Acer, which recently moved to selling its notebooks via Coles, says that it has no plans to copy the new Apple iPad, say senior executives, instead the company is looking to expand its ultra thin netbook offering with new models set to be launched in Australia soon. The company is also set to launch new 3D display monitors.Among the new range will be a Google Android-based netbook, with some insiders tipping the use of a Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset in some models.
In Australia Acer has moved into the supermarket retail channel, with Coles marketing an Acer notebook for $387. However, there is no news on when Acer Australia will move into the smartphone market after several carriers rejected its offering. It is now believed that the company is working with a major retailer to launch a smartphone in the first half of 2010.
Acer Taiwan president Scott Lin said yesterday that designing an iPad-like device would not pose any technical challenges; however, the Taiwanese company had no plans to launch a touchscreen tablet this year.
He said that Apple is able to support the iPad through its iTunes ecosystem, while few other makers, including Acer, have comparable experience in operating an online store.
Lin told DigiTimes that he believes the iPad is unlikely to impact the notebook/netbook markets as the two products target completely different consumer groups.
For 2010, Acer expects its large-size traditional notebooks to account for 50-60 per cent of total notebook shipments with netbooks at around 20 per cent and ultra-thin notebooks about 20-30 per cent. Acer will also push notebooks with a thickness of less than 2cm as a major product for 2010, Lin noted.
Lin also cited research firm figures, saying that Acer shipped about 31 million notebooks in 2009.
Acer is also set to move into the 3D monitor market with a low-cost 23″ screen that comes complete with 3D glasses. The screen will go on sale in Australia later this year.
The 23.6w-inch GD235HZ display is Acer’s first with 3D capability. The company sees strong growth potential for the 3D monitor market, particularly for PC gaming and video viewing.
The GD235HZ has FullHD 3D viewing when paired with Nvidia’s 3D Vision active-shutter glasses. These are sold as a separate kit, which contains the glasses, a wireless USB adapter and the software to work with the display.
The monitor can be used without the glasses. It features a 129Hz refresh rate, 2ms response rate and 1,000:1 contrast ratio, along with HDMI, DVI and VGA ports. Suggested retail is expected to be around $599.