Windows 10 bandwagon: Acer jumps aboard with two new PCs

Acer has unveiled two of the first new Windows 10 PCs expected to arrive from Microsoft’s hardware partners this month.

After the Windows 10 New York City hardware showcase last week, Acer has unveiled two PCs that take advantage of new features in Microsoft’s latest operating system.

At a press conference on Monday in Taipei, the Taiwanese hardware vendor took the wraps off its Aspire R14 notebook and the hybrid tablet-notebook Aspire Z3-700.

“We worked closely with the Acer team throughout the development of these new devices, which ensures our customers can make the most of Windows 10,” Microsoft’s chief of Windows and devices Terry Myerson said in a blog entry.

“You can also see the promise of the familiar and consistent experience we are delivering with Windows 10 extending across their device lineup, from notebooks to PCs to phones,” he added.

The devices showcase Microsoft’s efforts to bring a common experience across notebooks, PCs, and phones with Skype; Cortana, its voice assistant; Continuum, a feature that enables a phone to act as a PC when connected to a separate display; Microsoft’s new Edge browser; and the Xbox app.

Myerson noted that the Aspire R14 and Z3-700 also feature optimised audio to take advantage of Cortana’s functionality, and both offer Acer’s BluelightShield technology, which reduces blue light emission from the screen, reducing eye strain.

The Aspire R14 has a 14-inch screen, which can be folded over for tablet use or swivelled 180 degrees for use in a demonstration. The device is 1.85cm thick and weighs in at 1.58kg (3.5lb) with 8GB RAM, solid-state drives, and integrated MU-MIMO to speed up wireless downloads.

The Aspire R14 will be available in late October with prices in North America starting at about $699, and €799 in Europe.

The Aspire Z3-700 is Acer’s device for work and play, operating as a notebook with a keyboard or just as a tablet with a large 17.3-inch display. The device comes with either Intel Pentium or Celeron processors and offers up to 8GB RAM. It will ship with either SSD or a traditional hard disk. The display has a full HD 1,920×1,080 pixel resolution and, like Microsoft’s Surface Pro, comes with a stylus.

The Acer Aspire Z3-700 will be available in EMEA by the end of the year starting at €599. As noted by CNET, the device has a battery life of five hours and a kickstand to support notebook mode. Acer has yet to release US pricing or availability.

Earlier last month at the IFA trade show, Acer unveiled a few new smartphones that will be available running either Windows 10 or Android. At the higher end of the devices it unveiled was the Windows 10-powered Jade Primo, which Acer billed as a ‘PC in your pocket’ and which showcases Microsoft’s Continuum.

Jade Primo will have a 5.5-inch super AMOLED display and will run on a Snapdragon 808 processor. The rear-facing camera will be 21-megapixels, while the selfie snapper will be eight megapixels.

There are still no details on pricing and availability yet but Acer used today’s notebook launch to show off Continuum again.

Acer is the first of a slew of partners expected to announce new Windows 10 devices.

Following on from last week’s Windows 10 events by Dell, ASUS, and HP, Microsoft execs will be joining Toshiba for its Windows 10 event tomorrow in Tokyo and Lenovo on October 19 in San Francisco.

Author: Liam Tung
Source: ZDNet