enables us to win our fair share of the [market]."

As we reported earlier this week, next week's Intel Developer Forum will feature at least two panels where both Intel and Microsoft reps will talk about Windows 8.

Image via Intel

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Modder creates PC case with both PS3 and Xbox 360 inside

Next Story

Modernwarfare3.com URL awarded to Activision

17 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

cleverclogs said,
Wow, they've finally caught on to the tablet idea that was here in 2001!

the same idea that microsoft pushed in 2001...

", Intel has created a concept design that has the Ultrabook's screen turning and flipping over so it covers the keyboard and can then double as a touch screen tablet"
It's called the HP TM2T and it was indeed a great device until HP discontinued it. Shame really, I'd prefer one of these over a tablet any day.

InfiniteLuke said,
I think that's exactly what I need. Notebook and tablet in one device with a real OS, preferable Windows 8

I'm with you, these ultrabooks are tempting, specially with Win8 so you can take full advantage of it in tablet mode.

InfiniteLuke said,
I think that's exactly what I need. Notebook and tablet in one device with a real OS, preferable Windows 8

well, convertible tabletpc's have been around for almost 10 years now. but of course they got multi-touch just recently. my concern is, whether OEMs start to get rid of wacom in these tablets or still make combo multi-touch + wacom as it is now.

You're not going to see ARM in that segment of the marketplace.

Does this mean that ARM based tablets will not be able to run legacy applications? Am I reading it right?

Mohitster said,
Does this mean that ARM based tablets will not be able to run legacy applications? Am I reading it right?

ARM is not x86 compatible, software has to be either compiled specifically for it, or if it's managed the dotNET JITer will compile it for code native to the host system. You can't just take some random old program, copy it over and run it. Won't work.

Jen Smith said,

ARM is not x86 compatible, software has to be either compiled specifically for it, or if it's managed the dotNET JITer will compile it for code native to the host system. You can't just take some random old program, copy it over and run it. Won't work.

Surely Windows 8 will have some emulation for x86 software.

SpyderCanopus said,

Surely Windows 8 will have some emulation for x86 software.


Emulating x86 on ARM? Have fun waiting…

SpyderCanopus said,

Surely Windows 8 will have some emulation for x86 software.

GP007 said,

*cough*HyperV*cough*

Microsoft have said that ARM doesn't have the power to do emulation for x86.

Jen Smith said,
ARM is not x86 compatible, software has to be either compiled specifically for it, or if it's managed the dotNET JITer will compile it for code native to the host system. You can't just take some random old program, copy it over and run it. Won't work.

Anyone know whether or not it'll have access to DirectX? I assume it will, so I mean, porting games shouldn't really be too difficult.

Uhyve said,

Anyone know whether or not it'll have access to DirectX? I assume it will, so I mean, porting games shouldn't really be too difficult.

Windows 8 on ARM will have all the same APIs as Windows 8 on x86, it'll just be running on a different instruction set. Managed apps should just work, but native apps will need to be ported, and unless a native application has some x86 assembler code in it, porting should be fairly straightforward.

We think that enables us to do well and enables us to win our fair share of the [market]."

Yup, it's their birth right.

And look at the keyboard in this picture. It looks like a touch surface based keyboard. Really flat.