Acer widens its horizons

Notebook sales no longer a main focus

Acer Computer, the world's fourth-largest computer maker, is transforming itself into a "mobile computing firm" to maintain sales revenue amid a sluggish notebook market.

Nitipat: Mobile computing is big now

Notebook sales in Thailand are expected to contract by 5% this year from 2 million units sold last year in a market valued at 36 billion baht.

Nitipat Praweenwongwuthi, the senior marketing manager, said Acer's focus will be high-growth mobile computing areas including tablets, smartphones and hybrid devices.

Hybrid touch-based devices combine tablet functions with the high performance of notebooks to attract users away from smartphones and tablets.

Acer leads the notebook market in Thailand with a 30% share.

Mr Nitipat said prices of hybrid notebooks will likely fall sharply to 20,000 baht this year from 30,000-40,000 baht.

Acer will roll out its flagship hybrid notebook next month, with four more models by June.

Hybrid notebook sales are forecast to make up 15% of Thailand's notebook sales this year, rising to 50% in 2014, he said.

Last year, hybrid sales accounted for only 1% of the total, said Mr Nitipat.

He said Acer will also focus on educational tablets priced below 5,000 baht, which make up 70% of the market.

Another focus will be smartphones priced below 10,000 baht, which account for 55% of the overall smartphone market.

Acer allocated half of this year's 300-million-baht marketing budget to promote its mobile computing and hybrid devices.

It expects to maintain sales revenue at 13 billion baht this year thanks to its new strategy.

About the author

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Writer: Suchit Leesa-nguansuk
Position: Senior Reporter