Print 21 comment(s) - last by drycrust3.. on May 5 at 2:11 PM

Refreshed lineup fills many mobile niches

The struggles of Taiwanese computer and gadgetmaker Acer, Inc. (TPE:2353) have been well documented.  

CEO and chairman J.T. Wang in Dec. 2011 summarized the mess his company was in remarking that Acer products were "cheap" and "unprofitable".  The company has fantasized about being more like Apple, Inc. (AAPL) and even issued bold threats to Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) over the decision to launch the Surface tablet.  However, Acer appears far from Apple-like performance earning little profit; and its tablets have failed to compete in the market, giving little reason to take its Surface comments seriously.

But Acer is looking to breathe some life into its struggling line with a broad refresh announced today.

I. New Notebooks

The refresh brings new notebook computers -- the Aspire V5 and V7 -- a new hybrid Windows 8 laptop, the Aspire R7; a new ultrabook, the Aspire P3, and a pair of budget Android Iconia tablets.

The Aspire V5 and V7 line refresh brings NVIDIA Corp. (NVDA) GT7xxM Kepler graphics.  The V5 and V7 are available with five kinds of screens -- a 15.6-inch 1080p (1920x1080 pixel) screen, a 15.6-inch "standard definition" (1366x768 pixel) screen, a 14-inch 1080p display, a 14-inch std. def. display, and a multi-touch-enabled 11.6-inch (1366x768 pixel) display.  The larger form factors feature four speakers with Dolby audio, while the smaller 11.6-inch model boasts a 3 lb. weight.  The V7 is essentially Acer's low end Ultrabooks and are identical to the V5 other than adding some new ports, SSD support, and a "silky touch" bottom finish.

Acer Aspire
(The Aspire V5 11.6-inch)
Acer Aspire V7
(The Aspire V7 15.6-inch)

The P3 Ultrabooks is 0.77-in. (19.55 mm) -- significantly thicker than the 3 to 17 mm thickness of Apple's latest MacBook Air.  It weighs 3.03 lb (about 27 percent heavier than the air), and packs the same 11.6-inch touch display as the V5/V7.  It comes with 60 or 120 GB SSD options; a 720p front-facing webcam; a 5MP rear camera; and Intel Corp. (INTC) Core i3 or i5 procesosrs.  Starting price for the i3-equipped, 60 GB SSD model is $799.99 USD.
Acer Aspire R7
Acer Aspire R7
(The Aspire P3 Ultrabook 11.6-inch)

Lastly on the notebook front Acer is offering up a 15.6-inch 1080 convertible with an "Ezel hinge" that allows the touch screen to be repositioned over the keyboard or be put in full tablet mode.  
Acer Aspire P3
(The Aspire R715.6-inch)
The hybrid design allows the user to quickly pull forward the screen for touch interaction, then pop it back for standard typing.  The laptop features an Intel Core i5 processor, 6GB of memory, a 500GB hard drive, a 24GB SSD, and the four Dolby 8-watt speakers.  It will start shipping May 17, priced at $999.99 USD.

All of the new laptops feature backlit keyboards.

II. Android Iconia Line Gets Refreshed With Budget 7.x-inchers

Also announced was a pair of budget Android Jelly Bean tablets.  The first, the Iconia A1 is headed to the North American market in June priced at $199.99 and packing a 7.9-inch (1024x768 pixel) display.  

Acer Iconia

(The Iconia A1)

The budget design also packs a MediaTek Inc. (TPE:2454) quad-core 1.2 GHz ARM processor, Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11 b/g/n wireless, front-facing and rear (5 MP) cameras, either 8 or 16 GB of NAND flash, microSD, and microUSB.  The tablet weighs 0.90 lb and is 0.44-in (11.1 mm) thin.

The second tablet, the Iconia B1, is initially headed to Europe and Africa.  It has a 7-inch display (1024x600 pixels), 1.2 GHz dual- or quad-core processor options from Mediatek, either 8 or 16 GB of NAND flash, microSD, front and rear cameras, identical wireless options to the A1, and the ability the ability to connect via a 3G modem in select models.  

Acer Iconia B1
(The Iconia B1)

The Iconia B1 in its cheapest (dual-core, 8 GB NAND) receives similar budget pricing -- €129 (Wi-Fi)/€179 (3G) (roughly $169 USD for the Wi-Fi, $234 USD for the 3G model).

Let us know your thoughts on this major Acer product rollout.

Source: Acer

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No digitizer?
By mitchelvii on 5/3/2013 8:09:16 PM , Rating: 3
These designs all look very nice but why not included a digitizer pen? It adds just that extra level of functionality that might not be used often but sure comes in handy when you need it.

Here's an idea!
By piroroadkill on 5/4/2013 6:37:04 PM , Rating: 3
Acer: fix your site so I can easily filter by MY requirements. Currently I have to have some kind of idea of the model I want. Who knows whether I want Aspire this or whatever that.

Just let me specify what I want, and I'll see if you have it.

