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Acer debuts sub-$800 business PC

Acer America cuts prices by as much as 23 percent on its business notebooks and desktops, creating a sub-$800 business PC.

Acer America today cut prices by as much as 23 percent on its business notebooks and desktops, creating a sub-$800 business PC just days after the company said that low-cost systems have nearly doubled the company's retail sales in the second half of the year.

The price cuts mean that at least two Acer business desktops will sell for less than $800 while notebooks will sell for as low as $1,599.

One desktop model using a 133-MHz Pentium chip will now sell for $759 while a 166-MHz Pentium MMX-based system will sell for $782. The highest price computer in this family contains a 200-MHz Pentium MMX, and sells for a recommended price of $1,086.

The AcerPower line incorporates several of the manageability features, such as remote wake-up, promoted by Intel. It's targeted at corporate users looking for desktops that can be more readily controlled from a central server.

Meanwhile, the biggest prices drops come in the Extensa notebook line. The 670 CD was reduced 17.9 percent, from $2,799 to $2,299, while the 670CDT was cut from $3,499 to $2,699, a 22.9 percent discount. Both machines contain 166-MHz Pentium MMX processors. The 670CDT comes with a slightly larger hard drive and a 12.1-inch active-matrix screen.

Acer also took the ax to its 200-MHz and 233-MHz Pentium MMX notebooks, which were introduced in September. The TravelMate 7120T, which uses a 200-MHz Pentium MMX processor, was discounted 12.5 percent, from $3,999 to $3,499. The 7130T, which contains a 233-MHz Pentium MMX and a similar configuration, slid 15.2 percent, from $4,599 to $3,899.

The appeal of low price is not lost on Acer. On Friday, the company released a report stating that sales of its retail systems will double in the second half of the year due to price cuts.

"There is an untapped market of consumers who do not own home computers," said Michael Culver, vice president and general manger, consumer products division at Acer. "Consumers have responded, sending a clear message about their computing needs and the value they expect."