With increasing sales of Android tablets worldwide, laptop makers are turning to Google's operating system in a bid to rejuvenate demand. The news comes after Windows 8 was largely blamed for a huge slump in global PC sales by research firm IDC.
Intel has begun promoting Android-powered convertible notebook-tablet devices despite its Windows focused Ultrabook brand, according to Digitimes which cites insiders at numerous laptop vendors.
Leading the way, Lenovo is reportedly going to launch an Android version of its 11in Yoga convertible laptop-cum-tablet in May, according to the sources. Following on from Lenovo, HP, Toshiba, Acer and Asus will all launch Android models in the third quarter.
Intel estimates the sweet spot for these Android-based notebooks is around $500 which means we could see them retailing for a similar price to the £399 Surface RT.
Asus already makes a number of Android tablets like this in its Transformer range. They come with keyboard docking stations turning them into makeshift laptops.
The sources state that the combination of consumer familiarity with Android combined with the addition of decent word- and document processing software, the new notebooks will be able to attract 'strong demand'.
Microsoft won't be too happy if this is the case, with the software giant preferring the vendors promote their Windows 8 tablets such as the HP Envy x2. Microsoft is reportedly working on a 7in version of the Surface to compete with the Google Nexus 7 and Apple iPad mini.