TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Acer's switching things up, when it comes to the company's line of lightweight 2-in-1s. Here at Computex, the company announced the launch of its Aspire Switch 11 V hybrid, which uses a new hinge mechanism to make snapping the screen on and off of the keyboard easier than on prior models. A new, low-power processor promises strong battery life, another reason the Aspire Switch 11 V seems like a big improvement over the original Aspire Switch 11 and Switch 10.
During a brief hands-on, we easily pulled the display off of the keyboard to enter tablet mode. When we went to reattach it, we had no trouble positioning it over the hinge and popping it into place. For comparison's sake, we tried reattaching the screen to the keyboard on an Aspire Switch 10 with the old hinge design and had to try three times before getting it into place.
When we reviewed the original Acer Aspire Switch 11, we complained about its mediocre battery life of 6 hours and 5 minutes, which is more than 2 hours below the ultraportable notebook category average. However, the 11 V uses a power-efficient Intel Core M CPU, which should allow it to get the 8 hours of battery life Acer touts.
In handling the Aspire Switch 11 V, we were particularly impressed with its rich 1920 x 1080-pixel display, which thanks to IPS technology and zero air gap, provided very vibrant, deep colors on the Windows 8 Start Menu and desktop. The 2-in-1's attractive rear lid has a metallic criss-cross pattern on it for a dose of style. Snappy keys and a speedy 128GB SSD complete this impressive package.
Acer has yet to announce U.S. pricing or availability for the Acer Aspire Switch 11 V. We look forward to putting the 2-in-1 through its paces when it gets closer to launch.