Microsoft and its partners have found an opening against Apple. That's rare these days.
The Windows 8 touch screen is the first real change that has come to Windows laptops in a long time.
I would put it right up there with the trackpad and, more recently, the MacBook Pro Retina display.
And it's made more significant by the fact that Appleof a hybrid device via Tim Cook's refrigerator-toaster analogy. Which gives Apple's less-nimble Silicon Valley neighbor, Hewlett-Packard, a rare leg up.
Just check out. When I saw this, it instantly killed any craving I had had for Apple's MacBook Pro Retina.
The XT not only has a touch screen but a gorgeous one at that -- an IPS 1,920x1,080-pixel 15.6-incher.
It's pricey starting at $1,399 but that's still about $800 less that Apple's cheapest Retina Pro.
Of course, I haven't mentioned all of the convertibles that were announced this week, like(nor Microsoft's Surface tablet announced in June).
That's another hole in Apple's armor. Take the x2. You use it like a regular laptop, then, when the spirit moves you, detach the screen and use it as a tablet. (The only major downside I see right now is the display: a 1,366x768 screen is too pixelated and pales against the iPad's 2,048x1,536 Retina screen.)
But I'm focusing on standard clamshell laptops here. I don't know about you, but I like the idea of a laptop with a touch screen. All of the electronics are still under the keyboard -- not behind the tablet's screen -- which allows HP to pack in powerful processors and graphics.
Or to put it more simply, why not buy a laptop with a touch screen? It's there if you need it.
Is Apple vulnerable? You bet.
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