Acer teases cheap ultrabook, downplays tablets


— 6:00 AM on August 25, 2011

Looks like Acer has been getting chatty—and in the wake of its first quarterly loss in a decade, who could blame it? DigiTimes got a few soundbites from Acer Chairman J.T. Wang, who teased his company's upcoming ultrabook and downplayed the impact of tablets on future notebook sales.

The most exciting news is no doubt Acer's plans for an ultrabook "with a price as low as $799," which is due out next month. Past reports have hinted that PC makers aren't thrilled with the bill-of-materials cost of ultrabooks, but if that $799 figure is accurate, Intel's promise of sub-$1,000 ultrabooks may come to fruition regardless.

On an unrelated note, Wang claimed that the tablet fever "is already starting to cool down," and he expects that a tag team of ultrabooks and Windows 8 will drive consumers back to laptops next year. That prediction sounds a little strange, since tablets have been picking up lots of momentum lately, and one of Windows 8's key selling points will be its tablet-friendly interface. However, Wang reportedly believes Windows 8 will "contribute a stronger sales boost to notebooks than tablet PCs."

Acer folks haven't shied away from bold predictions in the past—and time could validate them. In early 2010, for instance, Acer founder Stan Shih stated that U.S. computer brands "may disappear over the next 20 years, just like what happened to US television brands." Fast forward a year and a half, and HP is on the verge of selling its PC business, potentially to an Asian company.

   
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