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Otellni bangs Ultrabook drum at IDF

Intel chief Paul Otellini used his keynote address at this week's Intel Developer forum to push the chip maker's Ultrabook form factor. Intel is hoping the skinny box will inject some life in the notebook market when punters are increasingly turning to the tablet.

"The Ultrabook is our vision that delivers the complete computing experience - more responsive, engaging," Otellini burbled from the San Franciscan stage. "Implications of the Ultrabook are huge," he said.

Ultrabooks would be "affordable," Otellini said, using a metric which may have been more applicable to his assembled audience that the wider world outside. By current reckoning and casting an eye over the few that have been launched so far you won't be getting much change out of £600, should you take the plunge. Asked to pay more than that, you may as well plumb for Apple's MacBook Air, on which the skinny concept is based - you'll get a meatier chip in your slimline box, and most of us can't yet rely on being far from a wall socket when required to work.

Otellini said Intel's upcoming Ivy Bridge would further boost the Ultrabook concept. That comes early net year, followed by Haswell - a system-on-a-chip design, which although some way off may put Ultrabooks in an even more 'affordable' space and may usher in the age when we can be liberated from the wall socket - at least while the batteries are new...

Otellini claims Haswell will reduce the Ultrabook's "platform power" by a factor of 20, reckoning that should give a solid day's meaningful work between charges. We'll wait and see.