Acer Targets Schools and Students with New C7 Chromebook
Acer's newest Chromebook (C710-2055) comes with six hours of battery life, an Intel (NASDAQ: INTC ) Celeron 847 processor (2MB L3 cache, 1.10GHz, DDR3 1333 MHz) and 4GB of RAM -- all for $80 more than the original. For the sake of comparison, the previous model (C710-2847) comes with 2GB of RAM and a battery that runs dry after just four hours of use. It retails for $199.
The rest of the specs are nearly the same, so users of the original should not feel left out. Those who have yet to purchase a Chromebook may be intrigued by these new additions, however.
"Chromebooks are an ideal option for schools and districts that want to quickly implement a technology program that will significantly enhance student learning," Gregg Prendergast, Vice President of U.S. Commercial Sales at Acer America, said in a company release . "The Acer C7 Chromebook delivers the advanced capabilities that will help students excel in all areas of their education.
"In addition, the Acer C7 Chromebook is incredibly affordable as a stand-alone product, and even more affordable when schools consider the reduced total cost of ownership thanks to its manageability and security features."
Acer believes that teachers and parents will appreciate the automatic updates that come to the C7 courtesy of the Chrome OS. The company said that it will also appeal to IT administrators, who will "be pleased with both the affordable price of the Chromebook as well as the reduced cost of maintenance and support."
Chromebooks have access to Google's (NASDAQ: GOOG ) free educational apps, preventing users from having to shell out additional funds for new software.
Finally, Acer is touting the standard Google software that has become the lifeblood of every Chromebook, including Gmail and the Chrome Web browser. Acer said this makes it ideal for schools that plan to share Chromebooks with multiple students, either in the classroom or on a mobile cart. Since everything is stored in the cloud, users can log in and gain instant access to their files on Google Drive. When they're done, they can sign out and pass it on to the next student.
Amazon made a notable announcement when it revealed that it had become the official sponsor of the National PTA's new Family Reading Experience program. Apple has yet to respond with any new educational initiatives.
Meanwhile, Google and Microsoft are fighting a schoolyard battle of their own.
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