27 February 2017
The educational sector in this era is increasingly getting more and more technology-oriented. Educational notebooks are a $43 Billion a year industry, 50% of which is dominated by Google's ChromeOS. Google has recently brought forward two new Chromebooks from Asus and Acer for education with Android apps support. However, Microsoft's Windows 10 is also upping its game, and Windows educational devices are on the rise as well. The latest of these has just been launched by Acer.
The new device, called the TravelMate Spin B1, is a very rugged and long-lasting 2-in-1 convertible notebook geared towards students. It is an 11.6 inch device (screen-wise) running Windows 10 Pro. Acer unveiled the device at the BETT 2017 show in London today.
The most immediately noticeable feature about the B1 is its durability. There are shock-absorbing rubber bumpers around the frame, and the screen is pressure-resistant. A unique gutter system under the keyboard and touch-pad makes the device spill-proof, because students are often prone to such accidents. Another great thing about the Spin B1 is its long-lasting battery. With 13 hours of usage time, students don't have to worry about running out of during a class.
One of the great benefits of a 2-in-1, which is not lost on this device, is the versatility. The TravelMate Spin B1 features four different modes for various aspects of classroom learning. These modes include Tablet mode for a personal experience, Stand and Tent modes for group-based learning, and a regular Laptop mode.
The 2-in-1 also features a stylus that supports Windows Ink. This gives students a cool new way of jotting down notes and editing their documents. Besides the usual Microsoft OneNote and Office goodies, there's the Acer TeachSmart™ software which works in conjunction with embedded multi-colored LED lights on each student’s notebook cover to allow them to easily communicate with the teacher, get class materials, take quizzes, and even request bathroom breaks.
As far as specifications of the device go, not much information is known. We know that the device will have Intel® Pentium® processors with Intel® HD Graphic. There is a fast dual-band 2x2 MIMO 802.11ac wireless modem, Bluetooth 4.0 support, two USB 3.0 ports, one USB 2.0 port, an HDMI port, and an SD card reader for file sharing.
The Acer TravelMate Spin B1 will be available to education and commercial customers in the second quarter of 2017. Exact specifications, prices, and availability will vary by region, according to the company.