Notebook, Netbook or Ultra Low Voltage?
The consumer wanting a mobile computing device has several options before them – at multiple price points and feature sets. Depending on their usage model, the device they choose may vary. If they are interested in a small form-factor device that they can easily carry with them to simply connect to the internet and surf the web, a netbook may be the best choice. For more compute intensive activities, a CULV (consumer ultra low voltage) machine could provide a mid-range price point option for consumers that don’t need the full features of a high end notebook or laptop.
As an employee of Intel and an avid user of mobile computing technology, I think the choices available are outstanding. As a shareholder, how do I feel about the potential cannibalization of higher ASP SKUs by lower price point devices? Again – I think choice is good. People will purchase the proper device for their needs. Sometimes that will mean that they are the proud owner of a top end notebook for their high octane computing needs, and will also purchase a ‘companion’ device such as an Atom-based netbook to take with them to satisfy their portable web surfing jones. CULV based machines are set to debut in June and provide an “…opportunity for upsell” as Sean Maloney stated at our investor meeting earlier this month. He continued on to state “We can reach new price points and we can also get paid for it.”
The way I interpret this: identify the market/customer needs, provide a choice of solutions to satisfy those needs, evolve your product line to improve upon past generation offerings, and finally continue to innovate to ensure you’re exceeding your customer’s and the industry’s expectations.