Luxury ultrathin laptops from Apple and Dell were once ultra-hip. Now they quietly age at Apple and Dell online stores.
Both the aluminum-clad Apple MacBook Air and Dell Adamo were introduced with the kind of fanfare rarely seen for laptops. Apple CEO Steve Jobs introduced the MacBook Air at Macworld in January 2008 as the piece de resistance of the conference. (See video below.) And, in a rare cameo appearance, Intel Chief Executive Paul Otellini took the stage with Jobs to underscore the significance of the Air.
Dell's 0.65-inch thin Adamo was introduced at the 2009 Consumer Electronics Show with an equal dose of theater.
That's ancient history now. Apple hasn't upgraded the MacBook Air in tech eons (that's more than a year in actual time) and Dell's Adamo teeters on the edge of existence on the company's Web site: the original Adamo is now down to one $999 model. (Note: it's no longer offered in "pearl" and the high-end 2.1GHz model is not available.) The Adamo XPS has become little more than a curiosity piece on the floor of select Best Buy stores (I saw one at Best Buy in Silicon Valley recently with a buyer-proof price of over $1,900) as it staves off rumors of its demise.
So, what happened?… Read more