Saturday, 10 December 2016

Review: Acer’s attempt at high-quality Ultrabook isn’t quite good enough

Specs at a glance: Acer Swift 7
Screen 13.3-inch 1920x1080 (166 PPI) IPS display (non-touch)
OS Windows 10 Home (64-bit)
CPU Dual-core 1.2GHz (3.2GHz Turbo) Intel Core i5-7Y54
GPU Intel HD Graphics 615
Networking 867Mbps 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.0
Ports 2x USB-C, headphone jack
Size 12.8" x 9.0" x 0.40" (325.1 x 228.6 x 10.2mm)
Weight 2.48 pounds (1.12kg)
Battery 78Wh
Warranty One year
Starting price $1,099.99
Other perks 720p webcam, lock slot

You can split today’s mainstream laptop market into four segments, more-or-less. The sub-$400 part of the market is where lots and lots of low-end, low-quality laptops live. There’s a midmarket segment that exists somewhere between $500 and $800, in which you can actually find some pretty solid computers if you’re willing to compromise on a handful of things. The $1,500-and-up super-premium market is mostly the purview of high-end Ultrabook configurations and halo devices like the Surface Book and MacBook Pro. And then there’s that $800-$1,200 spot where most of the PC OEMs’ “premium” efforts live.

Two or three years ago, it was enough to find the rare laptop with a good IPS screen, a decent chiclet keyboard, acceptable battery life, and a trackpad that didn’t make you want to murder someone. That describes most of 2012, 2013, and 2014’s best Ultrabooks—the ThinkPad X1 Carbon, the Toshiba Kirabook, early Asus Zenbook Primes, the previous-generation Dell XPS 12 and XPS 13, and Acer’s Aspire S7 were all essentially competent Ultrabooks without particularly groundbreaking designs or extraneous frills.

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from Review: Acer’s attempt at high-quality Ultrabook isn’t quite good enough

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