CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

Summary: The Windows-based ultra-portable competitors to the MacBook Air keep on coming, and the newest challenger from Samsung definitely has the chic look down.Under 3 pounds and just 0.

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The Windows-based ultra-portable competitors to the MacBook Air keep on coming, and the newest challenger from Samsung definitely has the chic look down.

Under 3 pounds and just 0.64 inches thick, the 9 Series laptop has the requisite svelte specs, but it adds some sexiness with the curved lines and brushed-metal case design. Samsung fashioned the notebook from duralumin, which it claims is twice as strong as aluminum. It's also given the system a 13.3-inch LED-backlit display with a high 400-nit brightness and ambient light sensors that automatically adjust lighting levels to suit the environment in which you're viewing the screen.

The base 9 Series innards are highlighted by an Intel Core i5-2537M processor, one of the new Sandy Bridge ultra-low-voltage chips. That configuration also comes with 4GB of RAM, 128 solid-state drive, and a 64-bit version of Windows 7. Versions with Core i7 CPUs, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD will also be available. Samsung claims 6.5 hours of battery life for the laptop.

Samsung can't compete with the MacBook Air on price, however, as the Series 9 will start at $1,599 when it hits the market next month.

Topics: Samsung, Apple, Hardware, Laptops, Mobility

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25 comments
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  • Yes please, I'll take one.

    Thank you!
    Dietrich T. Schmitz, ~ Your Linux Advocate
  • just put Linux on it

    and it will become more popular than MacBook Air.
    Linux Geek
    • Humor goes a log way.

      @Linux Geek

      Though I'm surprised at the lack or response to your flame bait.

      Let me know how it goes when you get your favorite distro working on it. Post a how-to somewhere. I'm all ears/eyes.

      I love Linux for research, and have had it on all my laptops at some point since 1996, but getting it to work on bleeding-edge laptops has always been a royal pain the the neck. Had to use linux on a VM under Win7 on my duel-GPU ASUS for 3 months before the development drivers worked at all navitely. Pre-installed and configured Ubuntu much like Windows will be or something of the sort would go a long way to making more people use Linux.

      My honest, of course and unfortunately, advice to all regular of users who jump on the new Samsung is to use Win7, but do yourself a favor and just do a clean install.

      My advice to all Linux enthusiasts is to post somewhere visible your experience and instructions on getting everything to work.

      @eleaders (below): Probably at some point you'll be able to download a version of OSX that will run on this, at least until Apple sues the developers and tries to go after all the distribution channels as they have been doing for the past many years saying it's to "protect" the user experience and the Apple brand.
      Mr. Copro Encephalic to You
      • RE: CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

        @Mr. Copro Encephalic to You
        Go to any Apple store, get yourself a copy of Snow Leopard and try installing on any non-Apple branded machine.
        Apple Inc. will not care what you the individual does. As long as you don't open up a storefront and start selling these hackintoshes to the public, you'll be OK.
        MG537-23482538203179240121698430309828
  • I want it now!!!

    Don't care if it cost more than a Macbook air. Send me one now so I can quit drooling on my keyboard.
    jimaaa7
  • RE: CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

    DOA maybe? Too expensive.
    mvaiks
  • RE: CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

    You should look at the Sony X series. It has been out for a year. It is a little smaller and lighter than the Air.
    kenzdnet
    • Smaller, lighter and .... slower and more expensive

      @kenzdnet Why pay more for less when the original will cost you 50% less?
      wackoae
      • Re: Smaller, lighter and .... slower and more expensive

        @wackoae, because there are many possible reasons why one may want or need to use Windows, yet still want a sleek laptop. For example, I live in Brazil, and here Mac users are pariahs, with no support, no easy access to maintenance (and then often waits of months until the computer gets sent to the U.S. and back, or some hard-to-get spare part is imported and arrives), no expertise, no connectivity, no availability of peripherals, accessories or software (other than downloads and the new Mac app store, which I'm not sure it works here - the iTunes store doesn't). No, thanks, too much hassle and trouble just to have an Apple-branded computer, regardless of its merits.

        Besides, a MacBook Air doesn't cost less than $2,000 USD here, and most models more like $3,500. You can have equally effective PC/Windows alternatives for much less - including sleek laptops. And there are also people who need to use corporate software and so on.
        goyta
  • Nice

    I'll take one please!
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
  • RE: CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

    Can we put Snow Leopard on it?
    eleaders
  • Well, first the price is way too high, then Windows7 is low class compared

    to OSX, so, you pay more money makes you look dorky because of the OS.
    DonnieBoy
    • RE: CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

      @DonnieBoy

      Obviously you haven't used OS/X Donnie, or maybe you like retro. OS/X looks like it was "designed" by 14 year old boys with ADD. As for that stupid ever changing menu at the top, it's like going back to Lotus 1-2-3.

      Now explain to me how a Linux fanboi could afford a MAc?
      tonymcs1
      • RE: CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

        @tonymcs@...<br><br>Please evince your COMPLETE ignorance of UI topics, especially Fitts' Law, and explain how the Apple menu system is stupid. Please also explain how Windows' version of every window has its own menu is smart, even though it wastes more screen space and slows you down measurably and significantly.
        DeusXMachina
  • Macs are expensive....

    Oh wait...they're not.
    mrs1622
  • SSD should be a plus, but it's actually a drawback

    OK, so SSDs are fast, light and consume less power, but at the current state of technology, they are also very troublesome, especially regarding their limited write cycles. Just having a Windows paging file on an SSD is a definite no-no. I wouldn't have a computer that had only an SSD and no conventional platter hard disk at this stage. If it came with a 60-GB SSD and, say, a 320-GB or 500-GB conventional hard disk, I'd be dried out from drooling by now. As it is, I have to pass it.
    goyta
    • RE: CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

      @goyta Given that the laptop has between 4 and 8 GB of memory, you shouldn't need a paging file at all. My 2GB desktop rarely needs to swap memory out to disk.
      jgm2
    • CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-port

      @goyta<br>Hate to break the news to you, but SSD write cycle issues were solved years ago.
      DeusXMachina
  • better value with up to date technology

    The point you're all missing is that this has the latest generation core i5 processors - MUCH more powerful than the ancient 2-generation-old Core 2 Duo CPUs offered in the Macbook Air.
    cauleyflower
  • RE: CES 2011: Samsung takes on MacBook Air with super-sleek 9 Series ultra-portable laptop

    Instant FAIL, they better not have given the green light to that dud.
    james347