Intel is matchmaking vendors and manufacturers in an attempt to ensure the success of its ultrabook segment, pushing brand names into the embrace of ODMs promising ultraportables as cheap as $599. Epson, Onkyo, ViewSonic, Mustek, Motion Computing, WiPro and Positivo have all placed orders with Pegatron and ECS, DigiTimes reports, after Intel put them altogether for notebook speed-dating .
Although none of the machines are expected to be either as eye-catching or as well marketed as the top-tier ultrabooks from Dell, HP, Lenovo and others, what they will have in their favor is affordability. Intel is pushing for $599 to $649 machines, accounting for around 6- to 7-percent of the notebook market overall in 2012.
The new models are coming in Q2 2012, the sources say, as part of a 15m 2012 push for second-tier vendors as the ultrabook market takes off.
Meanwhile, Quanta Computer - believed to be manufacturing HP's ultrabook for the company - has apparently bought its own CNC machines so that it can create unibody casings in-house. The investment is being seen as an attempt to cut manufacturing costs, reducing the need to outsource chassis production. Rival Wistron, though, is apparently looking to non-metal options, which would open the door to alternative color ultrabooks.