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Acer Iconia W510 – Connectivity, Dock, Usability

Ardjuna Seghers

By Ardjuna Seghers



Our Score:


Acer Iconia W510 – Connectivity and Buttons

For such a small tablet, the Acer Iconia W510 sure packs in those connections. It has a headphone/microphone jack on its top, just beside the rotation-lock switch and power button.

On the right just under a nice little volume rocker you’ll find a micro HDMI port for hooking up to your monitor or telly, microUSB for connecting peripherals and storage, and MicroSD to expand internal memory and read cards from other mobile devices. In a nice touch, Acer includes a micro to full-size USB adapter.

At the tablet’s bottom, we have the clasps that securely connect it to the dock and a proprietary charging port, which can be used as a second USB port with an optional adapter. Wireless duties are managed by Wi-Fi N, Bluetooth 4.0 and NFC, though unlike the Samsung Ativ Smart PC there’s no option for mobile broadband yet (an Acer Iconia W510 with 4G has been rumoured for later this year).

The dock is rather sparse on ports. It replicates the power charging port and gives you a single full-size USB port, and that’s it. We would really have liked to see a full-size SD card reader, but so far the HP Envy x2 is the only Atom convertible we’ve come across to offer one…

Acer Iconia W510 - Docking

In a system that’s very similar to that found on other detachable convertibles, the W510 snaps into the dock’s protruding hinge very securely. To release is again, there’s a small slider switch on the hinge just above the keyboard. The hinge is very sturdy and almost stiff, but that’s no bad thing.

However, what makes the W510 stand out from the Windows 8 detachable crowd is that Acer takes things a step further than rivals. Where they only let you turn their tablets into ‘laptops’, the Iconia W510 takes a leaf from the Lenovo Yoga in letting you twist the base all the way round so that the keyboard is on the underside at the ‘tablet’s’ rear. This is great when using the base as a stand on a cramped train/bus table where you may not have room to put the tab into traditional ‘laptop mode’.

With our retail review sample, we did find that once - after flipping the keyboard base around to put the ‘laptop’ into ‘presentation mode’ - the ports on the dock became inactive and remained so till a reset.

Acer Iconia W510 – Keyboard and Typing, Touchpad

As one might have suspected from its smaller 10-inch size, the keyboard on the W510’s dock doesn’t hold up well compared to the implementations found on its 11.6-inch rivals. Keys offer a nice, crisp action so we have no complaints with feedback, but they’re too small to make for comfortable typing and layout is not great (especially if you’re a right-shifter, as it’s far too easy to hit the up-arrow key).

Mind you, if you had no problems typing on an Asus Transformer then you’ll get on just fine with the W510. However, we can’t understand why, when Logitech can manage to make a perfectly comfortable keyboard in even less physical space with its Ultrathin Keyboard Cover for iPad, other manufactures with years of experience can’t manage the same.

Likewise, the ‘buttonless’ touchpad is on the small side, and its integrated buttons are far too stiff to be comfy for long-term use. It’s not as big an issue with a convertible tablet compared to a laptop/netbook as you can usually touch the screen instead, but still something rivals manage better.

Peter Edwards

February 2, 2013, 11:58 am

Windows Tabs need another generation or two before they are buy.

This one needs better CPU/GPU (Tegra 4?), The Pro machines need their weight reduced anything over 600g is too much weight.


February 28, 2013, 5:12 am

Peter E... you just make me laugh. I would be happy to know that you do make a living out of this.... because otherwise it just does not make sence.


March 11, 2013, 5:33 pm

Well sounds otherwise fine but the advantage of having a CPU like atom is that it stays cool, the system is compact and MOST IMPORTANTLY - it runs FULL windows x86. I don't want a tablet with a mobile OS. I'd sure love a fanless Core i5/i3 tablet with compact size and low weight.

Daniel Kerr

March 23, 2013, 10:28 am

Trust me, a fanless i5 or even i3 will be very hot without a fan...


March 23, 2013, 10:43 am

Well don't skip the "compact size and low weight" part. That was the most important thing. A fan running on a tablet doesn't sound good to me, I want my tablet to be an actual tablet that's 100% passive. And now I've got W510 and I'm pretty happy with it :).

Tri Haryadi

April 22, 2013, 11:47 am

which one do you choose, having this Iconia W510 or a notebook?

Petar Tenev

April 22, 2013, 12:08 pm

If this Acer had a GPS sensor built in,i'd love to use it as a Navigation System in my car :) ...Any creativeness here ... plsss


August 19, 2013, 6:59 am

I have been using Acer Iconia w510 for a couple of weeks now, here is my pros and cons list:

- Very light!
- No fan. It does get a bit hot in the upper right corner sometimes, but not too hot for comfort.
- For the most time feels surprisingly smooth and responsive considering it is powered by a relatively slow Atom processor.
- Great battery life.
- Supports up to 64GB micro SD. This is crucial, as the device only comes with at max 64 GB SSD, but with an additional 64GB slow storage space for less frequently accessed files it works.

- Proprietary charging cable. I would much rather have a micro USB charger, like a lot of my other tech toys. Then I would not have to deal with one more cable.
- Micro USB connector is inconvenient. I would much rather have a regular size USB port. Acer do include an micro USB to USB convertor, yet another cable to deal with though.
- I do not like the design much. The white rim looks like something they added at the last minute. I would prefer a pure black design, no black, white, silver mixed together in a practical but ugly way.
- The PowerVR graphics chip is not compatible with a lot of 3D applications, like games. I do not mind it being slow, this is not a gaming machine after all, but it would be nice to be able to run some older games that should work well without having them simply crash because of some driver problem.
- Build quality a bit flimsy. You can actually bend the whole thing quite easily. But, the plastic helps keep the weight down, so this is a minor issue I think.

All in all, I would say I am happy with it though. Windows 8 works very well with a tablet, provides you so much freedom. I will never touch my Android/iOS tablets again! And although there is still much left to be desired, it is probably the Windows 8 tablet on the market which gives the most value for your money right now.

I would give this an overall 8/10 based on value for money.


August 19, 2013, 7:14 am

Both :)


September 11, 2013, 7:24 pm

Buy a gps with bluetooth connection or usb, and you will be in business ;-)


October 30, 2013, 1:55 am

I love my W510! I've had it since about a week after they released, and probably use it more than I do my high performance desktop. I bought it for college, and can often use it for all my classes, in between as well, keep my iPhone charged with it, and still not need to charge it for 2-3 days. It's competent with plenty of games as well, I've been playing Blizzards new beta Hearthstone on it ever since they passed out keys for it. Check it out!



March 12, 2014, 6:49 pm

I have 2 clients who purchased Acer W510 Iconia last year, May and June 2013 to be exact. This is NOT a very good product, Acer products in total are crap.

For client#1, purchased in for CAD$660, we need to send the tablet back for repair last Dec. 2013 because Windows 8 unable to boot. Through my client's shipping expense, It was repaired after 10 days. Unfortunately, just last March 7th, the same tablet won't power-on. We demanded Acer to REPLACE THE TABLET because for less than a year, it became defective twice. Tablet replacement was not approved by Acer.

I WILL NEVER EVER BUY AND RECOMMEND ANY OF ACER PRODUCTS AGAIN, you will loose a lot of customer for this.


March 12, 2014, 6:52 pm


For client#2, purchased in June 2013. December, the tablet won't power ON. Unfortunately, she lost the box, SNID, and receipt, and the Acer Customer Desk cannot help her.

Again.....I WILL NEVER EVER BUY AND RECOMMEND ANY OF ACER PRODUCTS AGAIN, you will loose a lot of customers for this.

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