Acer is officially back in the Windows Phone game. Announced this morning at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, the Liquid M220 is the Taiwanese manufacturers very first Windows Phone 8.1 device. Better still, alongside introducing the device, Acer is announcing it's commitment to upgrading it to Windows 10 down the line.
The phone is announced alongside the Liquid Leap+ smartband which is fully compatible with Windows Phone 8.1. The phone is targeted at the budget end of the market, and will be available in April in the EMEA region for just €79.
So, it's a return at the low-end, but a return nevertheless and a welcome one at that. Acer hasn't made a Windows Phone for many a year now, going right back to the Windows Phone 7 days for its last effort. So, what about the new one. Here's what we're looking at spec wise:
- 4-inch, 480x800 resolution display
- 1.2Ghz dual-core CPU
- 5MP rear camera with auto focus and flash
- 2MP front facing camera
- 4GB on board storage with microSD card expansion
- 512MB RAM
- 1300mAh battery
- Dual SIM options
So it seems like a safe, testing the waters out kind of launch, but that's not totally unexpected. A commitment to Windows 10 from Acer for this phone at least gives us hope for the future, as well. We'll be going hands on with it very soon so stay tuned for that, but in the meantime check out the full press release and some more images below.
First Acer Windows 8.1 Phone Launched at Mobile World Congress
Liquid M220 designed for those who look for a simply smart life
BARCELONA, March 1st, 2015 – Acer today unveils the Liquid M220 smartphone, first ever Liquid smartphone to run on the Windows Phone 8.1 operating system. "We are proudly introducing our first Windows Phone 8.1 and simultaneously announcing its future upgradability to Windows Phone 10," said ST Liew, Smartphone Business Group President at Acer. "It is the right moment for Acer to join the Windows Phone eco-system with its growing popularity and consistency across phone and PC devices." The Liquid M220 will be on display at Acer's booth (Hall 1, stand G50) during MWC2015 in Barcelona.
For those who are looking for a perfectly balanced Windows mobile experience, Acer developed the Liquid M220; putting simplicity and essential features for people on the move at the center. With a 4-inch 233 pixels per inch (PPI) display, the compact Liquid M220 enables a vivid multimedia experience and its dual cameras are perfect for taking photos and recording videos on-the-go. Featuring Windows Phone 8.1, the Liquid M220 is easy to use and customize and fully supports Microsoft applications and services such as OneDrive, Skype, Office and of course Cortana .
"With the addition of a Windows-based smartphone, Acer now offers the broadest Windows portfolio in the industry," Liew added. "With the launch of the Liquid M220, it's great to see Acer expanding its portfolio of Windows devices to include smartphones," said Peter Han, Vice President of Worldwide Marketing, OEM Division, Microsoft. "Together we are providing an integrated, cross-device Windows experience to our joint customers."
Aesthetics of Living Style
The Liquid M220 features a design that is as functional as it is beautiful. The sophisticated surface texture design on the cover sports a Thai Silk inspired pattern, while the silver middle frame features a distinct square pyramid design, adding grip and elegance. The volume and power keys are positioned along the path of the silver middle frame making them easy to find and providing a comfortable single hand experience.
While the voice and video calling features allow users to always stay connected, the 5MP auto-focus main and 2MP front cameras will capture beautiful moments. The main camera sports an 89-degree wide-angle lens, which lets users fit more of the scene into their photos. With the Liquid M220, every owner can easily save and share their memories!
Windows Phone 8.1 offers a productive alternative to other operating systems; it is extremely intuitive and easy to personalize, because Windows powers most of the PCs and laptops in the world, the phone has a familiarity and provides seamless integration across devices. A clean interface and a host of customization options means, you can customize the live tiles, colours and layout of the screen to really make the device your own. Plus, staying in touch with friends and family is easier than ever.
Accessories and connected devices for more fun
Both the Liquid Leap and Liquid Leap+ smart activebands are compatible with Windows Phone 8.1, becoming the ideal companions of the Liquid M220 for health conscious users with fitness tracking or anyone looking for a smarter way to stay in touch with deported notifications and music-control. The Liquid M220 will also have optional accessories ranging from matching colour flip covers to matching colour protective cases.
Availability and Pricing
The Liquid M220 will become available in April through selected EMEA retailers in Mystic Black & Pure White with a starting price of €79.-.
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Richard Devine is a Managing Editor at Windows Central with over a decade of experience. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently, you'll find him steering the site's coverage of all manner of PC hardware and reviews. Find him on Mastodon at mstdn.social/@richdevine