Asus has entered the ultra-portable laptop wars with the launch of its ZenBook 3 which the company says is thinner, lighter and twice as fast as Apple's MacBook, making it the "most prestigious laptop in the world." However, HP's Spectre retains the title of being the world's thinnest laptop.
At the launch of the new laptop at trade show Computex in Taipei on Monday, Asus chairman Jonney Shih unveiled the new laptop alongside a pair of Surface clones called the Transformer 3 and Transformer 3 Pro, a trio of smartphones (ZenFone 3, ZenFone 3 Deluxe and ZenFone 3 Ultra) and a personal robot called Zenbo.
The ZenBook 3 weighs in at just over 900g and just 11.9mm, which compares with 1.2kg and 12.3mm for the company's previous model, which was already one of the best ultra-portable laptops on the market. Apple's MacBook, which is the most recognizable laptop on the market, weighs in at 920g and 13.1mm at its thickest point. Asus' laptop also features a larger 12.5-inch screen compared to Apple's 12-inch display.
While the ZenBook 3 is very thin and light, HP's recently launched Spectre laptop measures only 10.4mm though it does weigh in at 1.1kg, featuring a 13.3-inch screen. The reason Asus has been able to create such a thin and light laptop is a new "aerospace-grade aluminum alloy" which the company says is 40 percent stronger than aluminum typically used in laptops.
Asus has also incorporated a fingerprint sensor into the laptop which will work with the Windows 10 security feature Windows Hello. Like the MacBook, the ZenBook 3 has a USB 3.0 port for charging and the company says users will be able to quickly charge the battery to 60 percent in just 49 minutes. Total battery life on a full charge is nine hours, Asus says, which is not as good as Apple's MacBook.
The new laptop will sport a range of Intel's latest six generation Core i chips, which will give it a significant advantage over Apple's MacBook, which is only available with the company's Core m chips which offer better efficiency but less processing power.
Asus has not announced a release date for the new laptop yet, but has revealed that pricing will start at $999 which is cheaper than the entry level MacBook and HP Spectre.