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[Review] Acer Aspire Switch 10 E SW3-013-1520 a budget two in one

The Pros: 12 hour battery life, 64 GB SSD, lightweight, a/b/g/n WiFi, low price point.
The Cons: 2 GB of RAM, consumer oriented.

There's no denying that tablets came to stay. However, as much as Steve Jobs insisted that we didn't need anything more than a tablet to replace a PC it seems that such a statement might've been ahead of its time.

Even today, 6 years after the debut of the first iPad, it still seems like using "just a tablet" is cutting it a bit short. It's with that in mind that hybrids came to play and one of the most attractive hybrids in the current market is the Acer Aspire Switch 10 E SW3-013-1520.

Strategically priced, Acer's new two in one convertible arrives with 64GB of internal storage, a magnetic detachable keyboard and Intel's very own Cherry Trail CPU. No, it's not for everyone, but for users on the go looking for an ultraportable and affordable secondary laptop it's a great option.

Acer Aspire Switch 10 E SW3-013-1520 In depth review

Let's talk design

If there's one thing that the SW3-013-1520 could've improved upon that's its design. No offense but it's got the design of a 2011 hybrid whilst launching in early 2016. Fortunately for us, it has the internals and the pricing of a 2016 hybrid.

The display is a 10.1 inch WXGA IPS LED screen with a 1280 by 800 pixel resolution (try saying that three times fast). It's an adequate display, especially considering the size of the screen and all in all it gets the job done which is what we're looking for. 

The display in and of itself is the hybrid PC, with the keyboard storing just that; the keyboard. There's no alternative hard drive storage hidden on the keyboard but rather a magnetic base where we can comfortably attach the keyboard to the tablet. There are variants where the keyboard also holds a storage unit but this isn't one of those units.

As for the weight, it's one of its most compelling features, weighing a measly 1.39 pounds when you just use the tablet and a little bit over 2.6 pounds when you're latching on both tablet and keyboard. That's roughly half the weight of most entry level 15 inch laptops.

What's performance like?

As we mentioned previously, Acer's new two in one comes equipped with an Intel Atom Z3735F quad core processor that works at a base speed of 1.33 GHz and can stretch out to a maximum 1.83 GHz through turboboost. This isn't the most powerful processor in the market but it's good enough for consumer tasks.

To accompany the processor we've got 2GB of DDR3L RAM working at 1333 MHz. It's enough RAM to run a couple of apps at a time on Windows 10 but I wouldn't really stretch my luck expecting it to handle intensive multitasking.

It's no secret that hybrids aren't the best when it comes down to performance and all in all they can't hold a candle to most mid level laptops. That said, for consumer purposes, the Acer Aspire Switch 10 E SW3-013-1520 is well off and if you're intention is to use it to surf the web, edit documents on the fly, watch videos and talk to friends then you're pretty much covered. If you're intentions are to go beyond these basic computing tasks then we'd recommend looking at a higher end model.

SSD storage and 12 hour battery life

There are a few reasons why people go down the two in one route: 1) Portability, 2)Fast Storage and 3) Lengthy battery life. In the case of Acer's Aspire Switch E model we've got 64GB of SSD storage onboard and a microSD card reader to expand on that storage easily. 

Overall, while it's true that Windows 10 will eat up roughly half the available storage, as a portable device i'd rather it have fast and lightweight storage over a heavy and much slower HDD unit.

Battery life is the other big bonus on this two in one with a two cell battery that, according to Acer, can deliver up to 12 hours of "juice" without being plugged in. Considering you can't really talk about a two in one with bad battery life Acer did a pretty good job on this one.

Set of cameras and connectivity options

Since we're not talking about a conventional laptop but rather a tablet with a detachable keyboard, the Acer Aspire Switch 10 E SW3-013-1520 has two cameras, a front facing two megapixel camera for video chatting and a rear end camera with the same resolution in case you wanna grab a quick pic.

Finally, moving on to the connectivity, we've got an a/b/g/n WiFi antena, Bluetooth support, a USB 2.0 port on the keyboard a microUSB 2.0 port on the tablet, a micro HDMI port on the dock and a two in one audio combo on the tablet.

Final thoughts and opinions

Overall, there's not much more left to say on this review of the Acer Aspire Switch 10 E SW3-013-1520. It's not the best two in one on the market but it offers a good experience at a competitive price. If you know what you're paying for you're not likely to be disappointed. 

As a consumer tablet with a long lasting battery life and a decent set of components that will allow you to get some work done on the fly it's a pretty good deal. 


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