Acer officials in a statement denied the remarks of an Acer salesperson, who reportedly said that its netbooks would be phased out in favor of tablets.
Acer officials are denying that they plan to phase out the company's netbook
lines as Acer begins to also focus on the tablet market. Additionally, the
officials said in a statement that, for the moment, tablets "based on
[Intel's] Sandy Bridge
are not yet foreseen."
sales manager Lu Bing-hsian, Computer World
reported Jan. 17 that tablets would
eventually replace the lightweight mobile netbooks that Acer helped to make a
PC market phenomenon.
The site quoted Lu as saying, "They are aimed at phasing out netbooks.
That's the direction of the market."
Computer World additionally reported that Acer has 7- and 10-inch tablet
models planned, both of which will run Google's Android operating system and
Intel's new line of Sandy Bridge
processors. The new processors, which were released earlier this year at the
2011 Consumer Electronics Show and offer integrated CPU and graphics
capabilities, would theoretically enable the tablets to outperform the slew of
recently introduced tablets running Nvidia's Tegra 2 chips.
"Acer Inc. confirms that the company will not phase out netbooks in
favor of tablets," Acer said in its Jan. 19 statement.
The company went on to explain that mobility has always been in Acer's DNA
and will find a "new form of expression" in the range of tablets it
plans to offer-a 7-inch Android tablet, a 10.1-inch Android tablet and a
10.1-inch Windows tablet. None of these will run the Sandy
Bridge processors, Acer said.
"Acer recognizes that the computer market is changing," the
statement continued. "This means the range of devices available to users
is getting wider and tablets are just another piece of the mosaic. Therefore,
they will find their space next to netbooks and notebooks."
During the fourth quarter of 2010, Acer was the second- or
third-best-performing PC vendor, depending on whom you asked
. Gartner reported Jan.
12 that Acer took the No. 2 spot during the quarter, shipping 11.9 million
units and claiming 12.7 percent market share, behind Hewlett-Packard's 18.8
percent. In a preliminary estimate released the same day, IDC
put Acer in third place, on shipments of 9.8 million units and 10.6 percent
market share, and estimated Dell to be in second place, with shipments of 11.1
million units for 12.1 percent market share.
In the United States,
Gartner ranked Acer third, behind HP and Dell, respectively, while IDC
ranked it in fourth position, behind HP, Dell and Toshiba, respectively.
Both firms, however, found PC sales to be weak. Laptops continue to vie for
consumer attention-and dollars-with growing numbers of media tablets. Gartner
analyst Mikako Kitagawa wrote that while the tablets don't compete directly
with PCs, they "undoubtedly intensified" the competition for consumer
Netbooks, or "mininotebooks," as Gartner calls them, "were
hit the most by the success of media tablets," wrote Kitagawa.
IDC reiterated the finding, reporting
that "after a strong run through 2009, [Acer] was affected by lackluster
sales of Mini Notebook PCs, and slowing consumer demand across many markets."
Acer, introducing the three planned tablets
2010, said all will feature WiFi and 3G connectivity. The Android tablets were
said to be scheduled for an April release, while the Windows 7 model will
arrive in February.