By Vamien McKalin | Jun 12, 2013 02:20 PM EDT
The first Windows 8 Acer-branded tablet with an 8.1-inch display is gearing for launch come next week. The is what consumers should expect from many OEMs in the future as Microsoft evolves Windows 8 into a potentially solid platform that supports a range of screen sizes.
The tablet in question is the Acer Iconia W3, and while it most likely won't win any awards with its design, it is the first Windows 8 tablet to come in such a small form factor. At first we had thought that consumers won't get their hands on a 8-inch Windows 8 tablet until after Windows 8.1, but Acer came out and blew our minds.
So far, various retail sites have opened up pre-order shipments for consumers who are interested in walking around with a small device running Windows 8 Pro. The Acer Iconia W3's 8.1-inch display has a 1280x800 resolution, which is quite noticeable for its small size. The device is powered by Intel Atom Dual Core Z2760 1.5GHz CPU, and 2GB of RAM. The GPU here is pretty mediocre, but that is what one should expect from a small tablet. However, it should be enough to play games from the Windows 8 store, but don't expect to take advantage of the titles available on Steam.
In addition, there's a 2-megapixe rear camera, and a similar camera at the front of the device. When it comes down to battery life, users should expect up to 8 hours of playtime before it runs dry, but it all depends on what is being done.
The Acer Iconia W3 8.1-inch Windows 8 tablet is not only for casual use, because the device comes pre-packed with Microsoft Office 2013. The hardware might not be what many users are looking for, but the software is in a completely different ball game. However, one should take note that Office 2013 on the Acer Iconia W3 is the Home and Student versions, which means Outlook is out of the question.
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