One of the major complaints about Acer's C7 was its 3.5 to 4-hour battery life. While full-fledged laptop users may be used to middling longevity, Chromebook users aren't. In fact, run-time is supposed to be one of the splashier benefits of this niche. Without processor-intensive applications, or indeed any local applications at all, this particular type of ultraportable is supposed to deliver an absolutely divine length of operability. 

Well, Acer seems to have risen to the occasion now with its update, the C710-2055. This new version boasts a 6-cell battery array that promises up to six hours of battery life. Sure, the Intel Celeron 847-powered device still lands slightly shy of Samsung Chromebook's ARM-assisted 6.5 hours, but Acer makes up for it in RAM: The company boosted the memory, doubling Sammy's and its own previous version, for a total of 4GB.

But those aren't the only things that got a bump — so did the price. At $80 more than the original, the C710-2055 is going for $280. Of course, that's still cheap compared to the Chromebook Pixel's wallet-gouging $1,300 price point, and Acer's hoping to court the education market with this offering. The company's pushing the battery life and light weight (3.05 lbs), to appeal to schools and students. 

What do you think? Is this a winner? Can it maintain Acer's track record of selling more Chromebooks than Windows 8 laptops? Tell us if you're interested in this updated C7 or a competitor, or if you're sitting out the Chromebook hoopla altogether.

Acer C7 Chromebook Boosts e-Learning, Collaboration

SAN JOSE, Calif.,  – Acer America today debuts new Acer C7 Chromebook models for its commercial customers, especially schools looking for a way to enhance student learning with technology that is affordable and impactful.

"Chromebooks are an ideal option for schools and districts that want to quickly implement a technology program that will significantly enhance student learning," said Gregg Prendergast, vice president, U.S. Commercial Sales, Acer America. "The Acer C7 Chromebook delivers the advanced capabilities that will help students excel in all areas of their education. In addition, the Acer C7 Chromebook is incredibly affordable as a stand-alone product, and even more affordable when schools consider the reduced total cost of ownership thanks to its manageability and security features."

Students Kept Secure, IT Administrators Can Manage with Ease

Teachers and parents will appreciate that the Acer C7 Chromebook is automatically updated, so their students have the latest software version and protection against online threats. The Chrome OS has security features built in to defend against malware and viruses to further ensure students' online safety. Also, the available web-based management console lets administrators set up and manage users, apps and policies across all Chromebooks in the network, reducing the need to travel to separate classrooms.

In addition, the Acer C7 Chromebook is an excellent choice for schools considering a 1-to-1 computing initiative. IT administrators will be pleased with both the affordable price of the Chromebook as well as the reduced cost of maintenance and support. The robust features and capabilities in Google Apps for Education mean there is no additional required investment in expensive software. Students can also use Chrome Web Store Apps to find additional educational apps for enhanced learning.

Collaborate and Safely Store Projects

The Acer C7 line is ideal for schools planning to give multiple students access to the Chromebooks, either in their classrooms or on a mobile cart. Each student can log on with their unique account to access email, documents, website bookmarks and other projects. Chromebooks come with Google Drive, an online file storage service, so students and teachers can save and access their files safely online and won't need to back up manually. Teachers and students can also access files as well as create and edit Google Docs and use Gmail offline for greater flexibility.

With Google Docs, it's easy to share and collaborate on school projects such as presentations and reports that incorporate input from several students. Students in middle school and high school can also see calendars set up by the teacher to track homework, assignments, and projects in various classes. The Acer C7 Chromebooks quickly connect to campus wireless networks with integrated 802.11b/g/n WiFi, so they can be used in a dedicated classroom or on a mobile cart.

Education Starts Quickly; Delivers Battery Life and Performance for All-Day Learning

Students can take advantage of the many educational websites and Chrome apps available online for enhanced learning. Students will also be able to get right to work with the Acer C7; it boasts a less-than 18-second boot time and can almost instantly resume from sleep mode. Plus, using Chrome is easy and intuitive for students and teachers alike.

The new Acer C710-2055 Chromebook for customers in the U.S. is powered by a 6-cell battery that delivers up to six hours of life for all-day student learning without having to recharge during school hours.(1) It is powered by an Intel Celeron 847 processor (2MB L3 cache, 1.10GHz, DDR3 1333 MHz) and 4GB of RAM to provide exceptional speed and responsiveness when running multiple apps and programs.

Mobility and Multimedia Enhance Learning

The Acer C7 weighs only 3.05 pounds, so it's portable enough to move between classrooms and even outside for projects in classes such as science and art. It measures only one inch thin, so it can easily be stored in a classroom, on a mobile cart, or can fit into a backpack for schools that allow a check-out program. The slim size incorporates a full-sized keyboard that is comfortable to use for web browsing, creating presentations and running educational apps.

Multimedia can be incorporated into student learning with the Acer C7's integrated HD 1.3MP webcam. Video and photos can be captured and incorporated into presentations, websites and slideshows. Plus, the Acer C7 has three USB 2.0 ports, so it can be connected to a digital camera and other devices. It also has an HDMI port for sharing video and content to external displays for a presentation. Students can easily view websites, apps, video and more on the C7's 11.6-inch HD Widescreen CineCrystalTM LED-backlit LCD.

Pricing, Availability and Warranty

The new Acer C710-2055 is available now in the U.S. at retailers and from authorized Acer resellers for $279.99. Additional configurations are available in the Acer C7 Chromebook line.

The new Acer C7 comes with a standard one-year parts and labor warranty, which can be extended to three years with the Acer Advantage service. All Acer Chromebooks are backed by toll-free service and support.(2)

1.) Actual battery life varies depending on product specifications, computer settings and applications or features launched. All batteries' maximum capacity diminishes with time and use.

2.) Limited warranties and service agreements apply. May not be available in all locations. Availability varies. Other conditions apply. For a copy, write to Acer Customer Service, P.O. Box 6137, Temple, TX 76503.