While Ultrabooks are increasing in both popularity and affordability, the devices are still not as cheap as Intel would like them to be. The processor manufacturer initially recommended the use of high-quality materials, such as metals or alloys for the chassis. This would improve the looks of the Ultrabooks, allowing them to compete with the design of Apple's MacBook Air. Intel has recently stated that partners are also allowed to use cheaper plastic enclosures, to make the thin laptops cheaper.
Another way to decrease the price is to cut the margin of the manufacturers. This turns out to be difficult, as market analyst IHS iSuppli reveals that the margins are already beneath 7%, leaving little room for price drops. In a final attempt to make the Ultrabooks cheaper, Intel has dropped the price of its low-voltage Core i3 Ivy Bridge processor, Chinese sources claim. At the moment, Intel sells its only ULV Core i3 processor at $225 (£145), which will be decreased by $25 to $27, a price cut of about 11%.
Intel has yet to confirm the rumours.
The profit margins of laptop manufacturers are decreasing