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Don't hurt yourself to the rush, Acer

While Samsung, HTC and Nokia are all making headway to release Windows Phone 8 devices, Acer has announced (once again) that they are planning a Windows Phone 8 device.

Acer president Jim Wong announced the company will launch six new smartphones in 2013, five Android phones and one Windows Phone. According to Wong,

"One of the six models will be a Windows Phone 8 device and the rest will run on Android platforms, with high-end models to be built with Qualcomm's dual-core CPUs and entry-level models using chipset solutions from MediaTek."

We've heard from various sources over time that Acer remains committed to both Windows Phone and Android, offering options to consumers with different needs. Not sure if with one out of six new phones being a Windows Phone is offering options.

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Over at Russian forum Acer-Club, a rumor has surfaced that Acer is working on a Windows Phone  8 device with sliding QWERTY keyboard.  Despite a dearth of evidence or details, the phone will reportedly be called the W11 and will be a lower-end offering. The post says that the W11 is slotted for an October 2012 release, with an official announcement coming in September. 

If true, the W11 join the Dell Venue Pro, the LG Quantum (aka, Optimus 7Q and C900) and the HTC Arrive (Sprint's only Windows Phone offering) as one of the few Windows Phone sliders out there.  Acer once manufactured the M900, a Windows Mobile phone with a sliding QWERTY keyboard, so it would fit their M.O and they currently have the Allegro on the market. 

The timing of an October release would also fall in line with the expected release of Windows Phone 8, commonly referred to as Apollo.  And although it's already been said, please be sure to take this as nothing more than a rumor at this point.  We will be sure to keep you posted as we catch word of more details. 

So what do you think?  With the slim and sleek Lumias and iPhones of the world, is there still a strong demand for QWERTY sliders?

Source: Acer-Club; Via: Neowin, WMPU

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Since the Acer Allegro showed itself to be a pretty solid phone for emerging markets and low-price point users at CES 2012, many have been wondering if Acer will continue manufacturing Windows Phone devices.  In an exclusive interview with Windows Phone Italy, Acer Italy's Business Manager, Augusto Zumbo, revealed that their relationship with Windows Phone is neither a full-blown romance, nor a cheap fling.  He confirmed that Acer will remain committed to both Windows Phone and Android, offering options to consumers with different needs.

Zumbo did not elaborate on the level of commitment and stopped short of giving details about future devices.  Windows Phone Italy got the impression that the Mango-powered Allegro would remain Acer's only Windows Phone handset through 2012, but that 2013 would see more Acer offerings using both mobile platforms.  While there may not be any ground-breaking news here, the fact that another manufacturer plans to continue producing Windows Phone devices is a positive sign for Microsoft.  We can only hope to see such commitments from carriers (Ahem...Sprint and Verizon).

Source: Window Phone Italy

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Acer Allegro shows up at CES 2012

Look at that, the Acer Allegro, an admittedly low-spec'd device is here at CES 2012 in Las Vegas. Microsoft is showing off the phone with numerous laptops on the show floor.

While the 1GHz device with a 3.6" screen doesn't inspire "oohs and aahs" it ain't half bad either for developing markets. With a 5MP camera and 8GB of storage, it should satisfy a lot of new users to the smartphone world. Either way, it was finally nice to see one in person.

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We've been following the Acer Allegro since it first came to light earlier in the year. Now MonWindowsPhone has caught wind of the Allegro being available at the French retailer RueDuCommerce for €284.05, a good price for the specifications. The Allegro is a mid-range generation 1 handset, which will be running Windows Phone Mango, and is perfect for those migrating to the platform and don't need their smartphone to imitate household appliances.

For a quick recap on what's packed inside the W4/Allegro:

  • 3.6-inch WVGA Capacitive screen,
  • Screen Resolution: 480×800
  • 5mp Camera with auto-focus.
  • HSPA 850/1900 or 900/2100 /GSM quad band 850/900/ 1800/ 1900 MHz Support.
  • Qualcomm MSM 8255 running at 1GHz (same processor as in the Xperia Play)
  • Wifi, Bluetooth 2.1
  • DLNA Support
  • Windows Phone Mango
  • 8GB Storage

Via: MonWindowsPhone

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Acer announces the W4

After being fairly quiet in the world of Windows Phone, Acer has finally announced the release of the Allegro handset. The first entry from the manufacturer will set the buyer back €299, slightly less than the price of the Nokia Lumia 710. Specification readout of the handset is as follows:

  • Dimensions of 11.6 x 5.9 x 13mm
  • Weight 126g
  • LCD 3.6-inch WVGA (480x800)
  • Qualcomm MSM8255 processor 1Ghz
  • Storage capacity of 8GB
  • 5 megapixel camera with LED flash
  • 1300mAh battery with autonomy of 6 hours talk time
  • Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
  • Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n
  • Various sensors (accelerometer, proximity sensor, light sensor, accounts)
  • A-GPS

The Allegro will be available in black and white in France. The expected release date is mid-November. 

