The Good Reasonable price; light weight; respectable battery life; integrated smart-card reader; curved keyboard.
The Bad Clunky, external floppy/DVD/CD-RW combo drive; short warranty and tech support.
The Bottom Line The thin-and-light TravelMate 364Eci is a nice travel system, but it becomes cumbersome when its combo drive is attached.
Acer TravelMate 364Eci (Pentium III-M 1.2 GHz
Acer designed the TravelMate 364Eci with travel-ready attributes such as a light, four-pound chassis; satisfying speed and battery life; cool 802.11b support; a comfortably curved keyboard; and convenient usability buttons. This mix works well, until the notebook's awkward, external floppy/DVD/CD-RW combo drive and short one-year warranty throw off the balance.Acer designed the TravelMate 364Eci with travel-ready attributes such as a light, four-pound chassis; satisfying speed and battery life; cool 802.11b support; a comfortably curved keyboard; and convenient usability buttons. This mix works well, until the notebook's awkward, external floppy/DVD/CD-RW combo drive and short one-year warranty throw off the balance.
Acer fit a lot of usability into the diminutive (11.5 by 9.2 by .8 inches), $2,499 TravelMate 364Eci. Engineers gave the notebook's keyboard a five-degree, smile-shaped curve, attempting to create a more comfortable typing experience. We liked the effect, although the spacebar was a bit too short for our taste. Acer also placed five convenient application quick-launch buttons above the keyboard, along with a tiny button that activates the 802.11b wireless connectivity and an LED that lights up when you have e-mail. A convenient scroll button lies in the center of the wrist rest beneath a standard touchpad, which is flanked by two mouse buttons.
For such a compact chassis, the TravelMate 364Eci offers a relatively big, 13.3-inch active-matrix screen with a native resolution of 1,024x768 and a lot of connectivity options. You get parallel, PS/2, VGA, docking, IEEE 1394, 56K modem, Ethernet, two USB ports, and one Type II PC Card slot. A smart-card slot with a built-in reader piggybacks the PC Card slot, allowing you to access password, credit-card, and other sensitive info you've stored on your smart cards.
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