Reviews are rolling in of the Acer Iconia W510 hybrid Windows 8 laptop, and the Intel Atom Z2760 Clovertrail processor appears to be managing to run Windows 8 pretty well.
Engadget reviewed the device, and found their biggest complaint to be the build quality of the hinge in the dock stand, which they found wobbly, and issue shared by the Verge, who found it wobbly and stiff at the same time.
The found the gorilla-glass ensconced 1,366 x 768 display to be pretty good, with good viewing angles, and though they would not commit to commenting on battery life and performance, due to the pre-production drivers, still found the device in general fast and responsive, despite only having 2GB of RAM.
Having met with Acer’s product team in person (and having read its executives quoted in the press), it’s obvious the company is eager to shed its reputation for cheap products and be taken more seriously as an OEM capable of building premium PCs. You can even see glimmers of that in the Iconia W510, with its lovely IPS display and bundled accessories. Ultimately, though, the W510 does a disservice to Acer: with a chintzy build, impotent touchpad and a cramped, netbook-like keyboard, it confirms whatever pre-conceived notions shoppers may have about the brand. And with so many Windows 8 hybrids on the way, including one from Microsoft itself, Acer can’t afford to have its products get lost in the mix.
If there’s one silver lining, it’s this: the W510 performs well. The Clover Trail-based Atom processor inside makes for some zippy performance in Windows 8, and that nine-hour battery is also promising. We’ll be back with a full review in which we plan to put this guy through its paces, and we’ll be curious to see how it fares against similarly priced hybrids offering comparable specs. For all we know, the W510 will end up being exceptionally fast and longevous for its class. But you’d have to get past its homely exterior to appreciate it.
The Verge notes:
The W510 will be out November 9th, for $499.99 for 32GB of internal storage or $599.99 for 64GB. Neither model comes with the keyboard dock, though, and to get the whole kit you’ll have to shell out $749.99 — that gets you the 64GB model plus the dock.
There are going to be plenty of devices in the coming weeks that look a lot like the Acer Iconia W510. Whether or not the W510 is the best in its class remains to be seen — for one thing, I’m itching for a slightly larger device like the Asus Transformer Book. But using the W510 has made one thing abundantly clear: the convertible, laptop / tablet hybrid is a perfect fit for Windows 8, and Windows 8 makes this form factor sing in a way Android and other operating systems just can’t. We’ll be spending time with many other devices like it, but the W510 has certainly whet our appetite for more Windows 8.
So no matter the hardware, the OS is setting up the category to be a winner.