Via: MonwindowsPhone (translate)

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Although we're note exactly hearing anyone clamoring for an Acer Windows Phone, at least not with the reported specs that the Allegro has on board, it's still nice to see a low to mid range offering for those in the market.

TelecomPaper is reporting that the Acer Allegro is set to go on sale in Europe this holiday season (think Christmas) for EUR 299, which ain't exactly cheap for Europe, it isn't too bad either.

We're guessing that the Allegro is simply the W4, a device we've seen making a few appearances here and there. To refresh, the W4/Allegro has the following specs:

  • 3.6-inch WVGA Capacitive screen,
  • Screen Resolution: 480×800
  • 5mp Camera with auto-focus.
  • HSPA 850/1900 or 900/2100 /GSM quad band 850/900/ 1800/ 1900 MHz Support.
  • Qualcomm MSM 8255 running at 1GHz (same processor as in the Xperia Play)
  • Wifi, Bluetooth 2.1
  • DLNA Support
  • Windows Phone Mango
  • 8GB Storage

So it's basically a Mango phone with Gen 1 features. Not bad, not great. Thanks, TheWeeBear, for the heads up!

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Microsoft today secured a deal from Acer and ViewSonic for licensing patents related to Android IP on both companies' phone offerings as well as ViewSonic's Chrome tablets. Continuing the trend of using their industry-wide licensing deal, Microsoft was able to settle peacefully with both companies, avoiding any sort of litigation, unlike with Motorola who are being sued by Microsoft (and vice versa). From Horacio Gutierrez, corporate vice president and deputy general counsel of Intellectual Property and Licensing at Microsoft

“We are pleased that Acer is taking advantage of our industry wide licensing program established to help companies address Android’s IP issues. This agreement is an example of how industry leaders can reach commercially reasonable arrangements that address intellectual property.”

What's this mean for Windows Phone? In short, we'll have more licensing money coming in from Android, in addition to Windows Phone, which is a bit funny. And Microsoft continues to put the squeeze on Android OEMs, reminding them that Android is far from free, as Google promises.

Source: Microsoft 1, 2; via: Android Central

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In what is becoming almost routine (see INQ), another OEM has come out and said that the Google-Motorola deal works out better for Microsoft than Google's Android. This time it was Walter Deppeler, president of Acer's operations in Europe, Middle East and Africa. At the Berlin IFA consumer conference on Friday, he was quoted by Reuters as saying "It was a good gift to Microsoft", that Google "work against some of their clients" and finally that Acer would consider the implications of the deal before committing further to an OS.

Acer, who makes low to mid-range handsets, especially in important emerging markets, has recently started using Android in 2010 and is now actively developing Windows Phone devices (see the W4). While their phones won't compete in the U.S. or Europe, they are expected to be important players in Asian markets in the future. Either way, it's telling to hear OEMs publicly state what is becoming more obvious: this Google-Motorola deal and their continued legal quagmires are not helping to boost OEM confidence in Android.

Source: Yahoo Finance

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The gentlemen over at WMPU have published this pretty neat video of the Acer W4 at IFA 2011. Bare with us when watching the footage and try to refrain from shouting at your screen, especially when the two demo devices are thrown about at the start of the video, ouch.

Although the Acer W4 only comes in 8GB flavouring, there is an LED notification light that a large majority of users desire. Also, much like the HTC Radar, it features DLNA and is going to be available in two colours - black and white. Lastly, the Acer W4 is to sport Acer FastCharge, which will enable the device to charge at a faster rate when connected to a Acer desktop or laptop.

