Updated 10/14/16, 10:45am CT: The Acer Swift 7 is now available in US markets, starting at $999.
Acer unveiled a slew of thin, light and portable laptops during IFA, some of which will feature Intel’s upcoming 7th generation Kaby Lake processors. The new Swift series are the thinnest of the bunch, whereas the Spin series offers convertible touch screen systems. Acer also added a system to Chromebook line, too, which has a convertible design and Google Play support.
Thinner Than A Centimeter: Acer Swift Series
The Acer Swift series is aimed at consumers seeking a slim, portable laptop, and its members--the Swift 7, Swift 5 and Swift 3--will all feature 7th generation Intel (Kaby Lake) processors.
Acer crammed a 7th generation Intel Core i5 processor into the Swift 7 line and claimed it to be the world’s first sub-1 cm laptop. The Swift 7 measures 0.39 inches and only weighs only 2.48lbs. The Swift 7’s unibody design will be available in a black and gold-toned finish, and the 13.3-inch display is constructed with Corning Gorilla Glass.
It's tempting to think that the "Core i5" Kaby Lake chip in the Swift 7 will make for impressive performance, but the reality is that because Intel removed the "Core m" branding from some of its CPUs with this tock, it's completely unclear which Core i5 processor is in this or any notebook without a specific SKU, which Acer has thus far not provided. (You can see the full list of Kaby Lake SKUs in our review.)
No less noteworthy, in any case, are the Swift 5 and Swift 3. The Swift 5, while not as thin as the Swift 7, can be configured with up to a 7th generation Intel "Core i7" (Kaby Lake) processor. The Swift 3 line will be available in both Skylake and Kaby Lake models. The Swift 5 will be 0.57 inches thick and 3lbs, whereas the Swift 3 is slightly larger at 0.7 inches and 3.3lbs.
Finally, the Swift 1 targets the budget laptop market, offering Intel Pentium and Celeron models and up to 12 hours of battery life. Acer didn't specify which generation of Intel processors these would be, but because Intel hasn't announced any Pentium or Celeron Kaby Lake SKUs, we're assuming these are Skylake chips. It measures 0.7 inches thick and weighs 3.5lbs. The specs illustrate the Swift 1 as a no-nonsense, budget system packed with only the essentials, making it ideal for students.
The Swift 7 and Swift 3 will be available in North America in October; the Swift 5 and Swift 1 will arrive later in November.
|Header Cell - Column 0||Acer Swift 7||Acer Swift 5||Acer Swift 3||Acer Swift 1|
|Screen||13.3” FHD (1920x1080) IPS display withCorning Gorilla Glass||14” FHD (1920x1080) IPS display||14” FHD (1920x1080) IPS display14” HD (1366x768) display||14” HD (1366x768)Acer ComfyView display|
|Processor||7th Generation Intel Core i5||7th Generation Intel Core i3/i5/i7||6th/7th Generation Intel Core i7/i5/i3||Intel Pentium or Intel Celeron|
|Memory||8 GB of onboard LPDDR3 memory||4 / 8 GB of onboard LPDDR3 memory||4 / 8 GB of onboard DDR4 memory||4 GB of onboard DDR3L|
|Graphics||Intel HD Graphics 615||Intel HD Graphics||Intel HD Graphics 520||Intel HD Graphics 520|
|Storage||SSD: 256 GB||SSD: Up to 512 GB||SSD: Up to 512 GB||eMMC: Up to 128 GB|
|Dimensions||324.6 x 229.6 x 9.98 mm (WxDxH)||327 x 228 x 14.58 mm (WxDxH)||341 x 236.6 x 17.95 mm (WxDxH)||339.4 x 234.9 x 17.9 mm (WxDxH)|
|Weight||1.12 kg||1.36 kg||1.5 kg||1.6 kg|
|Battery Life||Up to 9 hours||Up to 13 hours||Up to 10 hours (FHD panel)Up to 12 hours (HD panel)||Up to 12 hours|
|Camera||HD webcam with HDR support||HD webcam with HDR support||HD webcam with HDR support||Acer Webcam|
Multiple Portable Convertibles: Acer Spin Series
First and foremost among Acer's Spin series of convertible laptops is the Acer Spin 7, which will feature a 7th generation (Kaby Lake) Intel "Core i7" processor. The touchscreen measures in at 14 inches, and like the Swift 7, is constructed with Corning Gorilla Glass. The Spin models aren't quite as thin and light as the Swift line, but the Spin 7 is still quite portable, measuring 0.43 inches thick and weighing 2.6lbs.
