Feeds

Acer: Android netbook coming in Q3

Rumours of Windows' death very greatly exaggerated

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Acer will indeed make and sell an Android-based netbook, a company executive has said. We're just unconvinced it'll be any more successful than its Linux netbooks.

The confirmation came from Acer's head of IT products, Jim Wong, by way of Bloomberg. Wong said the Android netbook will debut in Q3, the newsagency reports.

We can't wait to see it and try it out. It might even replace our original Aspire One netbook. But we're sceptical the machine's arrival will suddenly replace Windows.

The AA1 is why. When it was released it was made available with a choice of Linux or Windows XP. Every model Acer has introduced since then has been Windows XP only, and the Microsoft OS is by wide margin the more commonplace operating system on netbooks from other vendors.

To be fair, netbook versions of Linux have primarily been unusual distros with easy-access UIs rather than standard desktops, but even netbook makers who've offered full versions of Ubuntu or SuSE haven't exactly established them at the forefront of their line-ups.

Netbooks, unlike smartphones - where Android is going to be big - have a form-factor that steers owners into usage patterns that favour Windows. They look like laptops, and lots of punters want to do laptop things on them. For most of those people, that means running software they already run on a Windows laptop or desktop.

Like it or not, the majority of netbook buyers want the familiarity and access to a broad range of applications that Windows brings. Reg readers may be different, but we're not the target audience. All the evidence suggests consumers favour Windows.

Android isn't going to persuade them otherwise, any more than Linux did.

Asus, like Acer, has a prototype netbook running Android, this time on a Qualcomm Snapdragon ARM processor. But the company has said this is just a proof of concept machine, not an indication that it too is about to launch Android-based systems.

We can certainly see companies like Acer releasing Android netbooks to test the level of demand, but we're not convinced they're going to be hugely successful unless they manage to offer a battery life well in excess of what Atom-based XP machines offer today.

But that demand will come in spite of Android, not because of it. Ditto if it sells by the bucketload because it's cheap, which was why the original 7in, Linux-only Eee PC did so well. ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Xperia Z3: Crikey, Sony – ANOTHER flagship phondleslab?
The Fourth Amendment... and it IS better
Microsoft to enter the STRUGGLE of the HUMAN WRIST
It's not just a thumb war, it's total digit war
Tim Cook: The classic iPod HAD to DIE, and this is WHY
Apple, er, couldn’t get the parts for HDD models
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Sporty in all but name: Peugeot 308 e-THP 110
Car of the Year? Arguably. Engine of the Year? Indubitably
Caterham Seven 160 review: The Raspberry Pi of motoring
Back to driving's basics with a joyously legal high
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.