Acer Hopes Inexpensive Laptops Will Win SMBs

By: Ann All

Earlier this year, Acer's chairman made some pretty big predictions about the potential growthof his company's business — so big (a possible increase in sales of 70 percent) that it seemed like wishful thinking.

Yet his wishes have been coming true. The Taiwanese manufacturer overtook rival Dell to become the No. 2 seller of PCs in the world in 2007's third quarter. Analysts are expecting even bigger numbers for Acer in the final quarter following its $710 million acquisition of Gateway.

Acer's gains have largely been generated by its consumer business, but it will launch a renewed effort at winning the business of North American SMBs in the coming year.

A key product is its Extensa 4620 laptop, which comes with either an Intel Core 2 Duo or a Pentium dual-core processor, reports eWEEK. The machines are priced at $799 or $699, respectively.

Not surprisingly, considering the highly public dissingthat Acer Chairman J.T. Wang gave to Vista this summer, the Extensa laptops will come outfitted with Windows XP?- though the machines will be capable of running Vista.

To really win the loyalty of SMBs, Acer will also need to offer strong support and related servicesScience Articles, a strategy already practiced by competitors HP and Lenovo.

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