Acer Jumps Into Tablet Fray

As the rise of tablet computers threaten its laptop business, computer giant Acer Inc. unveiled plans to begin selling tablets that run either Microsoft Corp. and Google Inc. software.

The company said Tuesday it will release three tablets next year, with screens from 7 inches to 10.1 inches. The first tablets, based on Microsoft’s Windows platform, will be released in February. The company will also release tablets using Google’s Android platform in April. Pricing wasn’t disclosed.

Acer is the latest PC maker to join the tablet bandwagon after Apple Inc.’s iPad, released in April, attracted strong consumer demand. Samsung Electronics Co. has begun selling a Google-based tablet with a 7-inch screen, and BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd. and Hewlett-Packard Co. have recently announced plans to introduce tablets to compete with Apple’s product.

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