We’ve seen so much Ultrabook news recently we’re beginning to think they’re catching on. Market research firm the NPD Group has stepped in to confirm our suspicions, reporting a 39 percent jump in sales of premium Windows laptops (900 bucks and up) during the first five months of this year, compared with the same period in 2011. Despite a three percent drop in sales of $ 700-plus Windows notebooks, the Ultrabook share of this bracket increased steadily to nearly 11 percent. The analysts predict sales of these lower-end models will pick up as back-to-school purchases sooth the post-summer blues, with a general boost to the whole Ultrabook market expected when Windows 8 arrives. One thing the figures don’t tell us is what impact these sales are having on the revenue of Apple’s skinny flagship, but we’d sure like to know. If numbers are your thing, the PR is past the break.
Let the Tegra 2-powered, Android Honeycomb tablet announcements begin! Apparently (and understandably) staying away from a Folio 2 moniker, Toshiba is kicking off CES with its new unnamed 10.1-inch Android tablet, and we have to say from our brief look at a non-working unit a few weeks ago, it may just have what it takes to stick out from the rest.. at least on the spec and manufacturing quality front. The tablet has a capacitive, high 1280 x 800-resolution display along with an accelerometer and ambient light sensor (or what Toshiba has dubbed as Adaptive Display technology). It also has a 5 megapixel rear camera as well as a 2 megapixel front-facing one. Yep, this one is well stocked and just a quick look at the pictures below will show that the slab has got full sized USB and HDMI jacks, a single mini-USB socket, and an SD card slot.
While we couldn’t turn on the dual-core Tegra 2-powered tablet, which will eventually run “the next version of Android designed for tablets” aka Honeycomb, we have to say the EasyGrip, spill-resistant, rubberized back felt really solid in hand and the 1.7-pound, .6-inch thick tablet felt comparable to the iPad in terms of portability. Oh, and did we mention that the aforementioned rear cover is swappable, so not only can you change its color but you can replace the battery? We told you it had some of the ingredients to make it go far, but we’re obviously lacking quite a bit of information here to make any further decisions. Toshiba’s maintaining that the tablet will be released in the first half of 2011 and the pricing will be competitive, but we’ll be digging for more when we get to Vegas and hopefully reporting back with some impressions of a working unit.
Gallery: Toshiba 7-inch tablet hands-on
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