The company is already heavily promoting Linux for its low cost ultra-portable netbook range out later this year, but senior staff have said that Acer will also push Linux on its laptops.
Acer has already started selling Linux in its Media PC business but this should now spread, according to Gianpiero Morbello, vice president of marketing and brand at Acer.
"We have shifted towards Linux because of Microsoft," he said. "Microsoft has a lot of power and it is going to be difficult, but we will be working hard to develop the Linux market."
Acer sees two killer apps with Linux on computers: operation and cost. Its flavour of Linux will boot in 15 seconds compared to minutes for Windows, and the open source operating system can extend battery life from five to seven hours.
At the same time, the company expects that the price differential of Linux will make the offering attractive for consumers at the low-cost end of the market.
"Microsoft's operating system typically costs around £50 per unit," said David Drummond, UK managing director at Acer. "On a £1,000 PC that is peanuts, but on a £200 computer it is a major issue."
Acer bets big on Linux
By Iain Thomson on Jun 5, 2008 8:08AM