Earlier tonight Samsung introduced a convertible featuring a 13.3-inch 3200 x 1800 display that runs both Windows 8 and Android. If the convertible form factor is a little too weird for you, Samsung also introduced an Ultrabook with the very same display.

Like many of the Ultrabooks announced in Taipei, the ATIV Book 9 Plus is a marriage of MacBook Air and rMBP. You get a form factor that's very similar to the 13-inch MBA, but with a display that's clearly aimed at the more expensive rMBP. Where the ATIV Book 9 Plus falls in pricing will be very interesting to see.

Internally, there's a familiar refrain: Core i5-4200U (Haswell ULT), DDR3L and an SSD. Like the ATIV Q, the SSD in this case is one of Samsung's own - the MZNTD128HAGM, a 6Gbps SATA M.2 drive. The machine ships with an integrated 55Wh battery and weighs 1.39 kg. Samsung claims up to 12 hours of battery life.

The notebook looked good in person. I'm a fan of the hidden SD card reader with spring loaded door. Just like we saw with the ATIV Q, the ATIV Book 9 Plus was running Windows 8 but I fully expect that it's meant for Windows 8.1's improved handling of high DPI displays.

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  • bji - Saturday, June 22, 2013 - link

    You don't *have* to go with an even divisor of the native resolution when you have a display with that high of a DPI. I run my 15 inch rMBP in 1680x1050 which is 0.555x the native resolution of 2880x1800. Yeah it's not even scaling but I cannot see any obvious artifacts even if I look very closely.

    1600x900 on a native 2560x1440 display is 0.625, which is very similar to 1920x1200 on my 2880x1800 display (0.666) and it looks just as fine to me.
  • ananduser - Friday, June 21, 2013 - link

    Engadget has claimed that both Ativ Books have an excellent trackpad, Apple-like in fact, just like the previous gen Ativ 7 they reviewed; but who cares about the trackpad when you have a touchscreen in your face.
  • pixelstuff - Friday, June 21, 2013 - link

    That's good news. The trackpad is the first thing I test out when looking for a laptop. Apple nearly perfected the trackpad and makes the majority of other designs feel like you are metaphorically walking through water instead of air.
  • Impulses - Thursday, June 27, 2013 - link

    Anyone that's actually gonna work would care, reaching over the keyboard constantly is still an awkward situation (and I say that based off experience with my ASUS Transformer), and busting the mouse out isn't always practical or even an option. Personally I detest pads regardless of whether it's Apple's or not, but a touchscreen is an even poorer substitution (outside of tablet mode or the like obviously).
  • DanNeely - Friday, June 21, 2013 - link

    The main reason for wanting this screen over the Zenbooks is that non-HDPI apps look better when scaled by an integer factor and the ATIV Book 9+ gives 1600x900 instead of 1280x720; giving both HDPI and high effective resolution to have a decent amount of stuff on the screen at the same time.
  • DanNeely - Friday, June 21, 2013 - link

    And as for the GPU, HD 5100 is only available in a 28W TDP package; vs 15W for lesser IGPs. This should give the Samsung significantly better battery life. I do however stand with the people hoping the i7 model has HD5000 graphics (lower clocked GT3).
  • Connoisseur - Friday, June 21, 2013 - link

    Yeah I know the 12 hour battery life figure is crazy good and I'm sure people have use cases for it but I'd be okay with much better graphics horsepower and "only" 8-10 hour battery life (assuming the zenbook infinity can deliver that). It's not like my smartphone where the battery drains fast in a poor connection when i need it to be always on. For me, worst case scenario with a laptop is maybe I want to take a cross country flight and want to watch a few movies or play some games en route. If I can get a solid 5-6 hours with heavy usage or 8-10 hours with light, I'd be pretty happy with that.
  • VengenceIsMine - Friday, June 21, 2013 - link

    If Samsung is accurate on their battery life claims then the MacBook Air is going to have much tougher competition than it has had in years, though arguably the Sony VAIO Z two years ago was the best of the pre-ultra book rivals.
    Advantage Air:
    Probably still better keyboard & touchpad, Maybe fractionally better battery life?, Thunderbolt (really small advantage until market for accessories & monitors goes somewhere), PCIe SSD: Specwise a big advantage but not that much in the real world, SSD read speed is becoming less and less of a performance chokepoint, especially for desktop usage.

