updated 01:05 pm EDT, Fri July 1, 2011
Samsung 9 Series gets cheaper models
Samsung took on complaints about a 9 Series premium over the MacBook Air on Friday by launching newer lower-cost models for each. The 11-inch X1B variants have more recent 1.3GHz Core i3 processors and drop in price. A basic A02US variant with 2GB of RAM and a 64GB solid-state drive will drop $150 to hit $1,049, and an A01US version will have 4GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD for $1,249.
New 13-inch models also get a processor switch. Although they keep in the X3A family, a new B01US trim uses a significantly faster 1.6GHz Core i5, 4GB of RAM, and a 128GB SSD for $1,349. A B02US edition adds a 256GB SSD for $1,649, and a high-speed A05US builds on that with a 1.5GHz Core i7 and 6GB of RAM for $2,049.
All of the systems have the same unique design as the original we tried in January with an 0.64-inch thick wedge that achieves its thin profile through a Duralumin alloy. Battery life reaches up to a MacBook Air-like seven hours of battery life, although Samsung isn't thought to be using Apple's tougher estimates.