Intel: Ultrabooks will be thin and light but heavy in innovation

Sep 12, 2012 by Nancy Owano report

(Phys.org)—Intel's new breed of Ultrabooks will be lighter, thinner but loaded with new features and functions that end users will either see as bloat or muscle, and Intel is counting on the latter. The look and functions of Intel's next-generation Intel Ultrabooks were revealed by Intel executives at the Intel Developer Forum. The new computers will bring in voice recognition, touch, finger tracking, augmented reality, and gesture-based interfaces. The technologies that generally are expected out of smartphones and tablets will be applied toward the thin and light computers. Ultrabook manufacturers will start to integrate sensors gyroscopes, accelerometers, GPS, NFC, and 3G and 4G-LTE connectivity.

A tool by Nuance called Dragon Assistant will start appearing in Dell ultrabooks later this year. A demo at the IDF featured a Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook running Nuance's Dragon Assistant Beta.

With next month's release of Windows 8 from Microsoft, 40 upcoming Ultrabooks based on Windows 8 will be touch-enabled.

Talk of the upcoming Ultrabooks at the IDF was laced with the key technology driver behind future innovation-loaded Ultrabooks, and that is Haswell, Intel's upcoming . Intel fashioned Haswell with beefed-up Ultrabooks in mind. Haswell can allow for the Ultrabook's upcoming innovations, with a design that enables lower power requirements, power boosts, and more efficient energy management. Haswell's capabilities translate into Ultrabook capabilities. The Haswell design carries the same 22-nm process as , but will deliver better power management and battery life. Haswell processors will support Intel customers building a new crop of tablet-morphing form factors, where a flip or swivel or fold-back changes the laptop into a tablet. There are about 70 ultrabooks on the market at the moment. Next year, Intel is banking on doubling that number.

To prep developers, Intel announced this week that it will release an introductory software developer package, the Intel Perceptual Computing SDK 2013 Beta, in October. Developers will be able to add perceptual computing usage for immersive software applications that incorporate close-range tracking, speech recognition, facial analysis and 2-D/3-D object tracking on second and third generation core processor-powered Ultrabooks and PCs. This SDK supports the CREATIVE Interactive Gesture Camera Developer Kit, a USB-powered depth sensor camera tuned for short-range interactivity. This is for Intel-powered Ultrabooks, laptops or PCs used within a range of six inches to three feet. The camera developer kit, said Intel, will be available in Q4 of this year. Intel has also announced a Perceptual Computing Challenge with up to $1 million in awards and promotions for application developers.

Explore further: Technology to reduce network switches in cluster supercomputers by 40 percent

More information: software.intel.com/en-us/vcsou… eptual-computing-sdk

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droid001
3.3 / 5 (4) Sep 12, 2012
Ultrabooks will be thin and light but heavy in price
mikero
5 / 5 (3) Sep 12, 2012
What they will be loaded with is a crappy glossy 720p (i.e., 1366x768 display). Unfortunately, there will be plenty of suckers who will buy them with this garbage.

Few things on a laptop are as important (or costly for manufacturers) as its display. It is too bad that people either don't know or don't care about the kind of crap that manufacturers are unloading on them.

They claim "Perceptual Computing." All I perceive is large pixels, DPI ratios from the 1990s, and color gamuts in the 60%-70% of sRGB that only a mother can love being crammed down everybodys' proverbial throats.
PinkElephant
not rated yet Sep 12, 2012
@mikero,

Not necessarily, at least as far as screen resolutions go. Haswell greatly boosts (by a factor of 2x) the integrated graphics capability as compared to Ivy Bridge. There's even talk of native platform support for 4K displays (that is, 4K x 2K resolutions) driven by the on-die GPU. This will be critical to supporting higher screen resolutions without making performance (such as HD video playback or web page scrolling) unacceptably sluggish.

Also, ultrabooks compete with tablets, and will need to provide competitive displays. On the whole, I anticipate the dark ages of PC display technology to be drawing to a close over the next year or two.
Nattydread
5 / 5 (2) Sep 13, 2012
but will it run linux?
denijane
not rated yet Sep 13, 2012
All very nice, but having Windows 8 on them is just blaaah. I hope Intel would be kind enough to offer Linux drivers for those heavy weaponry in the ultrabook. Because I'd love to have one of those, if the cost allows it, but I wouldn't buy it if Windows is the only option for OS. But if Intel provides the drivers, I'd so happily put Linux on it. :)))