HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif.--Intel CEO Paul Otellini said today at an Intel conference that touch-based ultrathin notebooks running Windows 8 will be a big focus for the company in the coming 12 months.
Otellini said that to lure mainstream laptop buyers, Intel and its partners need to get the cost of touch technology under control. "To hit the volume price points, we need to span $699 and up, and that's the goal for next year," he said, speaking at the Intel Capital Global Summit in Huntington Beach, Calif.
"To do that, we have to get touch to a lower cost. This is particularly important, as we move to the launch of Windows 8. The iPad and the iPhone have made touch a paradigm," he said.
Windows 8 in 2012 will usher in touch-based "ultrabooks," as Intel calls the form factor. "Starting with Windows 8, you have a mainstream operating system incorporating touch. Our view is that in the ultrabook lines, touch is a pretty critical enabler. When users see that new Windows interface, they're going to want to touch it. If the screen does nothing, you have disappointed [the] consumer," Otellini said.
"And in order for us to have an excited consumer at $699 and $799 price points, you have to be able to accelerate the reduction in [touch] cost. That's the kind of investment we'll make around the Ultrabook Fund." That is a $300 million fund.
In related news, Intel Capital today unveiled a $100 million Intel Capital AppUp Fund. The fund will invest in companies producing infrastructure, middleware, applications and digital content across a range of devices.
Key areas include cross-platform technologies such as HTML5 as well as experiences designed specifically for Ultrabooks, Intel said.