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Acer Aspire Netbook sports new Atom chip

Company updates its Aspire One lineup with a new Netbook powered by Intel's N450 Atom processor, offering faster performance and boosting battery life to 10 hours.

Acer Aspire One AO532h
Acer Aspire One AO532h

Acer has unveiled the latest entry to its hot Aspire One Netbook line--this one powered by Intel's new N450 Atom processor.

The newly-launched Acer Aspire One AO532h, driven by Intel's next-gen N450 chip, is designed to offer better performance and longer battery life than older Netbooks. Acer claims the new machine can last up to 8 hours with the standard 6-cell Li-ion (4400 mAh) battery or 10 hours with a high-density 6-cell (5600 mAh) battery.

The N450 processor frees up space by integrating the graphics processor onto the CPU, so Netbooks can be smaller and thinner. The Aspire One AO532h comes in just under an inch thick and weighs a bit over 2.5 pounds while sporting a 10.1-inch screen, according to Acer's specs.

The new Netbook comes with 1GB of DDR2 RAM, a 160GB SATA hard drive, a 10/100 Ethernet port, 802.11b/g/Draft-N Wi-Fi, a media card reader, and a Webcam. Acer also includes a multi-gesture touch pad that lets you use glide, pinch, and swirl your fingers to more easily move around the screen. The keyboard is 93 percent standard size, according to Acer, so it should be less cramped than many other Netbook keyboards.

Like most Netbooks, the AO532h comes with Windows 7 Starter Edition, which is the lowest cost but least robust edition of Windows 7. Starting at $299, the AO532h is expected to be available sometime this month.

The full specs listed by Acer for the Aspire One AO532h:

  • Intel Atom Processor N450 (1.66GHz, 512KB L2 cache, 667MHz FSB)
  • 10.1" WSVGA Acer CrystalBrite LED-backlit Display
  • Mobile Intel NM10 Express Chipset
  • Integrated Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 3150
  • 1024MB DDR2 667MHz Memory
  • 160GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive
  • Multi-in-1 Digital Media Card Reader
  • Acer InviLink Nplify 802.11b/g/Draft-N Wi-Fi CERTIFIED
  • 10/100 Fast Ethernet LAN (RJ-45)
  • Built-in Webcam
  • Two Built-in Stereo Speakers
  • Multi-Gesture Touchpad
  • 3 - USB 2.0 Ports
  • 6-cell Li-ion Battery (4400 mAh)
  • 2.76 lbs. | 1.25 kg
  • 10.17" (W) x7.28" (D) x .99" (H)
  • Windows 7 Starter
  • Three stylish colors: Onyx Blue, Garnet Red and Silver Matrix
  • MSRP: $299.99

Acer now joins the ranks of several other Netbook makers by unveiling new machines running the N450 Atom. In December, Asus debuted its Eee PC 1005PE. HP's "unannounced" Mini 210 Netbook then hit the news, followed by models from Toshiba and Gateway. Many of these companies will be showing off their latest N450-powered Netbooks when CES launches in Las Vegas this week.