Acer Announces Ultra Low Cost Cloudbooks With Windows 10 Homeby Brett Howse on August 4, 2015 5:00 AM EST
Today Acer is launching a new line of low cost notebooks, which are branded as Acer Aspire One Cloudbooks. There will be an 11.6-inch model, and a 14-inch model, and Acer manages to get both models under $200. We have seen some surprisingly decent notebooks around this price range, such as the HP Stream 11, but Acer has managed to move the barrier to entry even farther down.
The 11.6-inch model starts at only $170, with a bump in storage boosting the price to $190, or for $199.99 you can step up to the 14-inch model. For this price you get a 1366x768 resolution display, which is likely going to be a TN panel. The fanless design is powered by the 14nm Intel Celeron N3050 processor, which is a dual-core model with a base frequency of 1.6 GHz and turbo frequency of 2.16 GHz. This is going to be Airmont cores, similar to the previous N series Celerons with Silvermont. Performance expectations should be in check, but with a 6 watt TDP it should be able to maintain its peak frequency fairly well. As a comparison, the Surface 3 has four Airmont cores at up to 2.4 GHz, but with just a 2 watt scenario design power. Graphics will also get a boost over the older Celerons, with the Airmont cores now paired with Gen 8 graphics and 12 execution units rather than just 4 Gen 7 units available on the older chips.
One of the ways Acer was able to hit these price points was due to the storage available. The 11.6-inch model starts with just 16 GB of storage, and even with the Windows 10 storage features which can save even more space than Windows 8.1’s WIMBoot, 16 GB is not a lot for a Windows install. For those interested in this device, the $20 boost to 32 GB would be a wise investment. The 14-inch model starts with 32 GB and will also offer a 64 GB model later on. There is a SD card slot, but Windows 10 has not yet implemented the same features as Windows Phone has for SD card use, so no Windows Store apps can be installed to it yet, although that is coming later.
|Acer Aspire One Cloudbook|
|Cloudbook 11||Cloudbook 14|
|CPU||Intel Celeron N3050
Dual-core Airmont 1.6-2.16GHz
Intel HD Graphics 12 EUs 320-600MHz
|Storage||16-32 GB eMMC||32-64 GB eMMC|
|Display||11.6" 1366x768||14.0" 1366x768|
|Ports||USB 3.0 x 1
USB 2.0 x 1
SD Card Slot
|Dimensions||H: 0.70" (17.8 mm)
W: 11.5" (292.1 mm)
D: 7.95" (201.93 mm)
|H: 0.70" (17.8 mm)
W: 13.36" (339.3 mm)
D: 9.25" (235.0 mm)
|Weight||2.54 lbs (1.15 kg)||3.5 lbs (1.59 kg)|
|Battery Life||Up to 7 hours||Up to 6 hours|
Both models will feature 802.11ac wireless, which is nice to see since that seems to be one of the first cuts on a budget notebook. Acer is positioning these devices as Cloudbooks, and they include one year of Office 365 Personal and the included 1 TB of OneDrive storage, and Acer is also promoting their cloud based abApps to help in keeping files in sync with smartphones and tablets.
While inexpensive, Acer has done well with the design. Both models are just 0.7-inches thick, and the smaller device comes in at just 2.54 lbs, and the larger 14-inch model tips the scales at 3.5 lbs. The textured pattern is finished in a mineral grey which looks quite sharp.
The Acer Cloudbooks will be available starting this month for the 11.6-inch model, with the 14-inch version coming in September.
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BrokenCrayons - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - linkI was really hoping that the transition to 14nm processors would also come along with an upgrade in this price bracket to 64GB of local storage. I'm really disappointed to see 16GB models still entering the market and for Acer's 11.6 inch model to not offer a 64GB version. Were it not for the local storage limitations, I'd be really tempted to buy one to replace my current netbook and laptop.
MrSpadge - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - linkI'd rather hope for SD card slots to get around the storage limitations than 14 nm CPUs.
chris00780 - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - linkIs the RAM soldered on?
Brett Howse - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - linkPretty much any laptop that is 0.7" thick has soldered on memory.
Jon Tseng - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - link14nm Airmont with 12 EUs?
The cute thing is that for $170 thing could probably run Skyrim or Bioshock perfectly playably... Provided you can find the space for the install of course!! (SD card I guess)
BrokenCrayons - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - linkBased on the rest of the specifications, I think it'd have problems with Skyrim (can't speak for Bioshock) because of the 2GB RAM thing which would be partly allocated to the GPU and is probably single channel due to costs. I can't envision Skyrim running overly well even at fairly low settings.
damianrobertjones - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - link16GB storage?! That'll hurt after awhile.
Has anyone noticed that various review sites MISSING off the hard drive details for Chromebooks?
bleh0 - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - linkWith small Windows notebook coming down to prices like this is there any reason to purchase a chromebook?
webdoctors - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - linkNo, there really isn't since with the windows ones you can easily install Ubuntu on there without weird hacking of BIOS or workarounds for VPN apps.
I have a chromebook 2 and no regrets, the 1080p screen is gorgeous and the portability is incredible. If they released a 1080p version of these ASUS books for an extra $100 they'd definitely have a chromebook killer.
They may already have one, if one doesn't care about the screen resolution, these are fine. The storage is adequate since SD cards will store most apps.
Mr Perfect - Tuesday, August 4, 2015 - linkMaybe it's just me, but I'd love to see machines in this form factor with better specs. Bump the price up to, say $400, and throw in a 1080p screen, 128GB - 256GB of storage, 4GB ram, an 8+ hour battery... For some reason, you have to jump up to $1000 Ultrabooks to get anything remotely nice in a small for factor. Where's the midrange?