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Acer C7 Chromebook review

A very affordable Chromebook. But with flaws.

Our Verdict

Product features

  • Screen Resolution : 1366 x 768
  • Processor Core : Dual-core (2 Core)

View full specification

For

  • Cheap
  • Good build quality
  • Pretty good screen
  • Simple to use

Against

  • Limitations of Chrome OS
  • Poor battery life
  • Unresponsive keyboard
  • No 3G option
  • Hard drive out of place

Overall performance of the Acer C7 Chromebook is good. The Intel processor makes computationally intensive stuff such as playing HD video iPlayer streams or (and yes, this qualifies as 'computationally intensive' as far as a Chromebook is concerned) playing the Chrome-optimised version of Angry Birds pretty smooth. But the fact that it has a hard drive rather than an SSD means the whole thing feels more sluggish than it ought to.

So, although performance is acceptable once you settle down to doing something, whether that's writing in Google Docs, watching Netflix, or playing a simple game of Bejeweled, there are stutters and delays in getting to those tasks.

It's not something you can't live with, but having enjoyed the responsiveness of other Chromebooks, it's a shame to see the Acer C7 Chromebook lumbered with old-fashioned laptop problems.

Acer C7 Chromebook review

You feel it in startup too. The Samsung Series 3 boots from cold in under 11 seconds, while the Acer C7 Chromebook barely scrapes in under 20. Again, it's not insupportable, but it's definitely not desirable.

Naturally, since it's designed primarily as a device to access web services, how fast it feels is also affected by the speed of your internet connection and how fast Chrome can render pages and run web apps.

As to the latter, Chrome is certainly speedy, and unless you're working with huge documents, you're unlikely to feel like the web apps are slow or getting in your way much more than you would with normal, locally-running programs.

Acer C7 Chromebook review

And as to the former, well, it never felt like the 8Mbps broadband connection we used most often during testing, nor the significantly slower Wi-Fi in a few coffee shops, slowed us down much either. And, of course, even a souped-up Core i7 monster would have the same bottlenecks if you were using the same suite of online services.

Stability is good. We've had issues with occasional spontaneous reboots of Chromebooks in the past - which proved not to be as bad as they sound, since apps such as Google Docs do a terrific job of saving your work as you go - but the Acer C7 Chromebook just kept stoically soldiering on.

The keyboard, though, is very much a mixed bag. It feels dead and unresponsive; we tried to re-train our muscle memory to use lighter touches to compensate, but it never felt anything other than lacklustre.

Acer C7 Chromebook review

And while it feels churlish to kvetch about this kind of thing in such a cheap laptop, we kept getting slightly distracted by the fact that, on our keyboard, the letters were printed a little off-centre.

There are compensations, mind you. Unlike with previous Chromebooks where the caps lock key is replaced with a search button - which proves handy if you can force yourself to use it, though you can always reassign it to caps lock in Settings - here, you not only get your caps lock key back in its usual place, you also get a search key on either side of the space bar.

Tech Specs

Product TypeNetbook
Green CompliantYes
Processor ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ManufacturerIntel
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeNo
Graphics Memory AccessibilityShared
Maximum Battery Run Time6 Hour
Finger Print ReaderNo
Solid State Drive Capacity16 GB
HDMIYes
WebcamYes
Backlight TechnologyLED
Product FamilyChromebook AC700
Processor ModelN570
ColourBlack
Operating SystemChrome OS
Brand NameAcer
Processor Speed1.66 GHz
Processor TypeAtom
Screen Size29.5 cm (11.6")
Number of Cells6-cell
Screen Resolution1366 x 768
Standard Memory2 GB
Weight (Approximate)1.45 kg
Cache1 MB
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityWEEE, RoHS
64-bit ProcessingYes
Chipset ManufacturerIntel
Chipset ModelNM10 Express
Number of Total Memory Slots1
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.1
Total Number of USB Ports2
Memory StandardDDR3-1333/PC3-10600
Height25.5 mm
Width285.4 mm
Depth204.8 mm
Screen ModeHD
Memory TechnologyDDR3 SDRAM
Product SeriesAC700
ManufacturerAcer, Inc
Product ModelAC700-N572G01akk
Product NameChromebook AC700-N572G01akk Netbook
Pointing Device TypeTouchPad
Product LineChromebook
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberLU.SG50C.004
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.acer.co.uk
Marketing Information

You spend tons of your time on the Web, so why not get there as quickly as possible? The Acer AC700 delivers a fresh, Internet-centric experience with optimized speed, simplicity and security.

Smooth sailing in the cloud

Imagine hitting the power button and being on your favorite sites in only 8 seconds! Open the lid to start, and close it to sleep. It's that fast. Web pages load quickly and online apps run smoothly thanks to a dual-core Intel® Atom™ processor and Adobe® Flash® support. And, navigate through all your stuff stored in the cloud with ease and precision using the big, click-anywhere touchpad.

Maximum Memory2 GB
Battery ChemistryLithium Ion (Li-Ion)
Package Contents
  • Chromebook AC700-N572G01akk Netbook
  • Lithium Ion Battery
  • AC Adapter
Limited Warranty1 Year