Apple recently cut the price of its MacBook Air line by a small margin of $100, but even the moderate price cut might be enough to lure buyers away from Intel and their partners’ ultrabooks. Even though non-Apple ultrabooks start at lower prices, around $700, Intel believes that the MacBook Air price cut is motivation enough to lower costs and prices. In July, the company plans to hold a meeting to discuss options with Taiwanese manufacturers.
Of course, the price ofcomponents can prove challenging to cut and the already narrow profit margins can be hard to shake. Intel and its partners plan to use fiberglass reinforced plastic for the housing instead of expensive aluminum alloys and switch to cylindrical or prismatic shaped batteries based on the cheaper technology of the lithium-ion battery. So far, mostly lithium-polymer batteries are used in ultrabooks, but these are very expensive. In addition, Intel plans to promote the use of hybrid hard disks with integrated flash memory instead of the expensive pure SSDs.