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Thursday, October 10, 2013
Acer Launches $250 C720 Chromebook
Acer's latest 11.6-inch (1366 x 768 pixels) C720 Chromebook is based on an Intel Haswell CPU and will sell for US$249.99, which is the lowest price yet in the newest wave of laptops with Google's Chrome OS.
This third-generation Chromebook has a design that is 30 percent thinner than its predecessor, measuring only 0.75-inches thick. It also weighs only 2.76 pounds and for the first time, it features an anti-glare display.
The new Acer C720 Chromebook boots up in less than 7 seconds and resumes nearly instantly from sleep mode thanks to the fast Solid State Drive. The new Chromebook is powered by an Intel Celeron 2955U processor based on the Intel Haswell micro-architecture. The battery keeps users going for up to 8.5 hours. Acer's latest Chromebook also supports up to 4 GB of DDR3L memory and quickly connects to hotspots and wireless networks via 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi.
Multiple layers of security features including data encryption and verified boot defend the Acer C720 Chromebook against online threats, malware and viruses. IT administrators can also manage the Chromebooks remotely.
Users can have separate accounts to ensure their project, Gmail and other information is kept safe if the Chromebook is lost, stolen, or lent to a friend. Also, Acer is offering up to 100 GB of free Google Drive storage for the first two years after purchase. Users can also access files offline, and even open and edit MS Office documents as well as Google Documents. Finally, the Acer C720 Chromebooks have a Kensington lock to secure them to a classroom or mobile cart.
The new Acer C720 still includes a full-sized keyboard, an integrated HD webcam, a microphone, a dual speaker design, a USB 3.0 port as well as a USB 2.0 port. It also has an HDMI port and an SD card reader.
The first model in the Acer C720 Series, the C720-2800, is available for pre-order now at Amazon.com and BestBuy.com with 4 GB of memory and a 16GB SSD at a manufacturer's suggested retail price of only $249.99 in the United States. It will also be available this month at the Acer Store.
The Acer C720 comes with a standard one-year parts and labor warranty, which can be extended to three years with the Acer Advantage service.
A C720 competitor will be Hewlett-Packard and Google's Chromebook 11, which provides 6.5 hours of battery and is priced at $279. The Chromebook 11 was announced this week and runs on an ARM-based Samsung Exynos processor.
The $249.99 price is a hike from C720's predecessor, the C710, which started selling earlier this year and is now priced starting at $199.
HP and Toshiba also plan to launch Chromebooks with Intel's Celeron processors.