Acer Enters Wearable Arena with Smart Band
The Liquid Leap will be paired with the Liquid Jade smartphone, and the two will play an important role in Acer's BYOC strategy.Acer is getting into the increasingly competitive wearable device market with the introduction of the Liquid Leap, a smartwatch product that tracks a user's fitness data and is linked to the vendor's new Liquid Jade smartphone. The Liquid Leap sports a 1-inch display that not only tracks such data as the number of steps users take, the calories they burn and their sleep cycles, but also can notify users to calls and SMS text messages coming into the Liquid Jade smartphone. The new Liquid Leap smart band and Liquid Jade smartphone also will play a role in Acer's build your own cloud (BYOC) strategy, where users will be able to build personal clouds on their own devices, integrating their PC and mobile devices for accessing data, such as music and photos. The smartphone will be integrated with other PCs from Acer to enable access to data anytime and anywhere, according to company officials. The wearable device space is becoming a growing focus for a range of tech vendors, from component makers like Intel and Qualcomm to others like Google and Samsung. Wearable devices will play a large role in the burgeoning Internet of things (IoT) market, and IDC analysts expect the space to grow rapidly in the coming years. They are forecasting shipments of wearable devices in 2014 to triple last year's numbers—to more than 19 million units—and hit 111.9 million units in 2018.
Reports surfaced earlier this year that Acer, which has seen its fortunes fall as the global PC market contracted over the past couple of years, was planning to get into the wearable device space in 2014. Acer, at one point the world's second-largest PC vendor based on the strengths of its netbook business, also has been hobbled by the rise of mobile devices, particularly tablets and smartphones from Apple and vendors leveraging Google's Android operating system.