'Fastest Notebook Ever' Coming
MSI has some mighty boasts for CES 2011. They've just sent out a press release announcing their presence at the show and confirming that it will include the GT680. The manufacturer claims that this new flagship gaming machine is the 'fastest notebook computer on the planet'. It certainly looks slick, with plenty of shiny LEDs to make it look future-y. And kill the battery.
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The GT680 scored an astounding 18,162 points on the PC MARK Vantage test. With a quad-core Intel CPU, GeForce graphics and up to 16 GB of DDR3 RAM, it isn't hard to see why. For power freaks, there's even a "Turbo" button above the keyboard that boosts both CPU and GPU performance.
MSI also has new F and C series multimedia netbooks, as well as the U270 and U160DX models of X-Slim netbooks. These new machines come with MSI i-Charger technology, which is billed as increasing recharge efficiency by putting more power through the USB ports. At least some of these notebooks will have USB 3.0 capability.
Returning to CES with MSI this year are the new MSI WindPads, which we covered earlier today. These will be 10.1" slates with Windows 7 and Android, respectively. Both models have G-Sensors, an ALS light sensor and WiFi.
This announcement puts MSI head-to-head with Acer, who also has a huge portfolio of stylish next-gen devices heading to CES. While MSI went for raw power with the GT680, Acer dressed to impress with their dual-screen Iconia. Both of these devices will tempt the same category of consumers: rich nerds with a fetish for sweet new tech.
Acer also went on a bit of a tablet spree. MSI bet on one screen size, while Acer has their bases covered with 4.8", 7" and 10.1" units. Both manufacturers have Windows 7 slates due out, but the real competition here is going to be between the Android slates. Both 10.1" units look to have similar features: Tegra 2, Android 3.0, probably between 16 GB and 32 GB of storage. In other words, they'll be a lot like Motorola's mystery tablet.
As nice as MSI's offerings look, I think Acer's offerings will better represent consumer needs in 2011. Tablet computing shows every sign of getting Huge over the next few months, and Acer has four devices coming to CES that will take advantage of that. They've spent the last year watching the iPad and waiting. HP, the only larger PC supplier in the world, already missed their shot to capture an early slice of the market. Acer won't make the same mistakes.