Monday, March 28, 2011

Acer Iconia: Redefining The Power of Touch

I'm impressed! Last week, I saw two of the newest gadgets to hit Philippines shores. One of these is what Acer calls the Touchbook. The first time I saw it, I first thought of a blown up Nintendo DS that is way cooler.

The Acer Iconica features not one, but two 14-inch touch screen displays with multi-touch, high-definition and high-brightness 1366 x 768 resolution that support up to 10-finger touch. These LCD screens are made of tempered glass which are ultra-thin yet extremely durable. The scratch- and fingerprint-resistant face is made by Corning, a renowned manufacturer of tough glasses. The touch-screens are also mercury-free which make them totally environment-friendly.

For a more life-like video chatting experience, the Iconia's video support is handled by Intel HD Graphics with 128MB of dedicated system memory that supports Microsoft DirectX 10 plus the Acer CrystalEye webcam that has a 1280 x 1024 resolution to up the ante of face-to-face communication over the internet.

The Iconia also has the Acer Ring Control Interface which fast tracks the launching of Acer's touch applications and handy built-in features and controls. I like how users can customize gestures. For example, the person who demoed the product programmed the Iconia to recognize a straight horizontal line as a signal to open his Yahoo Messenger. It would be cool to draw a star on the screen to launch my favorite website or an X to lock other users (a.k.a. my kids :p) out.

There's also the Virtual Keyboard that features adaptive typing intelligence and predictive text input (like a cell phone!) that gives a real keyboard experience.

Here are other specs I'm sure techies would love to know with regards to the Iconia's computing powers: an Intel Core i5-480M processor, Mobile Intel HM55 Express Chipset, and 2x2GB DDRIII memory plus a 640GB hard drive.

But, there's more! Aside from the dual screen Touchbook, there's also the Acer Iconia Tab W500, an ultra-portable and touch-optimized Windows-based tablet that promotes simplicity, foregoing the need for format conversion for its various applications. Its hybrid design offers the best of worlds because of its high-definition multi-touch tablet portability combined with the full productivity features of a standard notebook via its dockable keyboard.

As to its specs, the Iconia Tab has an AMD C-Series C-50 processor, an AMD A50M Fusion Controller Hub chipset and up to 2GB DDR3 memory chip with a 32GB SDD capacity. The LED-backlit TFT LCD screen measures 10.1 inches with hi-def 1280 x 800 resolution which supports finger touch and image auto rotation. The Iconia tab also has a Radeon HD 6250 graphics card with 256MB dedicated system memory as well as the multi-touch Acer Ring Control Interface, touch optimization interface, and the Device Control console.

For more info, please read the press release here.
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