Samsung is pretty much the biggest player on the mobile market behind Apple, which is really impressive considering they were a mediocre electronics company just a decade ago and have been most well-known for affordable quality LCD TVs. The company has had an amazing success with the Galaxy S and Galaxy S2 smartphones, as well as the Galaxy Note hybrid (which sold over 1 million units already) and right now they’re getting ready to announce the Galaxy S3 at a separate event (yep, MWC is not big enough to announce their next generation handset).

Of course, Samsung couldn’t stay away from the newly formed Ultrabooks market, and last year, they’ve released a slew of devices that have really amazed everyone, with the most impressive being the Series 9 Ultrabook, which looks very unique, has a high build quality and some powerful internal hardware.

Samsung's Second Generation Series 9 Ultrabooks

Samsung's Second Generation Series 9 Ultrabooks : Hands-On Review

The Best Choice When It Comes to Quality, Performance and Style

And this year, they’re coming out with an update to the series, which adds a few changes and improvements to the existing 13.3 inch model, as well as a new 15 inch Ultrabook for those who want a bigger display and more power on the go.

This second generation Series 9 is pretty much the best choice on the market when it comes to quality, power and style in one package. Samsung doesn’t even market them as Ultrabooks – they’re just the next generation of laptops, and that’s a great move, seeing as Apple thought of the same thing with their upcoming MacBooks.

The new Series 9 has a notably different design than the first generation – both the 13.3 and 15 inch versions sport a unibody construction instead of the sandwiched build of the previous model, which makes them much sturdier. The overall look reminds more of the MacBook Air and is less unique than the first Series 9, but the difference is still big enough to avoid any confusion in a store, for example. Interestingly, both the 15 and 13.3 models are only 12.9 mm thick, even though the former has a bigger battery (obviously, Samsung used the extra space wisely).

Decent Performance Comparable to Any Other Ultrabook On the Market

The performance is similar on both models, as are the hardware specs. Both Ultrabookscome with a Core i5-2467M or Core i7-2637M processor, 4 to 8 GB of RAM, a 128 GB or 256 GB SSD and the integrated Intel HD 3000 graphics adapter – that’s pretty much the same configurations that the MacBook Air or the Asus UX31 have. The display has a 1600x900 pixels resolution on both models, making it comfortable for both work and entertainment, although the 15 inch model is better for watching movies or even working in Photoshop or other intensive apps.

The only difference between the 13.3 inch and 15 inch models seems to be the battery life – the former should last up to 7 hours of use, while the latter can reach 10 hours. Both laptops also feature a fast boot technology that lets you power them on in less than 2 seconds to the Windows desktop – an impressive feat, but we’ve already seen it on the Asus UX31.

A High Price that Can Actually be Justified

The Samsung Series 9 Ultrabooks have already hit the market, and the starting price is $1399 and $1499 for the 13.3 inch and 15 inch models, respectively. That’s quite a high price for an Ultrabook (and the Core i7 version is even more expensive), but given the premium positioning that Samsung takes with them and the amazing build quality, it’s easy to justify it.