Reminder of the specification sheet we posted:

  • 3.6-inch WVGA Capacitive screen,
  • Screen Resolution: 480×800
  • 5mp Camera with auto-focus.
  • HSPA 850/1900 or 900/2100 /GSM quad band 850/900/ 1800/ 1900 MHz Support.
  • Qualcomm MSM 8255 running at 1GHz (same processor as in the Xperia Play)
  • Wifi, Bluetooth 2.1
  • DLNA Support
  • Windows Phone Mango
  • 8GB Storage

While in previous photos we've all been slightly cautious about the Acer handset it does look much smarter in a real life video and is worth of running Mango. What do you make of it now we've seen more angles?

Source: WMPU

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Acer W4 gets pictured in detail

This week at IFA in Berlin, Germany, Acer was evidently showing off their W4 device aka their first foray into Windows Phone.

The device is far from wow-worthy with 8GB storage, 5MP camera and 1Ghz processor, but perhaps for the more low-end or developing markets, it could be quite compelling. We really like Acer laptops (cough, using one now) so we're interested in seeing where Acer goes with this and other devices. Check the other photos at AreaMobile.

Source: AreaMobile.de; Thanks, Alexander F., for the tip!

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News out of Auckland New Zealand is that the Acer M310 Mango phone made an appearance at Tech Ed 2011.  The shiny black, beveled-edge M310, which is said to look similar to the Acer W4, has a meager 8GB of storage (unfortunately no images were available but we're still digging).

However, word has it that one thing that sets it apart from its other WP7 brethren is the addition of an HDMI output jack.  This is an exciting feature in what otherwise sounds like a pretty basic phone.  Another nice feature is that it will support DLNA over Wifi, which will allow it to communicate with other DLNA-equipped devices such as TVs, Xbox, etc.

Asus also had a unnamed handset on display at Tech Ed, which seemed to be an engineering sample, complete with "non-final code."  The matte black Asus is worth a quick mention because it looked to have a front-facing camera, though that was not confirmed. 

It's nice to see some new features popping up on new WP7 Mango phones.  There has been a lot of news of where Windows Phone is headed with Skype integration and Xbox Live and features like HDMI and front-facing cameras will be key to bringing those thing to fruition.

Source: Windows Phone NZ; Via: Engadget

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We recently covered a Samsung device, namely the SGH-i937, which shares the same Bluetooth characteristics as Windows Phone Mango (as well as appearing on Occasional Gamer's list of devices recently). This model number is plus 10 from the SGH-i927 of the Galaxy S II handset so one could assume that this is a WP7 powered Galaxy S II MK II.

In the video above, Steve Guggenheimer (Corporate Vice President of the OEM Division at Microsoft), shows off a Samsung device that not only looks like the Galaxy S II, but appears to have a front facing camera. Also present in the video are ZTE and Acer handsets as well as a waterproof Fujitsu device.

Mango is expected to include front facing camera support. While it has not been officially announced by Microsoft, a leaked HTC device and references found in the Mango developer tools beta 2 both point towards the possibility.

What do you make of the four devices shown, are you more interested in what Nokia has to offer?

Update: Microsoft has requested the video be removed because those devices were not to be shown off. So instead, you can head to WithinWindows to watch it or to Microsoft's own site where they still have it up, ahem.


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Acer W4 hands on [Video]

To go along with our quick Acer W4 handset post, here's a snappy video over at Engadget who had the opportunity to look at a mockup device. One thing you may notice is no front-facing camera and the specification (which was also covered in the previous article) states only a single 5MP camera so we'll have to see if anything should change nearer to release. Strange for a Mango device, I would have thought they would be packing more of a punch in terms of looks and specification with regards to the huge software update.

8GB storage? C'mon Acer, at least give us 16 or a MicroSD slot, although this could well be one of the lower-end devices aimed at people who are slowly adopting smartphones. Only time will tell.

Source: Engadget

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An Acer Windows Phone 7 handset was spotted at Computex '11, and looks vaguely similar to already available devices (LG in particular). If you remember, Acer are one of the announced manufacturers to be making handsets by the time Mango arrives and the notable mention of November on the information sheet ties in with our coverage of Acer to bring products to the table in Q4 this year.

Anyone looking forward to this device, and others from newly focused handset manufacturers?

Update: Specifications have been posted:

  • 3.6-inch WVGA Capacitive screen,
  • Screen Resolution: 480×800
  • 5mp Camera with auto-focus.
  • HSPA 850/1900 or 900/2100 /GSM quad band 850/900/ 1800/ 1900 MHz Support.
  • Qualcomm MSM 8255 running at 1GHz (same processor as in the Xperia Play)
  • Wifi, Bluetooth 2.1
  • DLNA Support
  • Windows Phone Mango
  • 8GB Storage

Source: WMPU

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Acer producing WP7 devices in Q4 2011?

