Rumour: Acer to launch Wii-style PC console

Rumour: Acer to launch Wii-style PC console

The leaked slides say that the Hornet's gamepad can be used as both an "air mouse" and a "home media controller".

Whatever you think of Nintendo’s diminutive Wii console, you can’t deny that the idea of a motion-sensing game controller has been enormously successful for the company. It’s already inspired numerous derivatives too, from the Asus Eee Stick, to the Logitech MX Air, and now Acer looks like it’s going to get in on the wand-waving action with a small form factor PC called the Hornet that comes with a familiar-looking gamepad controller.

Donanimhaber has just leaked some slides detailing the Hornet, which the site says will be based on Nvidia’s Ion platform. In the slides, the device is shown to come with a game controller that can also act as an “air mouse” and “home media controller.”

Unlike the Wii, the Hornet will also have an HDMI output according to the presentation, and it will also have the ability to play various PC games. However, given that the Ion GPU only has 16 stream processors, it won’t be able to play them at particularly high settings.

Even so, the ability to playback HD movies as well as functioning as a PC and games machine would make the Hornet quite a versatile, low-budget machine, especially if it genuinely only costs “couple hundreds [sic] dollars” as it says in the presentation.

Acer was unable to comment on the slides, but did say that the company would be launching some new product designs in Amsterdam in April. Whether the Hornet will be among them is as yet unconfirmed, but the company has previously expressed an interest in building Ion-based products in the second half of this year.

In a recent interview with Laptopmag, Acer’s vice president of product marketing, Sumit Agnihotry, commented on Nvidia’s Ion platform, saying that “the benefits are great, including the ability to play back high def content. You will see us looking at this technology much closer in our second half products.”

Nvidia wouldn’t confirm whether the Hornet would definitely feature an Ion motherboard, saying that we would have to ask Acer, but the lack of any kind of denial makes it look as though Acer has an Ion-based PC in the works.

Could an Ion-based PC with a motion-sensing controller be a hit for Acer, or would it come across as a “me too” device? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.


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Xir 26th February 2009, 16:09 Quote
Whatever you think of Nintendo’s diminutive Wii console

Apart from a Wii with 2 controlers (and yes, it's essentially a multiplayer device) costing over 300 euro's...which is more than an Xbox360.
I still like it (but will buy second hand....eventually)

For the Acer, it would come down to pricepoint and ease of use...HTPC anyone?
ChaosDefinesOrder 26th February 2009, 16:10 Quote
But....but...bu-bu but Intel said that no-one was interested in Ion, they can't be proved wrong!

haha Intel propaganda machine BURNED by this announcement!
lewchenko 26th February 2009, 17:17 Quote
I remember when Sky launched their game service. You could press the red button and play 'frogger' or 'darts' etc. The ION hardware may *just* pip my Sky box here in terms of raw performance LOL !

Obviously I exaggerate for effect here, but seriously... my now deceased 5 year old Pentium M 1.6Ghz notebook was more powerful than the atom cpu (so the benchmarks tell me).

I suppose the GPU will be doing all the hard work though.
nicae 26th February 2009, 19:22 Quote
Isn't the Wii just that? A weak PC with an exclusive controller?
The question is how much plug-n-play will it be? That's essential for non-hardcores. Will they have to navigate through the intimidating desktop?! :o
freedom810 27th February 2009, 21:41 Quote
Bloodie hell, been off the net for 2 days come back and Acer are thinking of joining the gaming industry?! :o
DougEdey 27th February 2009, 21:46 Quote
Depending on the price (if it's cheaper than a media center) I can imagine it being quickly hacked :D
Timmy_the_tortoise 28th February 2009, 13:20 Quote
I'll stick with my standard PC, thanks.
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