The Acer Aspire S3 was the first Ultrabook out of the gate, and it was priced at an attractive $899. However, it cut a few corners, offering just a 20GB SSD in combination with a 320GB mechanical hard drive, where other Ultrabooks have a full-size SSD. While it was able to resume from sleep in a matter of seconds, its performance and boot time were well behind the competition.
Now, Acer is upping the specs of the S3—adding a 240GB SSD and an Intel Core i7 processor–and upping the price to $1,299. This configuration should see performance on a par with Ultrabooks such as the ASUS Zenbook UX31 and the Lenovo IdeaPad U300s. We’re interested to see if it will improve upon the S3′s poor battery life of 4 hours and 23 minutes.
The rest of the notebook remains the same: a 13.3-inch, 1366 x 768 display, aluminum/magnesium chassis (though the deck and underside are plastic), a thickness of 0.51 inches, and a weight of 3 pounds.
Both configurations of the S3 will be available for sale this week at retailers including Amazon, NewEgg, TigerDirect, and Best Buy.