Lenovo ThinkPad S531 or the changing face of the Ultrabook

Earlier this week, Lenovo unveiled the ThinkPad S531, an Ultrabook that comes with a 15.6in and joined the growing ranks of devices that are blurring the lines between traditional laptops and Intel’s inspired Ultrabooks.

The first generation of Ultrabook, which was based on Sandy Bridge (Huron River), proved to be the one nearer to the Ultrabook devices. Very thin, very light and very expensive thanks to the use of SSD and the less common 13.3in displays.

Things have changed with the second generation Ultrabooks with Asus, Samsung, HP, Acer and now Lenovo debuting Ultrabook models with 15.6in displays while hybrid storage solution (a cache SSD with a traditional hard drive) becoming more mainstream.

And things are becoming more flexible with Shark Bay (aka 4th generation Intel Core) and a minimum baseline requirement of 23mm thickness.

Expect manufacturers to fully embrace economies of scale by reducing the average size of notebooks altogether and using the same baseline components for their traditional laptops (aka thin-and-slim) and for Intel Ultrabooks. In other words, your bog standard laptop will probably look a lot like an Ultrabook but without the moniker and many of its features.