13", 1600x900, discrete graphics, desktop-class CPU, very light and thin subnotebook.

My goddamn Sony Vaio Z can do this, and I'm having a hard time finding a replacement. No, I don't want 1080p in this area, I'd rather leave my Windows 7 desktop at 100% scale. 1600x900 is also just about right on the discrete graphics that I can fit in this TDP envelope.

Dat p3
By BRB29 on 5/3/2013 3:35:05 PM , Rating: 2
That design looks intriguing but I can't imagine that thing being very good to type. With it being the same size as a laptop, I might as well just get the v7 or v5.

By gp597 on 5/3/13, Rating: -1
RE: Mispell
By Motoman on 5/3/2013 4:00:22 PM , Rating: 1 want to point out a typo, then point out a typo. Either is a valid spelling so it wouldn't even pop up in the spell-checker.

But you can stop pretending society is ending and the author is dumb because of one errant "e."

RE: Mispell
By dbwells on 5/3/2013 4:30:03 PM , Rating: 5
P.S. I think you mean "misspell", so apparently you are what happened to our society!


RE: Mispell
By Motoman on 5/3/2013 6:31:47 PM , Rating: 2
LOL. <3

RE: Mispell
By drycrust3 on 5/5/2013 2:11:22 PM , Rating: 1

Why do you use the present tense and not the past tense (Misspelt)?

Nobody wants W8, nobody wants Acer
By Nyu on 5/3/13, Rating: -1
By zinc0099 on 5/3/2013 6:55:47 PM , Rating: 2
What other OS would they put on there? MS is going to stop selling keys to windows 7 to OEMs. Ubuntu was a flop as a OS in the OEM market. Just ask Dell how that went... Like or not MS is the king of the PC market, apple is number 2.

By bug77 on 5/3/13, Rating: -1
RE: Seriously?
By zinc0099 on 5/3/2013 6:54:04 PM , Rating: 5
Why is the PC market still selling such low end screens?!?! Most tablets have higher res screens on them. I will never buy a laptop without a 1080p screen ever again.

RE: Seriously?
By inighthawki on 5/3/2013 9:44:18 PM , Rating: 3
Did you do a ctrl+f for "1366" then not even read the rest of the sentence?

The V5 and V7 are available with five kinds of screens -- a 15.6-inch 1080p (1920x1080 pixel) screen , a 15.6-inch "standard definition" (1366x768 pixel) screen, a 14-inch 1080p display , a 14-inch std. def. display, and a multi-touch-enabled 11.6-inch (1366x768 pixel) display.

The 11.6" screen is the only one without 1080p, and it is the one that needs it the least.

RE: Seriously?
By StevoLincolnite on 5/4/2013 5:34:00 AM , Rating: 3
Still. Pixel count wise, even the 11.6 model should have 1080P.

Back in the late 90's (That's about 15 years ago folks!)I had a 17" CRT with a 1280x1024 screen, that's about 1.3 million pixels.
15 years later with more modern screen technology and they are trying to sell us 1366x768 screens which is about 30% less pixels (About 1 million) than what I had 15 years ago?

No thanks! 1080P as a minimum today please!

RE: Seriously?
By Mint on 5/4/2013 12:15:11 PM , Rating: 2
1366x768 is 20% less, not 30% less.

1080p on 11.6" can be a problem for fixed resolution graphics and UI elements in Windows programs designed for more typical dpi. The only way around it is to use a 2560x1600 panel (like the Nexus 10, rMBP) and use 200% scaling on everything but text rendering (and photos in the browser and photo viewer).

That adds a lot of cost and is of questionable value for an 11.6" with Acer branding. They can't get away with rMBP pricing.

RE: Seriously?
By bug77 on 5/4/2013 5:38:49 AM , Rating: 1
Reading your own quote, there's a 15.6" in there, too. That's the one I was complaining about, actually.

RE: Seriously?
By inighthawki on 5/4/2013 5:30:21 PM , Rating: 3
Right, but it clearly states that it comes in two flavors, so why is there any complaint? It's like going out for ice cream and complaining that they carry too many flavors beyond the one you wanted.

The 1366x768 laptops are clearly not geared towards people who want the best.

look alikes
By Nortel on 5/3/13, Rating: -1
RE: look alikes
By ComputerJuice on 5/3/2013 4:17:49 PM , Rating: 5
OH GAWD! NOoooo! Someone made a silver laptop... QUICK! APPLE SUE! SUE! SUUUUE! Before someone buys one thinking they are getting a MAC.

Oh, except it aside from being silver, it looks nothing like a mac, it looks like a silver PC.

However, I agree the A1 does look like an IPAD from the screen side of things.

RE: look alikes
By chadlowe1000 on 5/3/13, Rating: 0
RE: look alikes
By inighthawki on 5/3/2013 9:45:47 PM , Rating: 2
Neither look like macbooks to me. The only similarity I see is that the casing is silver and the keyboard keys are black. Hardly what I would call a look-alike.

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