It is interesting to analyse or at least comment on the decision(s) that pushed Acer to stick to Intel for its Chromebook while Samsung instead opted to embrace ARM, thereby leaving Chrome OS to run on two different hardware platforms.
The C7 is based on an existing Acer Aspire product and the fact that the Taiwanese company opted to equip it with a massive 320GB hard drive leaves us to believe that the company may well have recycled an existing product range simply swapping the commercial Windows OS for Chrome OS as well as modifying the keyboard layout.
That’s not to say that the Acer C7 is a bad product. It runs on an Intel Celeron 847 processor which is essentially a cut down Core i3 processor. There’s 2GB of RAM, an 11.6in 1,366 x 768 pixels display, an Ethernet port, Wi-Fi, a HD webcam, three USB 2.0 ports and a HDMI one plus that 320GB hard disk drive.
Compared to the Samsung Chromebook though, the C7 has a lower battery life (4 hours vs. 6.5 hours), is thicker and heavier (at 25mm and 1.4Kg respectively). Both Chromebooks also come with 100GB cloud storage courtesy of Google.
In most head-to-head configurations (according to this comparison from Gigaom), the Acer Chromebook will beat the ARM-based Samsung model while costing marginally less than the latter. But one has to wonder whether Acer’s allegiance to Intel is only temporary and could vanish with Chromebook v3 (if it ever happens).
As for the Google TV, we expect Chromebooks to migrate entirely to ARM by the next iteration, a move that will only accentuate the grip of the British company on the Android device market.