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Why choose Intel Core M notebooks for the enterprise?

Intel Core M notebooks have arrived, and their light, thin design with power efficiency might be just what some enterprises need.

Windows devices sporting the latest Intel Core M processors are ridiculously thin and impossibly light. Their power, efficiency, feature sets and overall convenience will be a big draw for enterprise users.


The new Intel Core M notebooks -- the Samsung ATIV Book 9, Lenovo and NEC LaVie Z series, and Asus Transformer Book T300 Chi tablet -- redefine portability. Lenovo claims its 13-inch LaVie Z HZ550 is the lightest 13-inch PC in the world, weighing a scant 1.72 pounds and measuring 0.665 inches thin. By comparison, most other thin-and-light 13-inch laptops weigh around 3 pounds.

To be clear, these are full-on laptop PCs, each complete with a QWERTY keyboard (when connected to a keyboard dock, in the case of the Chi), USB inputs, HDMI port and a media card reader. The Intel Core M also promises performance levels near those of the flagship Core i series featured in today's most powerful laptops, and certainly stronger than the Atom processors that power the current generation of portable PCs.

Enterprise pros and cons

In addition, Intel Core M processors are efficient. They generate minimal heat and don't require a fan, which enables such thin designs. A new magnesium-lithium alloy, previously seen on the next-generation Hewlett-Packard EliteBooks, also helps maintain power efficiency while retaining the durability that business users require.

The Samsung ATIV Book 9 is likely to emerge as an enterprise favorite. Samsung claims to have overclocked its processor. In addition, software refinements alter the display opacity to thwart potential over-the-shoulder snoops, as well as maximize its brightness to an astounding 700 nits for an ultra-bright "outdoor mode."

These Intel Core M notebooks are hardly thin and light on price, however. The Chi starts at $700, and the others range up to $1,500.

Listen to more discussion about Intel Core M notebooks in this clip from the Modern Mobility Podcast:

Jamison Cush is executive editor of Technology Guide. Follow him on Twitter: @TGJamison.

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Would you use the new Intel Core M notebooks for business?
Probably not. We make limited use of laptops to begin with, and those we do have are still perfectly serviceable. This is an ongoing problem with technology manufacturers, actually - it's very hard to convince any business to upgrade their products before they feel it's absolutely necessary to do so, and nothing about the Core M as a must-have. Besides, it's still new, and I like to let new product lines mature before I buy in.
Thanks for the input, jamesz243. All very good points! Even though you wouldn't use Core Ms for practical reasons, do you think they show promise for business use cases?