It's official, 2012 is the year of Macbook clones

Theres no bitterness here at all, weve always wanted to own a PC that looks a little like a Macbook Air, if were honest with ourselves. This is the year that that wish will come true, with a host of Ultrabooks that look almost like the real deal assaulting our eye sockets at CES.

Heres a few examples of devices we found lying around in the Microsoft and Intel booths over our first day of travel;

Now, dont get us wrong, its great to see manufacturers actually caring about the industrial designs of the machines theyre making available this year, but itd be good to see a little more innovation instead of slapping on aluminum, making it slim and adding in illuminated keys.

However, we did find a concept machine that illustrates a great new way manufacturers are looking at the Ultrabook, and that differentiates them from the others (pictured below).

This device has a screen that swivels, as you can see in the gaps in the screen bezel, so that it can be used as either a laptop or tablet. Its not too obvious, and the concept still needs a little work, but at least its different.

Sure, Ultrabooks might be the next big thing (or maybe not), and its great to see light, thin and powerful devices becoming available, but manufacturers need to take a step back and look at what really differentiates them from everyone else. Otherwise, they risk becoming part of the sea of Ultrabooks, indistinguishable from one another, with the Macbook Air reigning above them all. 

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