Emerging Technology

GADGET WATCH: Acer Aspire S7 (2013)

Patrick Stafford /

Competitors in the ultrabook market have been busy over the past few years, attempting to catch up to Apple’s success. While some have come close, few have been able to offer the same kind of value at the right price point.

So has the Acer Aspire S7 been able to do just that? The reviews are certainly positive – but you’ll have to decide for yourself.

Hardware and features

The S7 features a 13-inch LED screen at a native 1920×1080 resolution, featuring multitouch technology.

The laptop also features a 128GB solid-state hard drive, 8GB of RAM, integrated Intel graphics and a Haswell processor. Connectivity-wise, the laptop features two USB ports, one HDMI port and a headphone port. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are also included.

The webcam is capable of shooting video at 720p, while the device also features an SD card reader.

What’s the consensus?

Over at The Verge, the publication started off the interview with a compliment – “the S7 is straight-up made for airplanes”.

“It’s incredibly thin and light, with a hinge that opens to any angle you want and a screen that looks great from even the oddest seatback-induced angle.”

Regarding the design, The Verge even said the S7 may even come out on top of the MacBook Air, saying “every detail appears to have been considered” including the underbite of the lid and the glowing logo.

“From the glowing logo to the hinge-mounted fan that looks cool rather than simply necessary, it’s everything a laptop should be — and perhaps as importantly, nothing more.”

The trackpad, The Verge said, is both “good and bad”. It’s smooth, with a usable pointer, although the publication said there were a few instances in which the reviewer wanted to scroll but ended up just selected text instead.

Over at Engadget, the publication said the keyboard was sturdy and admirable, and noted the improvement of the trackpad over the previous model.

And while the publication noted the display was “less of a novelty than it was none months ago…it’s as lovely as ever”.

“Truly, these colors just won’t quit: whether you watch from off to the side or with the screen dipped forward, the saturation and contrast look about the same as they do when you’re watching straight-on.”

“Unless being able to brag about pixel density somehow makes you feel better about yourself, we suspect this 1080p panel will do just fine.”

However, the publication did say the audio quality from the speakers was merely average.

Finally, over at Gizmodo, there was plenty of praise for the battery life, although it said this amount of life is standard across every ultrabook in the current generation.

“I got through entire 9+ hour workdays on a single charge a few times, typically running at just under 50% brightness, but pumping it up when adjusting images.”

The publication also noted the device scored five hours and 19 minutes on a “fairly punishing battery test”, with it called a “massive improvement over last year’s ultrabooks”.

Who’s it for?

It may have taken a while, but the Acer Aspire S7 seems to be the best Windows ultrabook you could buy. While there are some small issues, they’re nothing to get concerned about.

Sure, you could drop a few hundred dollars less and buy a MacBook, but if you’re not married to the Apple and want a better screen, the S7 is well worth the money.

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Patrick Stafford

Patrick Stafford is a freelance journalist and a former deputy editor of SmartCompany.

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