Last month, Acer released a Chromebook with a shockingly low price tag—$199—and surprisingly decent specs—a 17W Sandy Bridge CPU, 2GB of RAM, and 320GB of mechanical storage. There was just one catch: the battery life, which Acer pegs at 3.5 hours.
Well, Acer has now added a new model. Priced at $299, the C710-2605 looks largely similar to its low-stamina sibling, but it has a beefier battery with a six-hour rating. Acer has also doubled the RAM to 4GB and increased the hard-drive capacity to 500GB. However, the system retains its cheaper counterpart's 11.6" 1366x768 display and 1.1GHz Celeron 847 processor.
If you ask me, that sounds like a pretty solid deal for $299. I wasn't very impressed with Google's Chrome OS on the $249 Samsung Chromebook, but that system has an ARM processor and won't accommodate a Windows installation. The C710-2605, on the other hand, should be able to run Windows 8 x64 (or Ubuntu) without complaint—barring some bizarre firmware-level restrictions, of course, but the $199 Chromebook C7 doesn't seem to have any of those.