Monday Acer America announced (opens in new tab) that its new Acer AC7000 is the first Chromebook to hit North American retail shelves. The Wi-Fi version will supposedly be available this month, followed by a 3G model sometime later this summer. The current model costs a mere $349.99, cheaper than many Android-based tablets already saturating the market.
Under the hood, the new Acer AC7000 features the Intel Atom N570 dual-core processor and 2 GB of DDR3 memory. There's also a built-in 16 GB SSD for installing apps and storing files, an 11.6-inch HD Widescreen CineCrystalLED-backlit LCD, two USB 2.0 ports, a 4-in-1 card reader, an HD 1.3 MP webcam w/ LED indicator, HDMI output, Acer'sInviLink Nplify 802.11b/g/n adapter, and more.
"We are pleased to be one of Google’s leading launch partners delivering a new experience in cloud computing for customers of our new Acer AC700 Chromebook," said Arif Maskatia, CTO, Acer. "As a leader in the mobile computing space, we strive to offer customers the widest range of mobile computing devices to support the many ways our customers connect to their world. The Acer AC700 represents the future of computing as it shows how they can access the cloud to vastly improve the simplicity, security and speed of their online experience."
Additionally, Acer's Chromebook weighs 2.95 pounds, measures just one-inch thick, and uses a 6-cell battery promising six hours of constant use. The company also claims that the device will boot in less than 10 seconds, naturally thanks to Google's thin Chrome operating system that doesn't rely on bloated code but instead depends on the Internet aka cloud-based storage and web-based applications like Google Docs, Gmail and Google Calendar.
"The Acer AC700 running the Chrome operating system is designed to defend against the ongoing threat of malware and viruses by employing the principle of "defense in depth" to provide multiple layers of protection, including sandboxing, data encryption, and verified boot," the company added.
Amazon currently has the Acer Chromebook listed for the $349.99 pricetag (opens in new tab), but the company doesn't plan to ship the Acer product until mid-July. Amazon also has a dedicated Chromebook store which can be accessed here (opens in new tab).