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Home / Hot Stuff / These laptops are first in line for Intel Core Ultra’s AI upgrades

These laptops are first in line for Intel Core Ultra’s AI upgrades

Acer, Asus, Lenovo and Samsung all have new notebooks on the way

Intel Core Ultra laptop launch line-up

You’ll find Intel chips inside plenty of the entries on Stuff’s best laptop lists, so it’s always a big deal when the CPU maker churns out a new generation of silicon. Sneaking in at the very end of 2023, Intel Core Ultra brings more power, better efficiency, and a dedicated Neural Processing Unit (NPU) for blitzing AI-based tasks. There won’t be a long wait to get hold of one, either: multiple laptop makers have announced new models, including Acer, Asus, Lenovo, MSI and Samsung.

Intel has ditched its long-running i3/i5/i7/i9 naming scheme for Core Ultra, instead going with Ultra 5, Ultra 7 and Ultra 9. The CPUs, which are also known by the infinitely cooler Meteor Lake codename internally, use a new chiplet-based design, This moves less demanding tasks to a “low power island”, while the performance cores manage the heavy lifting. The range is split between H-series chips with a built-in Arc GPU, and U-series chips that use Intel integrated graphics.

Multi-threaded performance has apparently taken an 11% step up over rivals including Apple’s M3 and the AMD Ryzen 7 series, while power consumption has dipped by 25% compared to the last-gen Core i7-1370P. The NPU then handles AI models such as Stable Diffusion, plus AI-assisted camera background blur, eye tracking and the like.

The top-tier Intel Core Ultra 9 185H processor won’t start shipping until 2024; it’s a 16-core, 22-thread monster that can run at 5.1GHz, with a base power of 45W. The Intel Core Ultra 7 165H launching this week sounds perfectly potent, though. It’s got 16 cores, 22 threads and a 5.0GHz boost clock.

Meet the new Intel Core Ultra family

Jonesing for an Intel Core Ultra-powered laptop already? Asus, Lenovo, Acer and Samsung can all help with that.

Asus Zenbook 14 OLED

The Asus Zenbook 14 OLED blends suave styling and a gorgeous OLED touchscreen, a full selection of full-size ports and a battery good enough for up to 15 hours away from the mains, in a chassis that weighs a scant 1.28kg and is less than 15mm thick. It’s on sale directly from the Asus web store now, with prices starting from $1300.

Samsung Galaxy Book4 series press pic

Samsung has a trio of Galaxy Book4 models. The Book4 Pro sticks with a familiar laptop form factor, the Book4 Pro 360 adds convertible cleverness, and Book4 Ultra includes dedicated graphics for a little extra gaming or rendering muscle. All three look visually identical to the Galaxy Book3 generation, only with Intel Core Ultra internals and touchscreen support across the line-up. The Book4 Pro will arrive in early 2024 in 14in and 16in screen sizes. The other two will follow shortly after, with 16in screens only.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon 12th gen

The Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon and Thinkpad X1 2-in-1 have been given subtle but significant overhauls from the previous generation, shrinking and slimming down in every direction to be even more portable than ever. OLED display upgrades, Wi-Fi 7, higher quality webcams and a magnetically docked stylus for the convertible are the biggest differences, with a choice of Intel Core Ultra processors on the inside.

Acer is also getting in on the action with the work- and productivity-minded Swift Go 14, and the more gamer-friendly Predator Triton Neo 16. Both are revised versions of existing models, with Intel Core Ultra CPUs. Naturally the Predator also comes with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070 series dedicated graphics chip, which should be a good match for its 3.2K resolution, 165Hz refresh rate screen. The Swift Go 14 will go on sale in the US from January for $800, and the UK in the second half of 2024 for £899. Expect to pay at least $1500 for the Predator Triton Neo 16 in the US from March onwards, or €1799 in Europe.

Profile image of Tom Morgan-Freelander Tom Morgan-Freelander Deputy Editor


A tech addict from about the age of three (seriously, he's got the VHS tapes to prove it), Tom's been writing about gadgets, games and everything in between for the past decade, with a slight diversion into the world of automotive in between. As Deputy Editor, Tom keeps the website ticking along, jam-packed with the hottest gadget news and reviews.  When he's not on the road attending launch events, you can usually find him scouring the web for the latest news, to feed Stuff readers' insatiable appetite for tech.

Areas of expertise

Smartphones/tablets/computing, cameras, home cinema, automotive, virtual reality, gaming