Pocket-lint have had their ears burnt with the news from an Acer spokesperson that the company is indeed making the move to Windows Phone 7. According to their report, Acer's entry will be timed at around September or October '11.

In a previous article we covered Acer’s commitment to WP7 being internal development only. This update from Pocket-lint’s’ source is potentially fantastic news in an exciting way for a number of reasons, but is actually expected regardless. Acer is a huge Microsoft manufacturer with packing out a huge selection of home computers and laptops. 

The exciting part of this update is how WP7 seems to be able to attract more attention from handset makers that leads to more exposure and hopefully more users. Could this simply be because of the upcoming update later in the year (codenamed Mango) which handset manufacturers are awaiting for the platform to mature? What do you think of the report on Acer? 

Via: Pocket-lint

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Acer has been one of those on again/off again OEMs in regards to Windows Phone 7. They have a very strong  history with Microsoft, having released numerous Windows Mobile devices in the past and are one of their biggest OEMs for laptops and tablets.

We spoke with Acer's Dac Nguyen, Product Marketing Manger, Smart Handheld Business Group about Windows Phone and the prospects of Acer releasing some devices in the future. A few months ago, they spoke positively of the OS and there were even rumors that Acer had already been working on a phone.

From what we're told, Acer is still developing Windows Phone internally (they certainly didn't deny it), but as of yet have nothing to announce and seem still keen on Android (they released 11 Android phones in the last year). So like Asus, they're another OEM who is playing with the hardware and OS on an engineering level, but not officially developing any consumer product just yet.  We suppose once Windows Phone gain more momentum, they'll be ready to commit and bring devices to market quickly, but until then they're sitting on the side lines.

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While the 2011 Mobile World Congress is still about two months away, rumors that we will see some new Windows Phones announced during the conference are surfacing. Leading the rumors is the ASUS E600.

The E600 is still a bit of a mystery with very little detail being leaked on the companies first Windows Phone 7 device. The phone is rumored to be heading to AT&T and dispels any rumors that ASUS was shying away from Windows Phone 7.

Other potential new phones making an appearance at the 2011 MWC could include one from Acer (the other "A" manufacturer), the CDMA phones (Trophy and 7 Pro) and a GSM 7 Pro.  We keep hearing Acer is going to join the Windows Phone 7 crowd but have yet to see much movement.

We're also expecting more details on the Windows Phone 7 China launch at the 2011 MWC. This will also generate new phones from Lenova, ZTE and Huawei that could be showcased at the 2011 MWC.

Source: Digitimes, via: unwiredview

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It's been rumored and speculated in the past that Acer was going to start playing with Windows Phone 7 and that looks to be confirmed now.

In an interview with Mobilized, Acer CEO Gianfranco Lanci detailed their plans and reasoning behind the move:

We saw a lot of limitations on Windows Phone a couple of years ago and we moved to Android because of user experience, and even the possibility to be a little more creative from a content offering and so forth is better than on the Windows phone. If we look at Windows Phone 7, today, I think we see the same opportunity you can see on Android in terms of customization.

That's it. No word on where they're at, carriers or what quarter we should expect their debut. Since Acer has had little luck in the U.S., we're skeptical we'll ever see it here. And did he say the same customization than Android? We wonder if Acer has seen WP7 yet.

Speaking of "A" names, we're curious if the folks at Asus have made their minds up yet?

Source: Mobilized; via MobileCrunch

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Acer announces P300 and P400

Acer has announced two new Windows Phones that will be running Windows Mobile 6.5.3.

The Acer Neotouch P300 is a sliding-keyboard designed Windows Phone that will sport a 3.2" WQVGA touch screen.  The Acer NeoTouch P400 is a "black slab" Windows Phone that is powered by the Qualcomm 7227 600mhz processor.

The P300 is listed as being available in March of 2010 while the P400 is expected to hit the market in May of 2010. Both will likely hit the European market first, with the potential of eventually finding the U.S. market.

Dieter and Phil hope to get some hands-on time with these two Windows Phones but in the meantime, for more on the available specs and pictures of these Acer phones, ease on past the break.

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