Acer may be predominantly known for its PC products, laptops and monitors, but the manufacturer is now also moving in a new direction – almost literally. The company is expanding its line-up to include a range of new electric devices, including e-scooters and e-bikes.
The Acer Ebii is part of the brand's eco-friendly push into a more sustainable future. First teased in March this year, it is an AI-powered smart e-bike that learns from the rider the more it is used. And T3 got to see it in the flesh during the company's COP 28 keynote address in Dubai.
We also sat down for a chat with Acer's president of EMEA, Emmanuel Fromont, to find out more about the all-electric bike and plans for future sustainable transport options. He told us that the Ebii is just the first to hit the market:
"Ebii is a little bit of a flagship because we took a piece of blank paper and said, 'Okay, how do we do a bike like this?' So, at the price point of that bike, there's not going to be big volume," he explained.
"But once we have the technology, we'll announce soon, a lower version of the bike.
"Most of the IT functionality will still be there, but maybe a little bit less IoT (Internet of Things). And later on, maybe we'll take a more traditional bike that we'll try to enhance through the app and a few sensors. Then make it more scalable, more affordable."
For now, the Acer Ebii will be a premium product, priced around €4,000 / $4,200. It will also only likely make it to certain markets, where the demand for a luxury, smart, electric bike will be at its highest.
It's certainly an interesting proposition. The Ebii adapts to your riding style and preferences, in order to help you travel more efficiently. It assesses your pedalling power, riding conditions and preferred level of assistance and adjusts accordingly. That means it doesn't require gears, for example, as it can apply more power when it detects you are going up a hill.
Or, if you prefer to remain more actively involved, it will intuitively learn to back off a bit.
Other tech features include a removable battery pack, which can also double as a portable charger for your laptop and phone. And there are collision detection sensors to alert you of oncoming cars or other obstructions.
Plus, as it is connected to your phone through a dedicated app, it will lock itself when you are not nearby. GPS can also be used to find the Ebii on your handset.
It's all clever stuff, and we hope at least some of the same features will appear on future, more affordable models.
As it stands, the current Acer Ebii has a range of up to 110km (68 miles) on a single charge and features a maximum assist speed of up to 25km/h (15.5mph).
At 23.5kg, the bike is quite heavy though, as we discovered during the Acer event.
It will be available in several markets from early next year.