Tuesday, 5 April 2011
Sometimes engineers get excited about things without stopping to ask the question: Why? Why is this better? Why would anyone want this?
Such questions, it would appear, were not asked in the labs of Acer. Its latest offering, the Iconia, is one of the most bizarre products to ever make it to production. The Iconia, when closed, looks like a laptop. When opened, however, all is revealed: the Iconia is actually two 14-inch touchscreens joined at a hinge.
This is, frankly, insane. Instead of a physical keyboard..
one can actually type on, the $1,200 Iconia (available for pre-order now) has a virtual one that is temperamental and twitchy. Supporting two 14-inch touchscreens, along with all the other hardware expected of a Windows 7 computer, means the Iconia weighs 6.2 pounds — making it too heavy to really serve as a laptop.
Acer would like us to believe that we will be swiping and touching our way to nirvana twice as fast with its dual-screen marvel, but that in no way takes into account the way people are using touchscreens (intimately, in lightweight, hand-held devices). This is just another case of an engineering department losing touch with reality. Just because something can be done, does not mean it always should be.