When Acer unveiled its first 2013 Chromebook, the $250 C720-2800, it was hard to imagine things could get any cheaper than that with similar specs. And yet the Taiwanese have just outdone themselves, taking the wraps off the $200 C720-2848.
Like its sibling, the new C720 Chromebook is built on Intel’s sizzling hot Haswell micro-architecture, so it packs decent punch… all things considered, as well as making the most of an otherwise lackluster battery.
Mind you though, we’re not looking at a laptop powered by an Intel processor part of the Core i family, but instead a more modest Celeron clocked at 1.4 GHz. Also, and this is important, the C720-2848 comes with a humble 2 GB RAM, unlike the C720-2800, which sports double the memory.
Why is that so important? Because it’s essentially the only thing setting the two Acer Chromebooks apart. Well, that and pricing. In every other aspect, from design to storage, graphics, connectivity and screen size and resolution, it’s like looking at two peas in a pod.
That’s to say the “new” Chrome OS-running notebook, as the “old” one, comes with an 11.6-inch anti-glare panel boasting 1,366 x 768 pixels resolution, 16 GB SSD, integrated Intel HD GPU, Wi-Fi, HDMI, Bluetooth 4.0, USB 2.0 and 3.0, 2.8 pounds weight and 0.75 inches waistline.
The external appearance of Acer’s latest 11-incher is quite clearly not its strongest suit (the words “plasticky”, “shallow” and “cheap” come to mind), but on the whole you have to be really nitpicky to complain about the value for money here.
For crying out loud, 200 bucks used to buy a Walkman back in the day and now you can score a computing machine making use of a relatively fresh SoC and promising to last up to 8.5 hours between charges.
At this time, the Acer C720-2848 can’t be bought anywhere, with Amazon the sole retailer to put up a listing. The seller, as well as Best Buy and Google directly, are expected to kick shipping into gear by the end of the month. It’s as if Big G and Acer are trying to cancel Black Friday, huh?