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Acer remains committed to Windows 8 tablets

2012/08/09 20:06:50

Taipei, Aug. 9 (CNA) Taiwanese computer maker Acer Inc. said Thursday it is still planning to launch new tablet computers running on Microsoft Corp.'s Windows 8 system despite the direct competition from the software giant's own tablet PC.

Acer Chairman and CEO J.T. Wang said the partnership between Acer and Microsoft remains unchanged as the two companies had negotiated on the impact of the "Surface" tablet, which Microsoft said will go on sale in October.

"I feel that they (Microsoft) are also figuring ways to reduce the negative impact," Acer Chairman and CEO J.T. Wang told reporters on the sidelines of a conference in Taipei held by the Asian Productivity Organization.

"We've kept an eye on their pricing and channel strategies," he said. "The impact will be great if their tablet is priced as low as US$199, like the Kindle Fire. But the impact will be smaller if it is priced at US$599 or US$499."

On Tuesday, the Financial Times reported that Acer had urged Microsoft to reconsider its decision to enter the tablet market because other PC brands may react negatively to the idea.

Industry insiders believe the relationship between Microsoft and local brand-name PC makers may undergo changes following Microsoft's move, which is aimed at countering Apple Inc.'s iPad and lightweight laptops.

The strategy could threaten other makers in the non-Apple Wintel camp, industry analysts said. More broadly, the entry of Google, Amazon and Microsoft into the lower-priced laptop and tablet markets could squeeze the bottom line of companies like Acer in the long run, analysts said.

(By Jeffrey Wu)