HP launches Ivy Bridge Ultrabooks (AMD Trinity Envy Sleekbooks?) in India

A week after Lenovo launched India’s first Ultrabooks based on Intel’s latest generation Ivy Bridge processors, HP has followed suit by launching one of India’s cheapest thin and light notebooks.

HP has launched Ultrabooks and Sleekbooks based on Intel, and possibly AMD, chips. The Sleekbooks are priced at a starting price of just around Rs 41,500, while Ultrabooks start at Rs 57,500 onwards.

Globally, HP has launched Ultrabooks, based on Intel chips, while it has used the name Sleekbooks for Ultrabooks based on AMD’s Trinity Fusion APU chips. Intel, which owns the ‘Ultrabook’ trademark, does not allow products based on competitors’ chips such as Trinity, to be called Ultrabooks.

If the Sleekbooks launched in India also include those based on Trinity chips, they will be the first ever AMD-based Ultrabooks (called thin and light) laptops to be launched in India. It is, however, not clear whether the Indian models of Sleekbooks have AMD chips or only Ivy Bridge ones (see last item in specifications below).

AMD-based thin and light laptops are expected to be priced in India at around Rs 40,000 on an industry-wide basis, while those based on Intel Ivy Bridge are expected to be priced in the 50,000 range.

HP is currently the only brand to have an AMD Trinity-based (normal) laptop in India, the Pavilion G6-2005AX, priced at around Rs 32,600. However, since it is not based on Trinity’s low-voltage version, the battery life is only 3-4 hours and the model weighs 2.5 kg.

Just a week ago, Lenovo had become the first to launch Intel Ivy Bridge based Ultrabooks in India, with models starting at Rs 50,000 onwards.

What may disappoint some Ultrabook fans is the weight — all three model lines (from Lenovo and HP) have a weight of around 1.7-1.8 kg. Thickness is around 18 to 20 mm.

Many laptop users have been waiting for Ultrabooks and Sleekbooks with the expectation that they will provide mainstream notebook performance at netbook weight.

However, the Ultrabooks based on the third generation Core-i processors (and possibly AMD Trinity) seem to have weights exactly halfway between those of netbooks (around 1.1 kg) and older notebooks (2.5 kg.)

However, users can take comfort in other big plus for Ultrabooks and Sleekbooks — battery life. All, including the Sleekbooks, are promising a battery life of 8 to 9 hours. For practical purposes, that should mean around 6-7 hours, compared to about 4-5 hours on older, expensive laptops.

Both Lenovo’s and HP’s Ultrabooks have solid state drives (SSD), either combined with a normal hard-disk (Lenovo) or alone, extending the battery life.

Both have 14 and 15.6 inch versions, though the bigger ones tend to be heavier as well. From initial indications, they all come with regular HD (1366*768) displays and not full HD (1080p) displays.