    Advantage Samsung
    HUGE screen advantage. So what if the GPU has trouble driving it in 3d, this is an ultrabook not a gaming rig, Sexier industrial design (it's thinner, lighter & newer than the MacBook Air). From a sales perspective it is so much easier to sell big flashy things like that screen than the possibility that the Thunderbolt market might actually turn into something
  • hakime - Friday, June 21, 2013 - link

    "it's thinner, lighter & newer than the MacBook Air"

    Lighter, really? Seem you should check your facts. The Samsung thing weights 3.06 pounds while the MBA weights 2.96 pound. Still think that it's lighter?

    Thinner? Hum... I don't think so. The Samsung thing is 0.54 inches while the MBA is 0.11-0.68 inches. You have to be quite a Samsung lover to claim that the Samsung thing is thinner. Overall, the MBA is indeed thinner.

    Sexier industrial design? Newer than the MacBook Air? Really? As far as I can see it and you must be quite blind not to see it, the Samsung thing is just an MBA design knock-off (like Samsung always does and anyone buying their stuff should feel ashamed) with a slightly modified shape and a different color. A knock-off of something can't be newer or more sexy than the original because it's just a knock-off after all.

    "Maybe fractionally better battery life". Really? I have never seen a Samsung device that fulfills Samsung claims on battery life. They often throw a number out of an unrealistic test case and right now they had to throw 12 hours if they didn't want to feel embarrassed in front of the MBA. In fact I don't believe one second that this thing can reach something even close to 12 hours with such amount of pixels (which are here just for marketing) and with a GPU way more stressed to drive them (GPU which is by the way not powerful enough to do so hence the marketing resolution). It has maybe a bigger battery as it's heavier and thicker than the MBA, but I don't think it's enough.

    "Thunderbolt (really small advantage until market for accessories & monitors goes somewhere)". Really. You would have said the entire opposite if Thunderbolt would be present in the Samsung thing. Suddenly having a super fast connection technology is not relevant, when in fact you find already today on the market a lot of PCI chassis, video and audio devices, mass storage drives ready for Thunderbolt. You don't see it because you don't want to or because being on pc, you haven't noticed that the market is already moving fast towards Thunderbolt. Now you may say ah yeah but those are professional gears. Well maybe, Thunderbolt is for speed otherwise use USB. But it remains that Thunderbolt is today a big advantage if you want to use your laptop for you know real work, not as a toy.

    "PCIe SSD: Specwise a big advantage but not that much in the real world, SSD read speed is becoming less and less of a performance chokepoint, especially for desktop usage." Really? Again you would have said the complete opposite if the Samsung thing was built with PCIe SSD. Now suddenly performance does not matter, yes sure nice try! And your claim about SSD read speed becoming less important is total non sense. It's more relevant than ever in fact.

    "From a sales perspective it is so much easier to sell big flashy things" Yes sure flashy thing that is an unbalanced computer in terms of performance (slow GPU that can't really handle the number of pixels, false claims on battery life to hide the negative impact of the screen resolution on real world battery life, no fast connections) that has this screen resolution for the sole reason of marketing purposes. And you would be mistaken to judge this screen on resolution alone when color accuracy is also very important and don't expect too much in that regard with this Samsung thing.

    Here is my advise. If you want an ultra book that offers no compromise on performance and battery life, that is designed to be very fast (GPU capabilities consistent with the screen resolution, fast CPU, very fast connectivity, fast wireless with 802.11ac Wifi ac and Bluetooth 4.0 ) and for real work, buy a MBA.

    If you are looking for a MBA knock-off that has a ton of pixels with a GPU too slow to drive them, poor real world battery life, and which runs a toy OS that is a total mess and frustrating to use (yes I am talking about Windows 8), then spend you money with Samsung. But you being a fool.
  • inighthawki - Friday, June 21, 2013 - link

    Lol you are a funny one sir...

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