Just a few weeks ago Sony reportedly declined to offer a reason why it didn't want to jump on the ultrabook bandwagon. But speculation pointed to a company concerned over the high cost and low profit margins associated with Intel's new form factor. Sony also previously launched its own Z-series of ultra-portable VAIO laptops sporting high-performance hardware crammed inside an ultra-thin 0.66-inch design.
But apparently Sony has changed its mind, and is planning to release an ultrabook variant sometime before Christmas 2011. Intel CEO Paul Otellini actually spilled the beans in an interview with FOX News, but didn't provide any additional details, only that eleven companies will offer ultrabooks this Christmas, including Sony.
As for the other manufacturers in line for a pre-Christmas release, these include Lenovo, Asus, Acer and Toshiba. HP will also reportedly offer an ultrabook model this year, and possibly Samsung and LG. MSI and Fujitsu may also release ultrabooks by New Years Eve, followed by Gigabyte and Dell in early 2012.
During the interview, Otellini said that sixty more ultrabook designs will be unleashed in 2012 once Intel intros Ivy Bridge. He also talked about his reaction to the news that HP was considering kicking out its PC division, either as a spin-off or an outright sale. He said was shocked just like everyone else in the industry.
"I was stunned and [thought] what was he thinking?" he said. "I hope that they will decide to stay in the business. To leave consumer digital electronics, to me, would be a very strange decision to make when your whole business model is tied up into imaging and those kinds of things."
Otellini also plans to tell the new CEO to "stay the course," and to not "jettison" its PC business. Maybe he'll use the same convincing tactics on HP that he used on an ultrabook-reluctant Sony.