HP and Dell Deliver Ultrabooks to Rival Apple’s MacBook Air

HP (NYSE:HPQ) and Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) are releasing their own versions of the “ultrabook,” a light, thin laptop, to go head-to-head with Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) MacBook Air. Hewlett-Packard released its Envy Spectre 14 ultrabook at the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show yesterday while Dell is also preparing to release something similar.

The Envy 14 Spectre will be similar in size to the Apple MacBook Air, but cost about $100 more.  Bloomberg quoted Page Murray, a vice president of marketing at HP, who said the model would appeal to the “saavy fashionista” market because of its features and sleek design. Among its selling points are a glossy black glass top, finger-sensing pad, extra bright screen, enhanced Beats Audio sound, and a version of Adobe’s (NASDAQ:ADBE) Photoshop software that comes standard. In regards to price wars, Murray said, “There’s always someone who wants to win the race to the bottom.  It usually ends with a splat.”

Jason Maynard, an analyst at Wells Fargo & Co. (NYSE:WFC), disagrees with HP’s pricing strategy. Bloomberg cited the analyst who said that in order for ultrabooks to compete, “They will need to be priced significantly below the MacBook Air.” HP did release a lower price point ultrabook in December called the HP Folio, which retails for $900. The reveal of the Envy Spectre 14 did little to affect HP’s stock price.

Here’s how these laptock stocks are reacting to the news today:

Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ): HPQ shares recently traded at $26.57, down $0.12, or 0.45%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $21.50 to $49.39. Volume today was 225,195 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 18,347,900 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 8.00, while trailing earnings are $3.32 per share.

Dell Inc. (NASDAQ:DELL): DELL shares recently traded at $15.67, down $0.15, or 0.95%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $12.99 to $17.60. Volume today was 321,486 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 20,155,100 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 8.07, while trailing earnings are $1.94 per share.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL): AAPL shares recently traded at $422.16, down $1.08, or 0.26%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $310.50 to $427.75. Volume today was 161,856 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 14,590,000 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 15.25, while trailing earnings are $27.68 per share.

International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM): IBM shares recently traded at $180.89, down $0.42, or 0.23%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $147.67 to $194.90. Volume today was 97,914 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 5,251,220 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 14.26, while trailing earnings are $12.69 per share.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ashley Cloninger at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com