After some years away, Acer is taking a second roll of the dice on the Windows Phone OS with a variant of its entry-level Z220 handset.
The first Windows 8.1 phone from Acer embraces the Windows ecosystem just ahead of the Windows 10 roll-out. Being an entry-level handset, re-entering the Windows fold at this critical period could prove to be a wise move for the company and help it to attract a new audience. It’s certainly piqued our curiosity.
Acer Liquid M220 Release Date and Pricing
The Acer Liquid Jade Z will be available to purchase from April through selected EMEA retailers in Mystic Black and Pure White, starting at €79.
SEE ALSO: Samsung Galaxy S6 hands-on
Sporting a 4-inch WVGA (480 x 800 pixels) display, the compact M220 features a textured body, inspired by Thai Silk. In the hand the texture adds some welcome grip and, along with the jagged silver trim that wraps around the phone’s edges, it looks and feels more expensive than it is.
The Liquid M220 has a 5-megapixel main camera with an 89-degree lens and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera. For the money, there’s little to complain about and for basic snapshots, both cameras should perform well enough in good light.
Windows 8.1 looks good on the Liquid M220, even though it's the smallest device I’ve seen it running on. In terms of power, the phone runs on a 1.2GHz dual-core processor with 512MB RAM which isn’t much, but for standard phone apps and usage, it appeared to run smoothly. The internal memory is only 4GB, but this can be extended using the microSD slot up to 32GB.
SEE ALSO: Acer Liquid Jade Z hands-on
The phone’s 1,300mAh battery isn’t particularly big, but it's only powering a small device, so you should still get well over a day’s regular use from it.
Of course being a Windows phone, the Liquid M220 has access to tools such as OneDrive and comes with 15GB of cloud storage. Acer has also confirmed that the phone will be upgradeable to Windows 10 towards the end of 2015, which is good to know.
This phone, in hardware terms, isn’t a massive deal, although it does offer some good functionality at an affordable price point. The Acer Liquid M220 is another decent device that offers entry-level users a way into the Windows ecosystem.
The interesting thing is the inclusion of a Windows Phone device in Acer’s line-up. Acer is getting ready for Windows 10 and letting us decide which platform suits our needs. You could say Acer's hedging its bets, but it'll be the one laughing if Win 10 takes off.
When Windows 10 launches, we hope to see a high-end Acer phone running it.