Acer started with an interesting idea to build the Iconia, its latest concept laptop; what would it feel to have two touchscreen displays without any proper keyboard and with a novelty user interface.
The answer, we fear, will leave reviewers and buyers alike confused for all the wrong reasons and dent Acer's attempts to be seen as a genuine innovator by its peers.
The Iconia is inspired by Microsoft's Courier, a tablet / ebook reader project that was cancelled at the beginning of the year by the company and which came with two touchscreen displays as well.
Whereas the Courier was supposed to be thin and light, the Iconia is big and heavy; it measures 347x249x32mm and weighs a whopping 2.8Kg. Put it otherwise, the Iconia is slightly larger and wider than the newest 13-inch Macbook air but is twice as thick and heavy.
Having to power two 14-inch screens with a processor means that battery life is pushed down to only three hours and that's according to Acer, which means that real life battery life might be less than that. Apple managed to squeeze a 50Whr battery in the Macbook Air while Acer could only get a 44Whr model in the Iconia.
That's not all, the Iconia will be sold for a whopping £1500 we're told; that's more than THREE TIMES what you can expect to pay for a bog standard Acer Aspire laptop with a Core i5 processor (£480.33 at Techdepot); so the extra capacitive screens come in at more than £1000.
For that price you would also expect to have a top of the range dedicated graphics card but unfortunately, you will have to rely on the built-in graphics module that comes with Intel's Core I-series processors called Intel GMA HD, one which comes with a mere 128MB memory and supports only DirectX10.