Announcing The Ultrathin Laptop Buying Advisor driven by Chippy and Larovo

Posted on 24 February 2012 By


ultrathin advisorOver the last 6 years of product blogging I’ve always believed that  professional product blogs should be niche, run by experts and focused on guiding people to solutions rather than just being an open information and advertising platform. It’s the reason I started building a product database just months after launching my first product blog in 2006. That product database has become a great reference, a focal point for external review and information links, a conversation channel and for me, one of my most important revenue channels. Without it, I wouldn’t be blogging professionally.

I’ve always wanted to add two things to that database though. I wanted to add current pricing and a web-based advisor. While I try to map readers to products as much as I can through my articles, providing a separate channel to map readers to solutions has proved beyond my means. Until now.

You can imagine how pleased I am today to be launching a web-based advisor that links your requirements to current products and pricing via my own expert knowledge.

Announcing the Ultrathin Laptop Buying Advisor powered by Ultrabooknews, Larovo and Chippy

Click through and have a go. See if there’s a product out there that matches your requirements.

The tool should be self-explanatory and should neatly guide the average user through a simple or extended question-set to a list of products and prices. We’re currently using Amazon and their marketplace to bring you offers from the U.S.A, Germany and United Kingdom. We’ve mapped all the available Ultrabooks and in the near future we’ll be adding all the ultrathin laptops we have in our database. The service is currently targeted at the desktop browser user but some testers have reported good results with various mobile browsers. We’re working to improve that.

This advisor has been made possible by some very smart people at a company called Larovo in Germany who took the idea of online buying guides and added expert knowledge.  This is not an automated tool driven by product specifications and page hit counts, it’s a complex mapping and ranking of questions to products. Through our partnership we’ve put tools and knowledge together in a way that benefits everyone.

Naturally we’re very keen to have your thoughts on this so we can improve it so feel free to leave your feedback below. As mentioned, I’ll be adding all ultrathin devices to the system in the near future and I’ll let you know when that’s live. In the meantime, enjoy! If you make a purchase through the system, be sure to let us know how it turns out and of course, thanks!

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  1. #1 by BLMuzzy on February 24, 2012 - 20:02

    very nice idea. I note that I checked only the 11.6″ screen option but was given 3 suggestions, 2 of which were 13.3″. Also, it didn’t suggest the MBA 11.6″, only the ASUS. It happens that I prefer a Windows system, but that wasn’t an option. I suppose a Mac customer knows there’s only the 2 MBA options.

    Also, I re-ran it looking for both 11.6″ and 13.3″ didn’t see the not quite there yet Dell option. Is this on purpose, limited to just shipping systems.

    Thanks!

    • #2 by Chippy on February 24, 2012 - 22:41

      Thanks BLMuzzy. We do list alternatives if there arent exactl matches. Ultrabook ‘alternatives’ are going into the database in the second stage and yes, the Dell is probably not shipping yet. We will be checking and updating the database on a a regular basis.
      Regards
      Steve

      • #3 by BLMuzzy on February 25, 2012 - 22:05

        Hi Steve,
        Well, in my case, there *was* an exact match. the asus ux21 is 11.6″. (again, assuming we discount the MBA) I thought it was odd that two 13.3″ models came up at all, but since they did, why no other 13.3″?

        thanks!

      • #4 by Siddharth on March 4, 2012 - 01:36

        Hi there, You have done an incredible job. I’ll lntraiecy digg it and personally suggest to my friends. I am confident they’ll be benefited from this web site.

  2. #5 by Robert on February 24, 2012 - 20:02

    great advisor:-)it came out Z830 for me with Lenovo second and the Acer third :-) Z830 was my intitial hope too but now i am fixated on the upcomming Samsung Series 9 which Britians will have in the shop on the weekend I believe :-)

    • #6 by Chippy on February 24, 2012 - 22:43

      We had someone in testing that was recommended exactly the device they had already bought. I can’t guarantee it’s perfect but i’m really happy with the logic and my ability to put my ‘knowledge’ into the advisor.

  3. #7 by Stefan on February 24, 2012 - 20:51

    I like this buying guide very much.
    Thanks for this tool. This simplifies my choice a lot :-)

  4. #8 by Pete on February 24, 2012 - 21:19

    When I click on the link, I get an empty page. What do I do wrong? (I have IE, 9.0.8v, 64-bit edition). Thanks.