Acer’s Spin 5 and Spin 3 are larger than the Spin 7 and have trimmed-down processor options. In return, the Spin 5 and Spin 3 feature increased memory, storage and battery capacities. The Spin 5 offers a proprietary 360° dual-torque hinge that Acer claimed is wobble-free. The Spin 3 has ample room for dual storage and features a backlit keyboard.
Acer also provided a budget-friendly convertible touchscreen laptop, the Spin 1, which features an antimicrobial Corning Gorilla Glass display. Like the Swift 1, the Spin 1 can also be configured with either a Pentium or Celeron processor. (Just as with the Swift 1, Acer didn't disclose which generation of CPUs these would be. Again, we're assuming Skylake.)
The Acer Spin 7, Spin 5 and Spin 3 will be available in October, whereas the Spin 1 come in December.
|Header Cell - Column 0||Acer Spin 7||Acer Spin 5||Acer Spin 3||Acer Spin 1|
|Screen||14” FHD IPS display with Corning Gorilla Glass 4 and 10-point touch||13.3” FHD (1920x1080) IPS with 10-pointtouch||15.6” FHD (1920x1080) IPS15.6” HD (1366x768) with 10-point touch||1.6” FHD (1920x1080) IPS11.6” HD (1366x768) with Antimicrobial Corning Gorilla Glass|
|Processor||7th Generation Intel Core i7||7th Intel Core i5/i3||6th Intel Core i7/i5/i3, Intel Pentium or Intel Celeron||Intel Pentium or Intel Celeron|
|Memory||8 GB of onboard LPDDR3 memory||Up to 16 GB of DDR4 memory||Up to 12 GB of DDR4 memory||Up to 8 GB of DDR3L memory|
|Graphics||Intel HD Graphics 615||Intel HD Graphics 520||Intel HD Graphics 520 / 510||Intel HD Graphics|
|Storage||SSD: 256 GB||SSD: Up to 512 GB||SSD: Up to 512 GBHDD: Up to 1TB||HDD: Up to 1 TBeMMC: Up to 64 GB|
|Dimensions||324.6 x 229.6 x 10.98 mm (WxDxH)||328.8 x 228.5 x 19.7 mm (WxDxH)||381.5 x 250.9 x 22.5 mm (WxDxH)||298 x 210 x 20.3 mm (WxDxH)|
|Weight||1.2 kg||1.6 kg||2.15 kg||1.5 kg|
|Battery Life||Up to 8 hours||Up to 10 hours||Up to 9 hours||Up to 9 hours|
|Camera||HD webcam with HDR support||HD webcam with HDR support||HD webcam with HDR support||HD webcam|
A Convertible Chromebook With Google Play Support: Acer Chromebook R 13
Chrome-savvy customers who are also looking for some convertible action ought to consider the Chromebook R 13, the industry’s first convertible Chromebook. The Chromebook R 13 is powered by the MediaTek M8173C Core Pilot and has a battery life of up to 12 hours. You can prop it up at multiple angles and use its 13.3 inch IPS touch screen just as you would with a Windows-based convertible laptop.
Most notably, the Chromebook R 13 will support Android apps from Google’s Play Store. Ever since Play Store support for Chrome OS was announced, we've been expecting new Chromebooks to launch with the new capability. Suddenly having access to the vast app catalog available on Android will make Chromebooks even more attractive than they already are to budget-conscious consumers and school systems.
The Acer Chromebook R 13 will be available this October for $399.
|Header Cell - Column 0||Acer Chromebook R 13|
|Screen||13.3” FHD IPS display|
|Processor||MediaTek M8173C Core Pilot quad-core processor|
|Memory||4 GB of onboard LPDDR3 memory|
|Graphics||Imagination PowerVR GX6250 GPU|
|Storage||eMMC: Up to 64 GB|
|Dimensions||326 x 228 x 15.5 mm (WxDxH)|
|Battery Life||Up to 12 hours|
|Camera||HD FOV webcam with HDR|
bye bye to microsoft market share on notebooks