Acer has showcased its first convertible Chromebook, the R 11.
The Chromebook sports a 11.6-inch HD (1366 x 768 resolution) screen, with 10-point touch which means you can use tap, swipe and pinch-to-zoom gestures. It also has an HD webcam.
The 19.2mm thick device comes with an aluminum top cover and weighs under 1.25kg. It features Intel Celeron processors, ultra-fast 2x2 MIMO 802.11ac wireless connection, and a USB 3.0 port
The R 11 can be configured into one of four modes. Along with the classic laptop, there's a 'display' mode, which hides the keyboard for viewing and gaming, while 'tent mode' aims to create a better viewing and touch experience in confined spaces such as when traveling on a plane or train. 'Pad' mode (which supports landscape and portrait) is aimed at playing and browsing.
Chromebooks are slimmed down laptops running Google's Chrome OS operating system. They're designed to be used almost exclusively online with most data and apps residing in the cloud. As a result, they don't need to do so much local data processing so can use lower-specced hardware and tend to be sold cheaper than standard laptops. They've proved successful in education and there are some indications that enterprise customers are increasingly interested too.
Worldwide Chromebook sales to end users are expected to reach 7.3 million units in 2015, a 27 percent increase from 2014, according to Gartner. Education is the primary market for Chromebooks and represented 72 percent of the global Chromebook market in 2014 the analysts said.
Acer said its new Chromebook will be available in North America in October from $299 and in EMEA from November at €299.
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