    • #9 by Chippy on February 24, 2012 - 23:33

      Pete. It seems that a late comment in some of our code killed the chooser running in ie9. I have fixed that now. I also see that the default privacy settings on IE9 prevent the essential cookies being stored that keep the language settings between pages. If you have a chance, i’d like to know if 1) The tool shows for you and 2) if you have any problem with language (It might change to German)
      Thanks
      Steve / Chippy

      • #10 by Pete on February 25, 2012 - 04:32

        Hello Chippy:
        my both security and privacy settings in IE are medium high; my default language is English (USA). I run the advisor twice:
        1] the first time, I got the first page in English, but in British pounds. I guess that either USD or EUR would be better. I have no clue what the exchange rate to British pound is. As of page 2, it switched to something like “advisor for buying TV” and it was in German. Bizard. I killed the process.
        2] the second time, I run the whole “ultrathin advisor” in English, though the first page was still in british pounds. … I just assumed the exchange rate to pounds to be equat to that of Greek drachma, right? :-)
        Hope this help. Cheers, Pete
        p.s.> the advisor came with the same opinion I had myself (before you reported about the awful noise from Z830 fan). … this was written happily on my U300s.

      • #11 by Pete on February 25, 2012 - 04:38

        One more comment: I assume that the recommendation options are limited to those models that are already available, excluding those that are only in pipeline. (e.g. based on the criteria I put there, I would assume the response shall be T430u; but I will need to wait for about 6 months for it, right?). Great tool. Thanks.

  5. #12 by Dan on February 25, 2012 - 04:44

    Chippy, this is really great!! I ran through the advisor and it was spot on offering me the UX31, U300s and Z835, just what I was expecting!

    Thanks for your great work, and this awesome tool. I’m sure this will be a huge help to those unsure of their next purchase.

    • #13 by Chippy on February 25, 2012 - 16:46

      Thx Dan. Can I use that as a quote?

  6. #14 by Uella on February 25, 2012 - 05:35

    This tool could actually become useful when UB’s start flooding the market & it becomes difficult for someone to keep them all straight.

    But the question is, will you guys be able to keep the tool up to date?

    I need something like this for Android phones, I flat out gave up last year trying to keep track of all them.

    • #15 by Chippy on February 25, 2012 - 16:46

      I agree. One of the challenges will be to keep this up to date. We’re working on some back-end tools to monitor for changes and there will be a regular update schedule driven by me. We need to make sure we keep the user alerted to how recent the tool ‘engine’ is too.

      An Android phone chooser would be a much bigger task, I agree but we’re looking at ways we can work with bigger product segments. We’re taking a close look at tablets together to see if there’s a way we can get this enabled on Carrypad.com

      • #16 by Dan on February 25, 2012 - 16:53

        off topic… Android Central has a nice database of Android phones… it’s not as well done as Chippy’s, and won’t help you specifically, but it’s good comparison tool:
        http://www.shopandroid.com/?utm_source=ac

  7. #17 by bearforce1 on February 25, 2012 - 10:36

    Super. I wish you could have the same for netbooks and slates.

    If this is kept up to date it will allow people to make fully informed choices. This means that as a consumer I won’t miss out on models that I wasn’t aware of. Way cool.

  8. #18 by vjachi on February 25, 2012 - 11:40

    Great advisor, come out with the toshiba for me :)
    BTW it’s not working on Safari. When I click Next question it’s just reloading the site. Changed on mozilla and worked fine :)

    • #19 by Chippy on February 25, 2012 - 16:47

      OK. We’ll take a look into that. What country are you in. (Helps us debug)

      • #20 by vjachi on February 25, 2012 - 23:57

        Bulgaria. And the Safari was used on Windows, not MAC :)

  9. #21 by Tsuki on February 26, 2012 - 02:09

    The only browser that it worked in on my computer was Lunascape 6 under Trident/IE rendering.

    • #22 by Chippy on February 26, 2012 - 09:49

      What browsers did you try?

      • #23 by Tsuki on February 26, 2012 - 17:11

        Chrome (my main browser), FireFox 10, IE9, Lunascape 6

  10. #24 by Dan on February 26, 2012 - 15:21

    vjachi :
    Bulgaria. And the Safari was used on Windows, not MAC

    Why would anyone use Safari on a Windows machine? Even on Mac Chrome and FF are superior.. even Opera is better.

    • #25 by vjachi on February 26, 2012 - 20:53

      Because I use it long ago and I like it. It’s fast enough for me :)

  11. #26 by Bob on February 29, 2012 - 14:21

    you should check out skimlinks.com

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