Tue, Jul 27, 2004 - Page 10 News List

Acer, BenQ roll out laptop models

HIGH HOPES Intending to make a big splash at the computer show that begins on Thursday in Taipei, two leading laptop makers are trotting out their new wares

By Amber Chung  /  STAFF REPORTER

Models pose with new Acer notebooks.


In a bid to convince consumers to open their wallets at the forthcoming Taipei Computer Applications Show, the nation's leading portable computer vendors, Acer Inc and BenQ Corp (明基電通), rolled out new models yesterday.

"The launch of new laptops is expected to spur the market ? in addition to price cuts from 10 percent to 25 percent of our other notebook models in the show," said Danny Yao (姚鴻州), managing director of BenQ Asia Pacific Corp (明基亞太), BenQ's marketing arm.

"We hoped to sell a total of between 4,000 units and 5,000 units both in the show and through distribution channels during the five-day exhibition," Yao said.

BenQ yesterday rolled out a new model of notebook, the Joybook 7000, which the vendor said is the world's first 14-inch wide-screen product and which will hit the market during the computer show, which is set to kick off on Thursday.

The new all-in-one models, priced between NT$58,800 and NT$70,800 each, are equipped with Intel Corp's latest Dothan-platform central processing units (CPUs) and weigh under 2kg, the company said.

Consumers can get discounts of between NT$3,000 and NT$4,000 each plus free set-up boxes if they purchase the new products during the show, Yao said.

BenQ plans to ship 80,000 laptops in Taiwan in the second half of the year, though it sold less than 30,000 in the first half.

Admitting that the goal may be tough to achieve, the company is still bullish about achieving an increase of up to 50 percent in shipments in the second half, the traditional peak season, Yao said.

BenQ aims to become one of the nation's top three vendors by the end of the year, which will require the company to ship 8,000 laptops per month, Yao said.

Another heavyweight player, Acer Inc, launched four new notebook computer models yesterday.

The new units cost the world's fifth-largest vendor US$1.5 million for exterior design and US$6 million for new steel molds.

The new models, such as the 2kg all-in-one Travelmate 3200, equipped with the Dothan 715 CPU (1.5GHz) and a 14.1-inch screen and priced at NT$52,900, will also hit the market during the exhibition.

"New design and new technology, rather than price reduction, are our primary appeal for consumers," said Calvin Chang (張敬仁), Acer's marketing vice president for its Taiwan and Greater China operations.

The company hopes the new products will boost sales to 15,000 units for next month alone, around 35 percent of which would be created during the show, Chang said.

Acer plans to spend NT$50 million on advertising in public places like MRT stations and movie theaters and on television commercials this month and next in a bid to promote its new products and help it reach its goal of selling around 120,000 units this year, the company said.

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