Samsung, Toshiba Planning ARM-based Google Chromebook Rivals?

Some of the biggest names in computing have apparently decided that the time has come to launch notebooks based on ARM's architecture, possibly as a direct response to the launch in Taipei of the new Ultrabook range.

Digitimes has been told by industry sources that vendors such as Samsung Electronics, Toshiba, Acer and Asustek Computer will develop such products, nearly three years after we first hoped to see them on the marketplace.

These tablets are expected to be launched as early as the end of 2011. Toshiba and Lenovo have already delved into the Smartbook arena, basically offering ARM-based ultra portable laptops with Android software, but phased them out because of weak demand.

But things have changed signifcantly since then. Google has launched its Chromebook and the first preorder figures in the UK look promising, meaning that users are no longer afraid of using alternative platforms.

Also ARM partners - TI, Nvidia and Qualcomm - have or are planning to release dual cores and quad cores system on chips.

Then there's the arrival next year of Windows 8 which will run on ARM as well as improved versions of Chrome OS and Android Honeycomb.

The sources also claim that Asustek will have a 13-inch ARM-based notebook running on an Nvidia Tegra processor as well as Android and may be sold for around $300.