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Acer, Asustek Disappointed By Ultrabook Shipments?

Ultrabooks may not be up for the stellar start many were expecting, with two of the big manufacturers backing the format, Acer and Asus, expecting to ship (not sell) just 100,000 units of the posher version of the netbook each, compared to estimates of 200 to 300 thousand units.

Monica and Steve Shen from Digitimes (opens in new tab) say that the price appears to be the main factor behind the slow start for the Ultrabook, according to unnamed sources in the Taiwanese component channel.

The price of the Asustek Zenbook in Taiwan is still well above the $1000 that it sells for in the US, indicating a possible issue with component sourcing. The price of the Acer Aspire S3 is also significantly higher than the comparable MacBook Air, despite the fact that Acer uses a hybrid storage solution compared to Apple's 128 GB SSD.

The Digitimes' source claims that there's an "unclear market demand for new notebooks" but didn't pinpoint the exact cause of the collapse in demand.

It is estimated that ultrabooks may account for just 10 percent of the entire notebook market by April 2012 with that proportion potentially tripling by the end of 2012, far from Intel's public goal of reaching 40 per cent of the laptop consumer market by then.

Désiré Athow

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.