Chipmaker AMD may be readying an ultra-sleek notebook platform to challenge Apple’s MacBook Air and rival Intels’ Ultrabook. The company hinted at its plan in a recent interview with The Australian.
AMD wouldn’t use Intel’s Ultrabook moniker, however, and the company would create its own brand, perhaps Ultrathin.
In order for AMD to be successful in the space, it would not only have to undercut Apple’s MacBook Air pricing, but also pricing from Windows hardware makers running Intel chipsets. Additionally, AMD would have to convince its hardware partners to create compelling design. Many–though not all–of Intel’s partners’ early Ultrabook entries have made sacrifices to achieve a slim design, including keyboards that flex, and overall build quality and aesthetics that do not match nor exceed’s Apple’s class-leading designs. AMD would need to convince and help its partners overcome these shortcomings to offer a viable and competitive offering to compete against Apple.
Could AMD’s chipset introduced for the Ultrathin platform convince Apple to switch suppliers? It is speculated that before Apple had made the switch to Intel processor on its computing products, the company had considered AMD’s offering. However, as AMD was unable to scale up production of its chipset, Apple ultimately went with Intel’s processors.