Samsung One-Ups The MacBook Air With The Series 9… For Now

Samsung One-Ups The MacBook Air With The Series 9… For Now

Despite Apple being their number one customer, Samsung’s done a healthy trade in ripping-off Cupertino’s gadgets and selling their own, often patent infringing doppelgangers… and with their new Series 9 ultraportable, Samsung now has the MacBook Air square in their sights.

Not that the Series 9 ultraportable is likely to cause the same legal problems for Samsung as their Samsung Galaxy S, Galaxy Player and Galaxy Tab 10.1 Android devices have caused them. Less a photocopy than a bonafide competitor, the Series 9 is a Windows-based aluminum bodied laptop that weighs the same as the MacBook Air, while beating it in both specs and thinness.

Measuring just 0.64 inches (or 0.04 inches thinner than the MacBook Air), the Samsung Series 9 starts at just $1,159.99 and comes with a 64GB SSD, a 3 second boot-up time, a 7 hour battery life and 2GB of RAM. So far, that’s pretty identical to the $999 entry-level MacBook Air for about $60, but the Samsung Series 9 has one big advantage over the Air: a 1.33GHz Intel Core i3 CPU that should sizably outperform the Core 2 Duo backed MacBook Air.

Not that that will last for long. The MacBook Air is due for an update in the coming months, and if Samsung can shove a Sandy Bridge chip into their ultraportable while maintaining maximum battery life, Apple can do it too. And probably better. And probably while maintaining that $999 price point.

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  • ZingoZ

    Samsung Series 9: Windows 7, MacBook Air: OS X Snow Leopard. Why totally ignoring that they run completley different OS?! For me (and I guess most Mac users) the OS is much more important than minor differences in the specs.Why totally ignoring that they run completley different OS?! For me (and I guess most Mac users) the OS is much more important than minor differences in the specs.

  • Paul

    It may start at .64 inches, but on the samsung website it doesn’t say it gets thinner, where as the Air gos to just .11 inch. It is also heavier, at 2.88 pounds versus 2.3 pounds for the Air. I don’t see the air getting smaller but it’ll definitely have thunderbolt, updated CPU and storage. 

  • Shrike

     “the Samsung Series 9 starts at just $1,159.99 and comes with a 64GB SSD, a 3 second boot-up time, a 7 hour battery life and 2GB of RAM. So far, that’s pretty identical to the $999 entry-level MacBook Air for about $60″

    Since when was 1159.99 – 999 = 60? You forgot a “1″ there. And the last time I checked, $160 is a decent premium (15%), and you’re paying for a system with more CPU, but not as good of a GPU.

    This will change when Sandy Bridge MBAs are out, but today, the MBA is a better value for those who are not required to buy MS Windows, assuming the Samsung will have better drivers for their machine than Apple will have for the MBA. Don’t really know to be sure.

  • Asspath

    The problem Apple is facing now and in the future is that they have basically become the design house for the pc industry.  Everyone just waits for them to come out with a product and then the photo copiers start working overtime.  Google, now Samsung.  The opponents have changed, but the same plan is still the same.

  • dzakon

    It’s sad how little Samsung can innovate. I mean, not even a ONE, single fresh idea. They should stick to manufacturing components, TVs and fridges.

    They could experiment with trackpad, keyboard, ports.. ANYTHING.. but they’re just so frickin’ unimaginative, it’s sad really.

  • Jesper Andersson

     It doesn’t have the same wedge-shape as the Macbook Air, so even though it’s thinner I’d guess that the Air still has less volume than the Samsung. That would explain that the Samsung is heavier.

  • Sean Liu

    Oh flamebait galore lol

  • Sean Liu

    Oh flamebait galore lol

  • Robert Norris Hills

    iPhail fans complaining because Samsung 1-ups them again. 

    QQ more. 

    Samsung Galaxys2 – Samsung wins at phones. 
    Samsung Galaxy tab – Samsung wins at tables. 
    Samsung series 9 – Samsung wins at laptops. 

    I don’t see how you think this laptop is patient infringing, the only difference between it and 1000000 other notebooks is that its made out of aluminium. 

    Was apple the first laptop manufacturer to make a laptop out of aluminium? 

    NO! 

    I don’t see how you call it copying when they are producing better products. 

    Its called being outdone. 

  • Charles

    It looks cool… Except for the corner where what I assume is the power port is. Oh well. It may have a better CPU but running windows just isn’t an option. OSX all the way!

  • Cesarduartes

    sure is a neat piece of hardware, but I`d better wait to buy a new PC when windows 8 launches. (or at least, its beta test program)

  • Gouldsc

    Apple is at its best when it has healthy competition nipping at it’s heels. At the very least, it will encourage them to keep their prices reasonable.

  • Berenj

    In the market, went and looked at the Mac Air, and then went and looked at the samsung at tigerdirect, The Samsung is a peice of crap, sure its got better componenets, but the look and feel is nothing close the mac air. Im waiting till June for the Mac Air refresh. BTW, I hate OSX and everythign apple stands for. But cannot deny the inovation of the mac air size and feel and aesthetics.  Dont Buy the Samsung, these writers are getting free laptops, so you know, write something good about it….. 

  • Phox

    It may be sad, but atleast they’re stepping up to the plate… And maybe if they didnt make most of the components for their phones/laptops, they would be at a loss.

    Apple needs to build things themselves, the processors in the ipad2 and iphone 4 were made by samsung… Who’se copying who when apple doesnt win as many of the lawsuites as they should? 

  • ctt1wbw

     The specs might be teh similar, but it still runs Windows.  Sorry, just not as good as OS X.

  • iHate_Is_Back

     Whoa all Mac heads out there hold on to your friggin seats because I’m about to temporarily jump on your bandwagon.

    @facebook-1005677430:disqus ………… you’re an idiot.

    First of all Samsuck laptops generally suck and have sucked for years.

    Secondly Samsuck phones are garbage and Android updates on samsuck handsets are far and in between. Here’s a novel idea, hey Samsuck stop copying other people and try creating your own handset GUI for a change.

    Thirdly The Galaxy Tab sucks. It sucks monkey balls so badly I wouldn’t use it if they paid me.

    Finally hey everyone at Samsung just because everyone calls your company Samsuck doesn’t mean you have to go out of your way and prove us right by putting out crappy products. Why don’t you try putting your heads together and actually creating a good product?

    ———-
    ………..
    ……………
    I feel like I just joined the dark side

  • luxivore

    This looks great. Of course it runs shitty windows, so my only question is; will it hackintosh?  I love OSX, it’s the reason I buy Apply products, but I hate being tied in to one hardware manufacturer. My current samsung hackintosh is great; there’s nothing wrong with samsung notebooks per se. This looks like it would make a very cool hackintosh. 

  • kevin

    actually, the 13 inch macbook air is 2.9 pounds. there’s also an 11 inch samsung 9 (2.31 lbs) that’s not to be confused with the 13 inch samsung 9 (2.88 lbs). but the 11 inch air is definitely lighter than the 11 inch samsung series 9

About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his wife and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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