Acer ships first Chromebooks with Intel's Core i3 chip

The Chromebooks start at $350

Acer C720 Chromebook

Acer C720 Chromebook

Acer is cranking up the speed of Chromebooks with the first models featuring Intel's Core i3 processor.

The two Acer C720 Chromebooks have 11.6-inch screens and Intel's Core i3-40005U processor based on Haswell microarchitecture. The Acer C720 Chromebook model with 2GB of memory has a $349.99 price tag and a model with 4GB of memory is $379.99.

The models are available in the U.S. and Canada. Acer didn't provide information worldwide availability.

The C720 Chromebook will offer about 8.5 hours of battery life, Acer said in a statement. Other features include 32GB of storage, a webcam, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, an HDMI connector, USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports.

The screens display images at a 1366 x 768 pixel resolution.

Chromebooks have until now used either low-power Intel or ARM processors, which have so far been considered adequate for those who do most of their computing on the Internet. But more Chromebook applications can be used offline.

The Core i3 chip boosts video and application performance. Dell has also said it would offer a Chromebook with a Core i3 processor.

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com

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