Intel's ultrabook-tablet hybrid could be next big thing

Cove Point device combines form factors

Intel last week demonstrated the reference design of an ultrabook-tablet hybrid that could well be the next big thing, once the touch-optimized Windows 8 is released at the end of the year.

Intel's (NASDAQ: INTC) device, dubbed Cove Point, comes with a touch screen that works as a tablet when closed; with the display slid backward, a full-size keyboard allows the Cove Point device to function as an ultrabook.

Unlike the Asus Transformer, which is effectively an Android tablet that can be attached to a keyboard base unit, Cove Point is a full-fledged PC. Indeed, the device that was demonstrated was running on a prototype Ivy Bridge microprocessor and sported a 12.5-inch screen, two USB 3.0 ports and a HDMI port.

Speaking to Wired, Gary Richman, director of marketing for Intel's PC client solutions division, noted, "Ultrabooks were never meant to be just clamshell designs." Referring to the importance of the touch experience, Richman said of Cove Point, "We were looking to define the compelling form factors, usages and benefits of having a notebook design, while taking advantage of the touch experience in Windows 8."

Richman estimated the device would cost $1,000, which has led to some disappointment. While this may appear a tad expensive as a consumer-only device, I foresee that many businesses would prefer to purchase an ultrabook-tablet hybrid for employees than to purchase them separately at a higher cost.

For more:
- check out this article at Wired

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