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The First Look at Acer ICONIA Smart
We have to start with the fact that Acer ICONIA Smart is an Android flagship of the company. At the same time, I think the model requires a separate class of its own due to dimensions, shape and screen ratio. Let's look at all components in turn.
Design and body materials
In this section I can be partial, because I liked ICONIA Smart (I will try to omit this strange caps locked word thereafter) at first sight. It happens that a smartphone is not a thing of beauty, but you like it nonetheless. The unique selling point is a prolonged screen and a similar body.
The body is made of metal similarly to HTC Legend. Plastic is used only at the back (battery cover and SIM card and microSD slots) and at the top (where antennas are situated). We can easily call the handset expensive in terms of build and materials. It is just pleasant to hold in hands.
Sides, top, bottom and buttons are made of plastic. The screen is covered by glass or a similar material. It is easily soiled though.
Dimensions and build
Acer Smart is not particularly broad, but it is so long! Look at the picture and compare this model with HTC Desire.
The handset is long enough to be labeled a "sausage". On the other hand, this feature makes Acer Smart unusual among all current Android smartphones. You cannot find many phones, which look like that.
The dimensions and weight are the following: 141.7 x 64.5 x 13.6 mm, 185 g. Look how the phone fits a hand:
The build of engineering samples is good. I could not find any fault here.
Under the screen we get standard "robot" buttons located on a long hardware key. At least it is not a sensor one. The unit is easy to use.
On the right side you can find large and convenient buttons for volume control and camera. On the left one cap covers microUSB and HDMI.
An on/off button is located at the top. This button is large and can be easily pressed. Nearby we have a 3.5 mm headphones jack.
In Acer Smart the screen comes to the fore. It is more important here than in any other smartphone. The screen is usually used to display information, but in Smart the screen is an element of its design. It is time to mention the specs of the screen.
A 4.8″ TFT touchscreen (1024x480) offers an aspect ratio of 21:9. The color reproduction here loses to S-LCD or AMOLED, but the picture is nice. Viewing angles are excellent with appropriate brightness for sunny days.
In Acer Smart we have a question of games and apps reproduction. I cannot say anything special as I could not check how third party programs run on the smartphone. Below are given screenshots with standard software and menu items.
There is nothing special to mention here. Standard OS Android 2.3 is accompanied by a proprietary Acer shell. You can find a suite of apps and an Acer screen keypad.
The device is built around Qualcomm MSM8255 platform and a 1 GHz processor. The phone boasts 512 MB of RAM and 8 GB of internal memory for user data accompanied by a microSD slot.
We also have to mention an 8 MP camera with autofocus and flash, Dolby Mobile and DLNA support. The phone has a frontal 2 MP camera for video calls and auto portraits.
Acer ICONIA Smart will appear around April at the price of $680-850. If the company launches the model at a price closer to the lower figure it can attract attention of customers. It will be a crowd puller anyway courtesy of its looks.
The device is unusual by its screen aspect ratio. On one hand it is weird, but this screen can be used for an array of purposes from reading books, documents and Internet articles to viewing widescreen video.
Published 16 February 2011
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