Processor: 1.5GHz Intel Core i3-4012Y dual-core
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 4200
Storage: 60GB SSD + 500GB hard drive
Display: 11.6-inch touchscreen
Screen resolution: 1920 x 1080
OS: Windows 8.1
The PC industry may be going through its ups and downs, but the hybrid market is where most of the action is happening, as companies try fusions of laptops and tablets into a single device.
Acer Aspire Switch 11 is one of the more popular such creations that launched recently.
Powered by Windows 8.1, this convertible is a larger version of the Switch 10 — with a larger display and the same magnetic Snap Hinge. Meaning it is possible to completely detach the tablet from the keyboard dock, hence the name of the device.
The magnets are strong, and also make it possible for this device to be used in the tent mode, similar to many other hybrids available on the market right now.
Although a little on the heavy side, the tablet boasts a nice metal cover on the rear. The plastic keyboard and trackpad are satisfactory. But overall, this is a device that is a little on the chunky side, with a tablet that is 11mm thick and the full package weighing in at 1.6kg.
The choice of processor comes down to the model chosen.
There is an option of a 2GB variant with an Intel Atom processor and the lackluster 1366 x 768 resolution screen, though the full Core i3 (4012Y) model with double the RAM at 4GB offers radically improved performance.
Interestingly, both the lower resolution and the full HD 1920 x 1080 pixels displays are IPS panels, with Gorilla Glass coating, meaning the touchscreens are nice, crisp and offer good viewing angles.
The cheaper model comes with only 32GB of flash storage, however, the more expensive one offers an okay 60GB SSD with an additional 500GB hard drive inside the keyboard dock. You also get full size USB ports on the dock, WiFi connectivity, Bluetooth 4.0, a microSD card slot and a microHDMI port.
Where this device falters (apart from the somewhat clunky design) is the battery life, where the Acer Aspire Switch 11 came in with a disappointing 4 hours 20 minutes of usage.
Which is actually lower than what the Switch 10 offered.
It is an improvement over the smaller model in terms of aesthetics, a larger screen and better specifications, but the battery performance drags it down. Acer has priced this one competitively, though, so if you are looking for an affordable option, this may be worth a look.
With the understanding that there are better hybrids available right now than the Switch 11.