My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Apple MacBook Airs and Intel UltraBooks cometh – Time for a Common Standard on Power Adaptors

Monday, August 15, 2011

Apple MacBook Airs and Intel UltraBooks cometh – Time for a Common Standard on Power Adaptors

Little drops of water,
Little grains of sand,
Makes the mighty ocean
And the pleasant land.

Julia F. Carney, Little Things

Wednesday July 20th 2011AD was a memorable day for everyone who is a fan of anything Apple. This as a new Apple MacBook Air, which had originally made their debut in 2008AD and were upgraded, coincidentally on Wednesday 20th October 2010AD as stated in my Geezam Blog article entitled “MacBook Air and FLASH-based Harddrives - The Quest for Instant On”, also got their day in the Sun. As this is stale news, it is great for a post-mortem on my blog!

On Wednesday July 20th 2011AD, Apple had the Press Event to announce their latest Product updates as stated in the article “Apple updates MacBook Air, Mac Mini”, published Wednesday July 20th 2011AD, CNET News. This includes an upgrade of the Apple MacBook Airs to include ThunderBolt Ports, a follow on to Thursday February 24th 2011AD upgrade of the  13”, 15” and 17” Apple MacBook Pros to Intel’s Sandy Bridge Processors and the 10GBps capable ThunderBolt port as stated in my blog article entitled “MacBook Pro and Intel LightPeak - Thunderbolt and the Fantastic Mr. Fox”.

The main bits of news surrounds the Apple MacBook Air, both the 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch is summarized thus:
1.     10GBps Thunderbolt port
2.     Intel Core i5 or Core i7 chips (up from Intel Core-Duo)
3.     Backlit keyboard (it’s back)
4.     1333 MHz memory in up to 4GB
5.     US$999 price

    People, the ThunderCats Opening Theme, which as far as I am concerned is the official theme song for the newly upgraded  Apple MacBook Air!

    In addition to this, Apple has made the Apple Mac OS 10.7 aka Lion available for download on Apple iTunes, very clever, as by virtue of an online purchase, it verifies the identity of the download and makes copying Apple Mac OS 10.7 aka Lion pointless.

    This as the owner’s Credit Card Info is captured at the time of purchase in the Apple App store, thus making the download traceable and Apple MacBooks running illegal versions of Apple Mac OS 10.7 aka Lion easy to disable. Worse, each MacBook has its own unique UDID (Unique Data Item Description), data which is also compared at the time of purchase on Apple iTunes, so theft of Apple software is next to impossible.

    But alas, there is sad news for the cheapskates still holding on the Apple MacBook. This as Apple has decided to kill off the older Generation Apple MacBook with the plastic cases, roughly about two (2) generations ago in 2009AD.

    A rather logical move, as the Apple MacBook Air is a serious upgrade both in terms of architecture and form factor as GigaOM Reporter Erica Ogg opines in her ditty entitled “Apple bids farewell to the MacBook”, published July 20, 2011, 10:22am PT By Erica Ogg, GigaOM and the article “Apple quietly discontinues white MacBook”, published Wednesday July 20th 2011AD, CNET News.

    Undoubtedly, the recently Updated Apple Macbook Pro’s as stated in my blog article entitled “MacBook Pro and Intel LightPeak - Thunderbolt and the Fantastic Mr. Fox” may soon be hitting the scrapheap, as soon as Apple can figure out how to get more processing power out of the ultrathin MacBook Air and still preserve the stellar thirty (30) days of battery life!

    Quite expectedly too, the Refurbished market for older Apple products, particularly the new (read unused and unsold) and refurbished 2010 Apple Macbooks, are also getting a new lease on life, now selling for sub-US$900 in your local Best Buy (Luck devils, those Americans!) as stated in the article “New 2010 MacBook Air dips below $900, refurb $749”, published Wednesday July 20th 2011AD, CNET News.

    Now that the new Apple standard for Laptops is now clearly the Apple MacBook Air, they shall surely be taking the PC Industry for lunch, as prognosticated by Deutsche Bank analyst Chris Whitmore in the article “Analyst: Apple MacBook to make gains on PC”, published AUGUST 8, 2011 5:22 PM PDT By Brooke Crothers, CNET News - Nanotech - The Circuits Blog.
    Deutsche Bank analyst Chris Whitmore words make a better spiel, quote: “Our recent checks with the PC supply chain suggest overall orders have softened modestly in the past several weeks due to weaker European and U.S. Consumer NB (notebook) demand and more conservative back-to-school expectations from OEMs”.

    UltraBooks are the new standard for Laptops being urged upon Laptop maker by Intel to ensure their survival in the “Post-PC era” as declared by Apple CEO Steve Jobs, which I made a note of in my blog article entitled “Intel and the UltraBook -  Stephen King's MacBook and iPad Thinner Hex”.

    Hopefully too, with this new Intel UltraBook standard based around low-voltage Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge Processors, which mimics the Apple MacBook Air as declared in my blog article entitled Intel & Poison Ivy Bridge Processors - 22nm in an Iso-Linear of Their Own” will come a common standard for Power Adaptor for the PC Market!

    This as the new designs for Intel’s UltraBook specification mimic the Apple MacBook Air so logically (overuse of the word is deliberate in this article) the power requirements are on par with the Power Adaptor for the Apple MacBook Air. Instead of laptop makers having to make their own power Ports and Power Adaptors, this duty can be given over to Third Party companies to make and retailed separately at any Best Buy or Wal-Mart, thus reducing the cost of packaging.

    Foreseeably in the future, when one decides to purchase a low-power UltraBook, you can get what is effectively a Universal Power Adaptor that will fit the common port on your UltraBook, no matter which PC Maker makes it, be it Dell, Hewlett Packard, Toshiba, Lenovo, etc.

    This is much as it is today in the smartphone world in the EU with the Universal Charger Standard that Apple and other smartphone makers have become a part of to utilize the micro-USB port as stated in the article “Apple, others agree to universal cell phone charger standard in Europe”, published June 29, 2009 11:22 AM PDT by Marguerite Reardon, CNET News - Signal Strength.

    This unification of standards in terms of a Universal Charger Design in the smartphone world, which combats the phenomenon of Vampire “Ghost” or Vampire Power as stated in the article “AT&T to sell eco-friendly phone charger”, published March 17, 2010 1:52 PM PDT by Marguerite Reardon, CNET News - Signal Strength can also be adopted by Intel’s UltraBook standard and thus make UltraBooks even cheaper overall, serious competition to the now US$999 Apple MacBook Air.

    Throw in the idea of Integrated Solar Panels, thus cutting the Power Cord once and for all as stated in my blog article entitled “Alternative Energy and Solar Power - Die Another Day” and a Common Standard for Laptop Power Adaptors with nearly unlimited power may not seem such a far-fetched idea. 

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