Premium netbooks weren't all that alluring with single-core Atom CPUs and Intel integrated graphics. However, new platforms from AMD and Intel are considerably more potent, making the next wave of slightly upscale ultraportables a little more intriguing. According to DigiTimes, Acer and Asus are both prepping "luxurious" netbooks for the fourth quarter of this year.
If you were hoping for subtle elegance, you're probably out of luck. Acer has reportedly opted for Ferrari branding, which means the company's next 11.6" ultraportable is sure to sport a brilliant red paint job. Fusion will be found under the hood, with AMD's upcoming "Ontario" APU said to be running the show. Ontario is specifically designed for ultraportables and combines DirectX 11-class integrated graphics with a new Bobcat CPU core.
Asus will have an appropriate rival in the 12.1" Eee PC VX6, which will sport Lamborghini logos and Intel's new dual-core Atom N550 CPU. A second-generation Ion GPU will reportedly give that system a graphics boost, which it will need to justify the $699 asking price quoted by DigiTimes. Odds are the Eee PC will come dressed in bright yellow like previous Lamborghini laptops, but Asus could surprise with the Reventonesque angles and matte-black finish employed on its G73 gaming notebook.