IFA 2016: Behold the world’s first curved laptop

In Laptops by Alora Uy GuerreroLeave a Comment

Taiwanese manufacturer Acer seems to have pulled out all the stops for the gaming laptop that it just unveiled at this year’s IFA consumer-electronics show in Berlin, Germany. Called the Acer Predator 21X, the notebook will go down in history as the world’s first laptop with a curved screen, if you’ve been searching for gaming laptops and hardware to maximise your gaming experience then look no more your search is over.

It’s not just that. The display size is unconventional. Notebook screens do not typically go beyond 18 inches, but the Predator 21X’s measures 21 inches diagonally. Unfortunately, the resolution’s just 2560 x 1080, not 4K, but at least the screen supports Nvidia G-Sync.

In case you didn’t know, G-Sync technology takes your gaming experience to the next level by eliminating display stutter and tearing, among others. CNET has this great video that compares a traditional monitor with one that’s G-Sync-enabled.

See the difference?

The Acer Predator 21X’s curved screen is powered by not one, but two Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 GPUs. It’s like putting two desktop-grade graphics cards into your notebook. Let that sink in for a bit. That would run Borderlands 3 PC on max settings without breaking a sweat. No wonder the 21X is huge… and heavy. Acer says it weighs 8 kilos or 17.6 pounds. Goodness, bringing it is like carrying eight — more like 8.28 — MacBooks. If that isn’t heavy for you, we don’t know what is.

The curved laptop weighs 8 kilos or 17.6 pounds. Bringing it is like carrying eight — more like 8.28 — MacBooks.

Must-watch preview video of the Acer Predator 21X

The Predator 21X makes use of a full-sized, illuminated mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX switches. Mechanical keyboards have been known to minimize typos, withstand heavy use, and provide better audible and tactile feedback, hence their popularity especially among gamers. The numeric keypad on the right can be can be flipped over to become a touchpad.

On top is a camera with eye-tracking technology developed by Swedish firm Tobii, so you can aim at your target by just looking at it, for one. This is a nice idea, but the problem is only a few titles support the technology. Chances are this feature will be left unused for the most part. A bummer, really.

You’re also looking at the recently announced seventh-generation Kaby Lake Intel Core processor and two power supplies driving this monster and five system fans and eight heat pipes cooling it. Four speakers and two subwoofers take care of audio, and 64GB of memory and five drives can be used at a time for your storage needs.

The Acer Predator 21X's innards.

The Acer Predator 21X’s innards.

The Acer Predator 21X is a beast indeed. Its price is, as well. The company’s head in Europe informed CNET that it will command a price of approximately $5,000 or around P235,000 when it becomes available in the first quarter of 2017. For that amount, we can probably buy four high-end gaming desktops. With the 21X’s hefty weight, the ease of having to carry a laptop just went down the drain, anyway.

My additional take: We can call the Predator 21X a marketing gimmick all we want, but that’s probably what Acer wants — for the company to be on top of mind of gamers. I believe the Acer that we saw earlier is a manufacturer that’s showing its prowess. “Hey, look at us, we have pushed the boundaries in gaming laptops. Your turn, (insert other brand here). Show us what you can do.” Will this Predator be a commercial success? Maybe not. And Acer probably doesn’t mind either. However, it does succeed in preying on taking over tech headlines today.

The Acer that we saw earlier is a manufacturer that’s showing its prowess. ‘Hey, look at us, we have pushed the boundaries in gaming laptops. Your turn, (insert other brand here). Show us what you can do.’

My partner Ramon Lopez’s take: You know how gamers tend to refer to their gaming rig as their “baby”? Well, carrying the Predator 21X around is like having three babies swinging from your arms. It’s laughably thick, too, like the stack of magazines that might sit on your living-room floor. And did we mention it costs an eye-watering $5,000? But hey, it made you look, didn’t it? So I guess there’s some merit in showing it off in Berlin, even if Acer only moves tens of these “babies.” I’m sure these will work a treat when interacting with hostiserver servers! Not much will get in the way of this beast.

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Alora Uy Guerrero

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Editor-in-chief: Alora Uy Guerrero has 22 years of experience as an editor for print and digital publications such as Yahoo. She took time off journalism to manage OPPO’s digital-marketing campaigns. When not busy with her babies, she’s working on Revü, a passion project — or probably traveling or obsessing over her favorite bands, movies, TV shows, and basketball teams.