Cape Town - Computer maker Acer has thrown down the gauntlet with a new smartphone that takes direct aim at some of the top global manufacturers.
The company, better known in SA for its laptops and tablets, announced the launch of a Liquid Jade S smartphone with an octa-core processor.
The Mediatek 64-bit unit features eight processor units and is more than double the speed of traditional quad core processors found in popular smartphones.
The smartphone features a 12.7cm (5 inch) screen and 13 megapixel main camera.
As smartphone makers becomes more commoditised, manufacturers are racing to differentiate their devices from a crowd of mainly Android powered gadgets.
While Samsung, Sony, HTC and LG are well-established brands, lower cost units from Huawei, Hisense, Lenovo and Xiaomi are beginning to make their impact felt, especially where consumer are price sensitive.
Gartner numbers indicate that handset manufactures targeting the lower price segment have seen success.
"Huawei smartphone sales grew 85.3% in the fourth quarter of 2013 to maintain the No 3 spot year over year. Huawei has moved quickly to align its organisation to focus on the global market. Huawei's overseas expansion delivered strong results in the fourth quarter of 2013, with growth in the Middle East and Africa, Asia/Pacific, Latin America and Europe," said Anshul Gupta, principal research analyst at Gartner.
The new Acer appears aimed at big brands for power bragging rights, and it is expected to go on sale in SA for around R4 200 in February.
Acer has had some success with the Liquid series, though in SA, most major mobile operators have not ranged the devices which have sported dual SIM capability.
Instead, dual SIM devices have been offered on the Orange online store as well as from retailers like Pick n Pay, Game and Makro.
The Liquid Jade S smartphone supports high speed LTE (Long Term Evolution) networks and weighs in at 116g.
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