Apple MacBook Air Update matches Samsung Series 9

Posted on 20 July 2011 By


Both the Samsung 900X1B and the Apple MacBook Air that was announced today should be available from tomorrow. Both weigh the same. Both use a similar ‘Sandy Bridge’ platform, both offer an 11.6″ screen, both look sleek and both cost about $1000.

One runs Windows 7, the other runs the newly-available Apple OS X Lion operating system.

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Both are, in my eyes, Ultrabooks. Intel may not agree when they finally publish their Ultrabook sepcifications but for the time being, this is about as close as it gets to 1KG, high-capability mobile computing.

For a few dollars and a few ounces more you could go to the 13″ versions of these with even more power and capability but the real fight here is between Windows and IOS, with a touch of fan-leverage too. Early reviews of Lion (there’s a huge one here at ARS Technica) make exciting reading.

But what happens in September when the real ‘ultrabooks’ arrive. The MBA and Series 9 are rather expensive for an 11″ notebook, especially when you consider the Sandy Bridge based Lenovo Thinkpad X121e is coming in at about 30% less in Europe right now. Ultrabooks should come in below the prices of these premium ultra-thin laptops and soon after that, the choice should widen considerably and introduce competition. The $750 Ultrabook is surely not too far away.

Still, if it’s Lion you want, there will only be one choice for the next year so don’t expect any price drops on the MBA!

As reviews of the two products come in, they’ll be added to the Ultrabooknews product newsfeed. 

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  1. #1 by Leinie on July 20, 2011 - 21:48

    Ars overhyping an Apple product launch, you don’t say…

    I like many others find Apples desire to make the digital world replicate the physical world (calendar, address book, etc) absolutely horrific. reminds me of need ebook readers feel to replicate page turning as if it a real book.

    the childish, gaudy, tacky iOS UI making it’s way over to the desktop only further proves how the Windows Phone & 8 UI is lightyears beyond anything Apple is yet capable of.

    • #2 by Anonymous on July 25, 2011 - 00:06

      As my friend once called – OSX Fisher price for adults

  2. #3 by Anonymous on July 20, 2011 - 22:42

    Add a few grams, save $$$. The Samsung series 3 with 12 inch screen, 2.3 GHz i5 Sandy Bridge, 4gb RAM will cost $750 USD in a week or two. Maybe not an ultrabook because no SSD and 1400 g.
    Samsung NP350U2B-A01US

    • #4 by chippy on July 21, 2011 - 07:10

      40% more weight! It depends how you look at it I guess!

  3. #5 by Anonymous on July 24, 2011 - 23:50

    They are both Ultrabooks. Intel has both in their presentations too.

    Macbook Air is a far better one though. If you seen the comparison benchmarks, the chip in Samsung Series 9 perform like it has Turbo mode off for both CPU and graphics. Macbook Air will outperform the Samsung by 25-30% in CPU and 50-60% in graphics.

    They both cost the same, both feature an SSD, yet the Air packs in Thunderbolt connection, ability to run Mac OS and Windows, and the instant on(actually its 3-4 seconds but still very quick for hibernate).

    • #6 by chippy on July 30, 2011 - 09:47

      Measuring turbo is tough. I some of the test I did on the Series 9 the thermal limiting but in after just 9 seconds! In other tests, it lasted longer.

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