Now it’s official. At the Computex trade show in Taipei today, Acer announced the first Windows 8-based mini-tablet, the Iconia W3. But rather than wait for Windows 8.1, which will improve the experience on smaller devices, the W3 is shipping this month.
Acer says the device will cost $380 for a version with 32 GB of internal storage. (A 64 GB version will also be offered.) An optional keyboard, which is notably wider than the tablet, will cost $80. And a case will set you back $35.
According to Acer, the W3 is powered by a current-generation Atom Z2760 processor that delivers 8 hours of battery life and 2 GB of RAM. It weighs just 1.19 pounds and is .45 inches thin. It can (sort of) be used with a single hand, little a (very) large smart phone. The device includes a 1280 x 800 LED display, 802.11 b/g/n wireless and Bluetooth 4.0 networking, front and rear facing 2 megapixel webcams, and micro-HDMI and micro-USB ports.
While the Acer Iconia W3 is the first Windows 8 mini-tablet, it won’t be the last: Several other similar devices will appear in 2013, including an 8-inch Microsoft Surface design.