Acer has been showing off a 7 inch Android tablet called the Acer Iconia Tab A100 for months, but it looks like the company is finally ramping up production and getting ready to ship the tablet. According to DigiTimes Acer will get about 30,000 units from Compal Electronics this month. That’s the Taiwanese device maker that’s manufacturing the tablet for Acer. In th enext few months the number should jump to 100,000.

Acer Iconia Tab A100

DigiTimes also says that Acer will launch its first “ultrabook” models in the fourth quarter of the year. Intel coined the term to describe a new class of thin and light laptops with the latest Intel processors and price tags lower than $1000.

Acer has been releasing laptops with 9 to 12 inch displays for years, and whether the term ultrabook sticks or not, I suspect they’ll continue to release thin and light notebook models for the foreseeable future. But one feature I hadn’t heard before is that the Acer ultrabooks will reportedly boot in just six seconds and connect to the internet in as little as 2.5 seconds. Either DigiTimes is confusing ultrabooks with Chromebooks (laptops that run Google’s Chrome operating system), or Intel, Acer, and possibly Microsoft are working on some serious improvements in boot speed.

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3 replies on “Acer to ship 7 inch tablet, new thin and light laptop soon”

  1. Yeah, there’s a few boot enhancing technologies in the works.  Like Intel’s Sandy Bridge feature called Smart Response Technology (SRT) that they enable on certain chipset motherboards.

    Companies are starting to take advantage of it and bolting small SSDs onto the motherboard to basically act like a performance boosting cache memory that depending on configurations can boost both write and read speeds.

    Faster boot times being one of the many applications, especially since it’s NAND memory and thus the system can basically wake up much like a SSD system can wake up from hibernation.

    While MS is working to take advantage of such features with Windows 8.

    1. SRT is useful, but having used it, it doesn’t make my computer boot nearly that fast.  This would require a major rework of BIOS to get that load time down, plus some very heavy optimization of the windows boot performance.

      Currently the fastest I’ve seen a computer boot fully to windows from a SSD is about 22 seconds.  Which is fast, but not like we’re talking here.

      On another and very specifically technical note, NAND flash isn’t really any faster than any other HDD technology.  The advantages it has are in search speeds since it doesn’t have to wait for a platter to spin up under it, and RAID performance.  Each NAND block is pretty slow and a good HDD can easily defeat it in any form of sequential read.  However since information isn’t always sequentially stored, and most SSD’s are comprised from anywhere between 6 and twelve blocks which are raided together and information is stripped across each block, the real world performance is higher…  Now getting to my excessively geeky point:  The power of SSDs is in low seek times and the massively parallel storage mechanism, NAND itself is almost a liability in these drives (page accessibility only, limited write cycles, limited per block performance, etc), and one they are researching heavily to get OFF of.  So although SSDs rock the socks off of every other storage medium available currently, the NAND itself isn’t why they rock…

      All this is to say, that it’s going to require a bit more than SRT and mSATA SSDs in addition to spinning platter data drives, to get a 2.5 cold boot time.  From hibernation to usability…  MAYBE, but again I’m feeling pretty good if my system restores in 4-5 seconds.  So I’m with Brad on this, that would be some pretty heavy optimization, and not the kind of thing I would necessarily even expect with Windows 8 out of the box unless MS is involved in the optimization process pretty heavily and just not telling anyone for some reason.

      1. All of which is why I also mentioned that they got a few things in the work for boosting performance and boot time.  SRT was just an example.

        Many of the other technologies have been in progress for over a year but one or more of them may finally be ready for market.

        Like Lenovo has been working on their Rapidboot for a few year now, fairly recently they did a sky diving stunt to show how it can let a system boot in as little as 10 seconds.

        Others have been experimenting with UEFI and Fast Boot in combination with SSD.  Intel has other enhancements they are starting to offer like a Rapid Boot BIOS, with toolkit for custom optimization. Systems with Intel Rapid Start utilize hibernate to NAND, which they officially claim will allow your notebook to resume from a zero-power hibernate state in 5 – 6 seconds. 

        Mind this is something they are introducing for Sandy Bridge but not really pushing until Ivy Bridge, which brings in 22nm and speed enhancing features like their 3D transistor technology, and may also introduce more advance SSD technology.

        Others still have been looking into customizing the start up process for a far more rapid boot time using other tricks.

        Not to mention just having fast booting OS that can load faster than Windows to just provide basic service like web browsing.  Like Asus has Express Gate for example and one of the other companies may have developed something better.

        A combination of these technologies, or possibly one of the superior methods, could be what they are drawing upon for those claimed speed numbers.

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