Three devices, three options, Acer has you covered

Aspire S13, Spin 7 and Switch Alpha 12 - Our review

Laptops, Tablets, Convertibles, twistable, changeable, computing devices these days are very different to a few years ago let alone five or ten years ago.   We’ve been test driving a few from Acer which fit in some way across every single category of device.

The three devices we have for you are the Asipre S13 – a stunningly designed laptop we first saw when it was launched in New York.  The Switch Alpha 12, likewise, launched in New York but finally here in Australia and a new one to the team – the Spin 7.

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Each could be your primary PC, each could handle any task thrown at them thanks to Intel Core processors up to i7 available in all models.

So, which would be your pick?

Aspire S13: RRP $1,899

Available in anything from Intel Core i3 right up to two options for Core i7, this is probably Acer’s flagship laptop for the everyday.  It’s not as thin or fancy as the Spin 7, but it does everything you’d want, plus is rather stylish too.  A nice front finish that’s different to the bland of regular laptops.

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At just 1.3kg you won’t be complaining about the weight, and you won’t have an issue with the Full HD 13.3 inch display.  These days I would like to see a bit more in terms of resolution, but I guess slowly but surely we’ll get there.

Performance was snappy but of course that’s up to you with six Intel Core chip options.

I’d recommend an Intel Core i5 at the very least, unless this is really an email and Facebook machine for you – though if that’s the case, there’s other options on this very page worth considering.

Switch Alpha 12: $1,390 (128GB)

Think Surface, Think Tablet.  Microsoft – you’ve got to hand it to them – took the Windows Operating system which was essentially designed for tablets, and made it work both in a user interface sense and in terms of tablet design.

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With that market established and growing, Acer’s iteration is the Switch Alpha.

Available in Core i3, i5 and i6, with a starting price of under $1,400 it’s a great full productivity tablet option.

The keyboard attachment comes with the Switch Alpha so no additional expense required, and a stylus will also work on the screen.

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My only complaint was the wire-like kick-stand.  I get that a flat bit of metal would be copy-catting Microsoft, but this little flimsy frame works, but is very hard to just quickly snap out and use.  And it’s certainly only great on a dedicated surface like a table – not great on the lap for long periods.

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This is the ultimate device for those working on the go more often than not, and for those who need a new computer but don’t need the expense of a big screen and likely don’t need the power of a full desktop or laptop solution.

Acer Spin 7: $1,998

Ok, so this is where Acer kinda step up their game a bit.  I’d have to say Lenovo are the top of the pops for design innovation and they’ve been out there alone essentially.  But things are really changing.

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The Spin 7 is a fold back, flip around, tablet, tent, laptop device.

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It’s thin, light and ultra-modern, as indicated by the USB-C ports.  That’s right – USB-C.  This guy is a vision to the future from Acer and that’s a bloody good thing.

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Performance is outstanding with the 14 inch display bringing the Intel Core i7 chip to life.

It’s hard to fault really.  Not cheap, but this one is for the PC fan, those sometimes lured across to the idea of a MacBook but not willing or eager to switch.  If Microsoft can keep Windows 10 on its game and Acer can pump out devices like this – we’ve got a good bit of competition ahead in portable computers.

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As for me, I’ll take the Spin 7 thanks.  Pretty please?

 

 

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Trev produces two of the most popular technology podcasts in Australia, Your Tech Life and Two Blokes Talking Tech. He hosts a nightly radio show on Talking Lifestyle, 8pm Monday to Friday in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, appears on over 50 radio stations across Australia weekly, and is the Tech Expert on Channel 9’s Today Show and A Current Affair. Father of three, he is often found down in his Man Cave. Like this post? Buy Trev a drink!
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