CES postscript: Laptop touch, like it or not

The laptop has been reinvented at CES.

Or maybe I should say there was a vigorous effort to reinvent the laptop. Because we do not know how to reach success was until next year at this time.

Intel CES booth - still a strong presence in the central hall CES - was an unequivocal message: Basic touch happened.

Windows 8 convertibles detachable touchscreen laptops and tablets simply Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Samsung, Acer, Asus, Lenovo, Toshiba, Sony, and other covered Intel booth.

And just to make sure the message was clear touchscreen, Intel issued an edict partners during his keynote PC CES: ultrabooks all next generation based on its "Haswell" chip must touch.

What does this mean for consumers? Your next laptop will probably touch, whether you like it or not.

And from what I saw on the Intel booth (and other stands, as Samsung), this is how it will break down:

Convertible: Convertible, like the HP EliteBook and Lenovo Yoga Revolution, have touch screens that swivel can not be detached from the unit.

The important thing to remember here is that the Intel processor and associated electronics are still under the keyboard, so that these systems tend to be more efficient because the design offers more opportunity to keep the processor cool.

Removable They are essentially tablets with keyboard dock well integrated. They include the new Lenovo ThinkPad Helix, HP Envy x2, and ATIV Samsung Smart PC.

Detachable electronic processor placed behind the screen. And generally requires PC manufacturers use a lower performance, more efficient power chip like Intel's "Clover Trail" Atom.

One of the few exceptions to this rule is the ThinkPad Helix, which manages to cram a mainstream Intel Ivy Bridge chip in a tablet.

And by the way, Intel is now trying to get more PC manufacturers to do so. It just started shipping a new Y Series Ivy Bridge processor that is more energy efficient than the propeller.

However, the battery life is not terrible, and Ivy Bridge - chips, even more energy - they still need fans to keep cool.Touch-screen laptop: This is a classic clamshell laptop with a touch screen. There are already many of these out there, including the Sony Vaio T13 series, the Acer Aspire S7, Asus VivoBook X202E and HP TouchSmart Spectrum XT.

And expect much more. Maybe this time next year, the preponderance of laptops on display at your local Best Buy will have touchscreens.

Tablet: And then there are devices that are marketed as standalone Windows 8 tablets. This would include ElitePad 900 HP and Dell Latitude tablet 10.

Tablets that can use the full version of Windows 8 (based on Intel chips) and Windows tablets RT (based on ARM chips) offer good battery life and a lightweight design and slim, but will not be very fast. In other words, do not expect to multitask Microsoft Office, Photoshop and other demanding applications without putting the device to its knees.

Not all laptops will hit, of course. Lappies high-end gaming and business laptops will be available with touch screens for the foreseeable future. But I suspect that, ultimately, they will even touch.
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