Acer unveils Android-based iPad rivals: Where's Dell?

Despite Apple's lead, Android tablets keep in coming

The Acer Iconia A500 Android tablet

The Acer Iconia A500 Android tablet

The same day Dell made international news for criticising the iPad by proclaiming it to be unsuitable for Enteprise use, computer giant Acer has quietly announced its own line-up of tablet PCs that run either Android or Windows.

In an interview with CIO, Dell’s global head of marketing for large enterprises and public organisations, Andy Lark, said the despite the iPad’s popularity it would ultimately fail in the enterprise.

Dell might not have an alternative to the iPad yet, but other PC and phone makers like Acer are pushing ahead with Android tablets anyway.

In February Dell announced it will bring a 10-inch Windows 7 tablet to Australia later this year aimed at the business market.

Acer’s Iconia range of mobile computers includes two Android tablet PCs and two netbooks, one with a dual touch screen.

The Iconia A500 is 10.1-inch multi-touch Android tablet and the Iconia A100 is a 7-inch Android tablet. Both run Android 3.0 “Honeycomb” and support Adobe Flash.

Acer’s tablet PCs are among the first on the local market to run Honeycomb, which is designed for larger screens, unlike tablets with the Android 2 series designed for smartphones.

Inside the A500 is a dual core Nvidia Tegra 2 and connectivity is either Wi-Fi only or Wi-Fi and 3G. It has a HDMI port for 1080p video out.

Pricing starts at $579 and it will be available from major retails from mid-April.

The smaller A100 also has an Nvidia processor and a HDMI port. It starts at $499.

Acer Computer Australia’s general manager of product management Nigel Gore said the content consumers produce and their need to access it is what’s driving people to tablet devices.

In addition to the Android tablets, Acer has announced the Iconia W500 10.1-inch Windows tablet with dockable keyboard and the Iconia dual-screen, 14-inch Windows Touch-book.

The W500 runs the new AMD APU platform, has two 1.3MP cameras and will run for six hours on the battery. Connectivity is Wi-Fi and 3G.

Availability is slated for May at Harvey Norman for $899.

The Iconia dual-screen is a slightly different approach to portable computing with elements of tablet PCs and the traditional notebook.

Developed by Acer and Intel, Iconia dual-screen features two multi-touch displays where the content can “flow” across the screens.

At $2499 the dual-screen is in a different price bracket than a typical netbook or tablet, but it also features an Intel Core i5 processor. It will be available from Harvey Norman in April.

Follow Rodney Gedda on Twitter: @rodneygedda

Follow TechWorld Australia on Twitter: @Techworld_AU

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Tags AndroidacerDellWindows 7tablet PCsnetbooksHoneycomb

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