Acer’s new Chromebook 315 arrives at CES 2019 with a custom AMD processor

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Acer just presented the Chromebook 315 at CES 2019 in Las Vegas. Scheduled to arrive this quarter, it will be the company’s first Chromebook based on an all-in-one “APU” processor made by AMD. Acer typically uses Intel processors in Chromebooks, but the company has chosen custom APUs for this model to better support Chrome and Android-based applications. APUs (for “Accelerated Processing Unit”) combine a CPU and a GPU in a single chip.

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Acer’s Chromebook 315 will be based on two seventh-generation AMD A-Series APUs: the A6-9220C and the A4-9120C. These APUs weren’t taken straight off the shelf, but rather revised to consume less power. This means they allow for longer battery life and produce less heat, making them a great choice for ultra-thin laptop designs. The trade-off is that you’ll see lower processor core speeds compared to AMD’s original APUs released in Q2 2017.

Here is a comparison between the modified “c” variants and AMD’s A-series APUs:

A6-9220 A6-9220C A4-9120 A4-9120C
Process node:

A6-9220:

28 nm

A6-9220C:

28 nm

A4-9120:

28 nm

A4-9120C:

28 nm

Processor cores:

A6-9220:

2

A6-9220C:

2

A4-9120:

2

A4-9120C:

2

Topics :

A6-9220:

2

A6-9220C:

2

A4-9120:

2

A4-9120C:

2

Basic speed :

A6-9220:

2.5 GHz

A6-9220C:

1.8 GHz

A4-9120:

2.2 GHz

A4-9120C:

1.6 GHz

Maximum speed:

A6-9220:

2.9 GHz

A6-9220C:

2.7 GHz

A4-9120:

2.5 GHz

A4-9120C:

2.4 GHz

Graphics cores:

A6-9220:

2

A6-9220C:

3

A4-9120:

2

A4-9120C:

3

Graphic shading:

A6-9220:

192

A6-9220C:

128

A4-9120:

128

A4-9120C:

128

Type of chart:

A6-9220:

Radeon R5

A6-9220C:

Radeon R5

A4-9120:

Radeon R3

A4-9120C:

Radeon R4

Basic speed :

A6-9220:

655MHz

A6-9220C:

720MHz

A4-9120:

655MHz

A4-9120C:

600MHz

Maximum TDP:

A6-9220:

15 watts

A6-9220C:

6 watts

A4-9120:

15 watts

A4-9120C:

6 watts

These modified APUs will power a 15.6-inch IPS-based display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080. Acer will offer versions with touch (CB315-2HT) and without touch (CB315-2H). You’ll also see up to 8GB of system memory and up to 32GB of storage. Since you’ll likely be consuming most of this storage with Android apps, Acer has added a microSD card reader to store music, videos, pictures, and other files.

Acer Chromebook 315

In addition to the card slot, the Chromebook 315 will include two USB Type-C (5 Gb / s) ports, two USB Type-A (5 Gb / s) ports, and a combo microphone / headphone jack. A full-size upward-facing speaker will reside on either side of the keyboard, delivering crisp sound compared to the annoying muffled sound typically heard with downward-facing speakers. The touch version will feature a backlit keyboard, while the non-touch version will not have a backlight. To complete the multimedia aspect, an HD webcam with an 88-degree field of view.

“The Chromebook 315 has a sleek IMR top cover and a palm rest that is durable and light enough to travel around the home or office,” the company said in a press release ahead of the show. “It can speed up demanding apps, while running multiple tabs and extensions, all for up to 10 hours of battery life.”

Acer Chromebook 315

Acer also notes that parents can easily manage the Chromebook 315 using Google’s Android Family Link app for mobile. With this free service enabled, kids can’t install apps and extensions from the Chrome Web Store, view violent and sexually explicit sites, or use incognito mode. Parents do not have to install anything on the Chromebook itself, as all restrictions are controlled through the child’s Google account.

Read: What is a Chromebook and what can it do?

Acer’s upcoming Chromebook will be 0.79 inches thick and weigh just 3.79 pounds. It will only be available during the first quarter of 2019 with a starting price of $ 280.

The new Acer Swift 7 Windows 10 laptop

In addition to its new Chromebook, Acer also announced a new Windows 10 laptop, the Swift 7. The 14-inch 1920 x 1080 touchscreen laptop has very thin edges, which allows it to have 92% screen-to-body ratio. The laptop’s body is also super slim at just 9.95mm and is incredibly light at just 1.96 pounds, as it is made of magnesium-lithium and magnesium-aluminum alloys. The screen is also covered with Corning Gorilla Glass 6 for additional protection.

Inside, the Acer Swift 7 has the 8th generation Intel Core i7-8500Y processor and can support 8GB or 16GB of RAM and 256GB or 512GB of onboard storage. The battery life is said to last up to 10 hours on a single charge. The laptop’s power button also doubles as a fingerprint reader so that you can log into Windows 10 when you turn on the laptop, through Windows Hello. It has a push-to-open camera for web chats and video recording that can be closed inside the laptop when not in use.

The Acer Swift 7 won’t be available for a while. It will go on sale in April in Europe from € 1,799, and also in China from € 14,999. It won’t be available in the US until May, starting at $ 1,699.


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