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Acer: No, tablets will not be replacing netbooks

Following up on widely-reported comments from a Taiwan-based sales manager, computer maker Acer wants to assure customers (and potential customers) that the company does not plan to phase out netbook computers in favor of tablets. According to the company, netbooks will very much be part of Acer’s product mix, although the company is definitely stepping into new mobile form factors, including tablets.

“Acer recognizes that the computer market is changing. As PCs are no longer only used to create content but are more and more becoming consumption tools, new devices and new form factors are appearing,” the company wrote in a statement distributed via email. “This means the range of devices available to users is getting wider and tablets are just another piece of the mosaic. Therefore, they will find their space next to netbooks and notebooks.”

The company statement follows on the heels of comments from Acer’s Taiwan sales manager Lu Bing-hsian, who indicated he believed the company would eventually phase out netbooks in favor of tablet devices. Although there’s no denying tablets are the the hottest thing in the computing market right now—with every computer manufacturer scrambling to launch an “iPad killer”—many are skeptical the tablet form factor is capable of replacing netbooks and traditional notebooks, particularly for text- and writing-intensive tasks.

Acer also took a moment to address Lu Bing-hsian’s comments that tablets based on Intel’s Sandy Bridge processor line were due to launch by mid-2011: although Acer says it has 10- and 7-inch Android devices coming to market, the company does not currently have plans for devices based on Intel’s Sandy Bridge architecture.

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