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Toshiba Announces $1600 13.3-Inch Ultrabook with 2560x1440 display

By Wesley Fenlon

Toshiba gets into the high DPI game with a pricey new Ultrabook.

Toshiba is following in the footsteps of Apple's MacBook Pro with Retina and Google's Chromebook PIxel with a new crazy-high-DPI Ultrabook called the KIRAbook. The KIRAbook crams a 2560x1440 pixel resolution--the norm for today's 27-inch monitors--down into a 13.3-inch panel.

The Windows 8 Ultrabook will be available in touch and non-touch variants and weighs 2.6 pounds, which is impressively light--in fact, it's within spitting distance of the 11-inch MacBook Air's 2.38 pounds. TheNextWeb reports that the KIRAbook will ship with a 256GB SSD, 8GB of RAM and a choice between an i5 and an i7 processor.

Toshiba's press release brags that the Ultrabook's body is constructed from magnesium alloy much stronger than aluminum alloy, and that "a high-capacity Li-Polymer battery is incorporated to let users work unplugged throughout the day." Tests will prove whether the laptop can actually last all day. The KIRAbook is running on Intel's third-generation Core i platform (Ivy Bridge) rather than Haswell, launching later this year, which is expected to deliver major year-over-year improvements to battery life.

The entry-level KIRAbook will cost $1600. Step-up models (upgrading to that i7 processor, adding touch capability) will top out at $2000. Even at $1600, the KIRAbook costs far more than the $1000 price point Intel hoped to maintain for the Ultrabook category. In fact, it's $100 more expensive than Apple's $1500 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina and $300 more than the Chromebook Pixel. Google's laptop offers less bang-for-your-buck, however, with a limited 32GB of storage and runs Chrome OS rather than the more powerful Windows.