Acer announces 8.1” Windows tablet – but will desktop Windows work in this format?

Acer has announced an 8.1″ Windows tablet, the Iconia W3:

  • Intel Atom 1.8Ghz dual-core Z2760 CPU
  • 8 hr battery life
  • 1280 x 800 screen
  • 2GB RAM
  • Front and rear 2 MP cameras
  • Micro HDMI
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • GPS
  • 32 or 64GB storage
  • Micro SD
  • Bundles Office 2013 Home and Student
  • Optional keyboard $79.99
  • $379.99, available this month

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Anything wrong with this picture? Certainly it could be handy for using Windows on the go, being more compact than a Surface (though how much more, if you include the keyboard?) and much cheaper than Surface Pro.

There are some snags though. This device runs full Windows 8 rather than Windows RT, the ARM version, so you can run all your desktop apps; but many will be no fun to use on an 8.0″ screen, or without keyboard and mouse. The Modern – that is, Metro-style – apps should be fine, but the Windows 8 app ecosystem is still weak so you may struggle to get by on those. There is Office – and it is smart of Acer to bundle Home and Student – but will you be squinting to use it on such a small screen?

My hunch is that Windows will not sing on small tablets until there is a version of Office for the Modern UI.

Related posts:

  1. Windows 8 desktop user tip: learn mouse-top-left-drag-down
  2. The Surface RT desktop: more here than I had expected
  3. Asus announces combined smartphone and tablet – the Padfone
  4. Imperfect Samsung Slate 7 tablet shows challenge facing Windows 8
  5. The one thing missing from Windows 8 tablets announced so far: simplicity

One thought on “Acer announces 8.1” Windows tablet – but will desktop Windows work in this format?

  1. niclas lindgren

    The thing is, you loose nothing by choosing the full win 8 on an Intel device(you loose bundled office, but it is an non metro office anyway), on the up side the user can Run various corporate van softwares needed och you can use it with hdmi out to run legacy software for presentations etc

    I have an Asus vivotab with more or less the same specs but bigger screen, very useful device because I can so all corporate stuff on it, run legacy software such as Cygwin and connect legacy peripherals such as usb to rs232 for diagnosing things.

    The rt is a great device for consuming stuff the non rt can still do all that but also serve you needs if you need to get off track.

    User will try to stay in metro anyway, it will just feel natural, but they won’t be let down when they need to so something they did yesterday.

    Foe an Intel device this is a no brainer choice.

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