Samsung's sleek Series 9 laptop was a proto-ultrabook— one of the first post-MacBook Air PCs to offer a super slim profile and speedy solid state drive. Since then, the category has exploded, with scores of new ultrabooks from essentially every manufacturer in the game scheduled to arrive next year. Staking its claim on the ultrabook craze in earnest, the company has announced the Series 5 Ultra: a new, thinner laptop that adheres to official category guidelines put forth by Intel.

The Series 5 Ultra currently comes in two editions: a 13" model and a 14" model. Interestingly, the 14-incher essentially splits the difference between the ultrabook ideal and its larger, more feature-packed cousins. In addition to the larger-than-standard display, it even makes room for an optical drive, which, like the MacBook Air, most ultrabooks have discarded.

The Series 5 also bosts HDMI and ethernet ports on both models. The 14" comes in at 20.9mm thick and 1.8kg in weight, while the 13" is considerably slimmer at 14.9mm, 1.4 kg. The laptops will be available in South Korea in December, while a a US release date has not yet been announced.

[via The Verge]