If Windows 8 is here to stay -- and Microsoft hasn't given us any reason to believe it plans on backpeddaling at this point -- then you might be best served by investing in a touchscreen laptop the next time you're in the market for a notebook. Touchscreens aren't always cheap, but it looks like Acer is planning to aggressively pursue the entry-level market with an 11.6-inch touchscreen laptop that costs just $399.
According to Digitimes and its sources in the upstream supply chain, Acer will launch such a system in the middle of May. Both the notebook and the touch panel are being produced by Wistron, which will use soda lime in the construction. It's a cheaper alternative to Corning Gorilla Glass -- about a 10 percent savings -- though it's also lower quality, not the least bit surprising at that price point.
Acer figures touchscreen laptops currently account for 15 percent of its notebook shipments. That's a bit lower than the OEM anticipated, having previously figured that $599 would be the sweet spot for a touchscreen laptop, it just hasn't played out that way in the market place.
Not to be outdone, Digitimes says Asus will launch touchscreen laptops in the same price range.