HP Ultrabook Vs. MacBook Air: HP Drops Price, Threatening Apple Sales
HP Envy SpectreXT Ultrabook metal not glass HP

Best Buy has dropped the price on Hewlett-Packard's Folio ultrabook down to its lowest ever, just $798. The light weight laptop, which is similar in design to Apple's MacBook Air, got its new low price on Wednesday as rumors of a MacBook Air price drop to $799 continue to grow.

HP Folio 13 (model 13-1035nr) is currently priced at $797.99 at Best Buy, which includes a Sandy Bridge 1.6GHz Intel Core i5 processor; a 13.3-inch display, 4GB of memory, and a 128GB solid state drive (more specs).

This is a new low and an aggressive price for the HP Core i5 configuration, said Deron Kershaw, an analyst at Gap Intelligence, which tracks laptop pricing at retail stores, according to CNET.

HP announced a number of new ultrabook models on Wednesday, with the cheapest priced at just $749. These will come with both Sandy Bridge as well as the newer Ivy Bridge chips.

Among the new lightweight laptops is the 13-inch Envy Specter XT. HP is also rolling out 14 and 15.6-inch Envy ultrabooks ($749 and $799 respectively). These new models will come with 1,366x768-pixel-resolution display for both screen sizes 4GB of RAM, and a 500GB hard drive with 32GB of SSD cache. Ports include two USB 3.0, one USB 2.0, HDMI, Gigabit Ethernet, and an SD card slot.

Best Buy is already aggressively marketing HP's current glass-encased 14-inch Envy Spectre (model 14-3010NR). The price on this laptop model was dropped from $1,399 to $1,283 on Tuesday. Best Buy's prices change frequently, so don't count on the current price to stay stable. For example, the Toshiba Portege Z835 ultrabook has bounced between $899.99 $799.99 week to week.

For the now the MacBook Air costs significantly more than HP's alternatives. Apple's lightweight computer costs $1000 and upwards directly from the Apple Store, and around the same from Best Buy. Even HP's Folio 13 only costs $899.99. Considering that HP's ultrabooks lack the magical 'Apple appeal,' their strongest selling point is a significantly lower price.