Intel: Ultrabooks Get Down to Business
Before you start recommending Ultrabooks (super thin, sleek notebooks) to business customers, The VAR Guy has a simple piece of advice: Look for third generation Intel Core vPro processor-based systems (assuming they work as advertised). Alas, some vendors are pitching consumer Ultrabooks into the business market. But that’s a huge mistake, especially since the third generation Intel Core vPro family (formerly codenamed Ivy Bridge) is finally arriving for Ultrabooks.
The VAR Guy has already warned readers about the Ultrabook Consumer vs. Ultrabook Business debate. Plus, some small businesses have been buying consumer Ultrabooks through retail channels, Nathan Eddy reported.
There are two problems so far in the Ultrabook market, The VAR Guy believes:
- Some PC makers have been shipping consumer-class Ultrabooks disguised as business-class machines.
- Most consumers and small business owners have no idea there’s a difference between consumer and business Ultrabooks.
That confusion ends now, however, with the third-generation Intel Core vPro processor-based systems. The design includes business-centric capabilities like threat management; identity and access; data protection; and monitoring and remediation. Plus channel partners or IT managers can offer user identity protection, locking lost or stolen devices to protect system data.
Intel is also connecting the dots between its hardware and its McAfee security software. An example: The new hardware design supports McAfee ePolicy Orchestrator (ePO) Deep Command. It allows IT professionals to remotely fix compromised PCs and apply security patches.
Most major PC makers are introducing Ultrabooks that leverage the third generation Intel Core vPro family — such as the Lenovo X1 Carbon, slated to debut in mid-2012. Dilip Bhatia, VP and GM of the ThinkPad business unit, shows off the X1 in the photo above.
Side note: The VAR Guy needs to give AMD equal time on the topic of ultra portables. Ultrabook designs, after all, aren’t the only game in town. But if that is your game, make sure you pitch true business Ultrabooks rather than the consumer alternatives, which lack many management and security capabilities that businesses require.