They represent Intel's attempt to take ultraportables similar to the latest versions of Apple's MacBook Air and make them mass market.
Is Intel jealously smacking its runaway bride (Apple)?
Could Apple be cozying up to AMD?
In his biography by Walter Isaacson, Steve Jobs compared Intel to a steamship noting that its graphics suck. Page 493:
We tried to help Intel, but they don't listen much. We've been telling them for years that their graphics suck... They wanted this big joint project to do chips for future iPhones. There were two reasons we didn't go with them. One was that they are just really slow. They're like a steamship...Second is that we just didn't want to teach them everything, which they could go and sell to our competitors.
What if Steve wanted to move beyond "steamship" innovation and sucky graphics?
Steve had the foresight to see that if Apple acquired AMD it would get a treasure chest of patents which would help it defend against future lawsuits (like the recent case with S3).
Most importantly, Apple would get AMD's engineering team, which has historically innovated quite well despite a limited R&D budget resulting from very limited market access due to Intel’s unusual practices. (Dell alone reportedly received $6 billion from Intel between 2002 and 2007 to not buy AMD chips. Sometimes those payments exceeded Dell’s profits.)
Apple has never attempted to develop its own central processing units and used off-the-shelf chips for many reasons, the main of which is state-of-the-art technologies required for competitive microprocessors along with experience, patent portfolio and so on.