Leaks of a new Acer tablet to MiniMachines.net may have revealed the first of new line-up of Windows devices meant to be even more portable than the smallest 10.1” inch devices the operating system ships on today.
The photo depicts a new Acer 8” inch tablet with a front-facing camera at the top and a Windows button on the bottom. The entire tablet is mated with a keyboard dock that bears a striking resemblance to the rest of the device, meaning it could come included with the Acer Iconia W3 or as an aftermarket accessory for those who need to boost their productivity.
According to the same outlet who received the pictures, the Acer Iconia W3 will ship with a 1.8GHz dual-core Atom z2760 processor. If that’s true, this device would be carry a version of Windows 8, not Windows RT. That’s important since, Windows 8 devices can run the full gamut of Windows applications inside the desktop. Currently, Windows RT users are restricted to only buying applications inside the Windows Store.
In addition to the camera in the leaked photo, there’s also a rear-facing camera in other photos, but those have since been pulled by Minimachines at the behest of Acer’s Legal Team.
A smaller form factor for Windows devices isn’t something that we haven’t been expecting entirely. Recent information from both Microsoft and hardware partners have hinted at smaller and cheaper form factors designed to put pressure on the pricing of traditional Windows devices. Reports from The Verge indicated that Microsoft was attempting to lower the cost of licensing its operating system to hardware makers in preparation for launch cheaper devices.
Processor making Intel has also been attempting to push smaller and lighter form factors designed to hit lower price points. According to the company, its upcoming ATOM processors –like the one the Acer Iconia W3 is rumored to have, will help push the prices of devices running Windows 8 to as low as $200. That would be a far cry from the $500-$600 price range they begin at today.