Acer's flagship hybrid line is getting bigger, sharper and more powerful. Arriving in early 2015, the new Aspire Switch 12 sports a 12.5-inch display, a beefed-up processor and an improved design that allows for more use modes than its predecessors. If the rumors of a 12.2-inch iPad Pro hold up, Acer's device will go head to head with Apple's next big thing.
Like the latest Switch 10 and Switch 11 hybrids, the Switch 12's 12.5-inch Gorilla Glass screen sports a full HD resolution at 1920 x 1080. The notebook retains the detachable, magnetic keyboard of its little brothers, but is made even more versatile by a new rear kickstand that allows the display to stand up completely on its own. This gives the Switch 12 a total of five modes: notebook, tablet, display, tent and desktop, the latter of which has you use the keyboard wirelessly.
The latest iPad Pro rumors point to a 12.2-inch display and additional speaker for better sound. It's also said to be as thin as the iPhone. But the biggest changes could come to iOS, which has lagged behind Windows and Samsung's TouchWiz software in terms of multitasking.
Unlike the silver finish found on the Switch 10 and 11, the Switch 12 sports a black coat of paint around its keyboard and display. The Switch 12's full-size keyboard features a pointing stick for power users, and the notebook supports Acer's Active Pen for drawing or jotting down notes.
The Switch 12 is powered by Intel's new Core M processor, which complements the notebook's fanless design by reducing power consumption. Input-wise, the laptop packs microUSB 3.0 and microHDMI ports.
Acer plans to ship 60GB and 120GB SSD configurations of the Aspire Switch 12 in early 2015, though no pricing has been announced yet. We've been impressed with the Switch series so far, so we look forward to getting our hands on the new 12-incher for our full review.