Not only is Acer a shining star in the established notebook market, they may soon become a strong player in the smartphone segment as well. Recent reports claim the company is expected to launch as many as nine models this year, in addition to the four Windows Mobile devices announced in February. Acer’s recent acquisition of smartphone vendor E-Ten gave them a bit of a jumpstart, so much so that they may overtake Asus’s position in the market within a year.

While not on the level of Nokia, RIM or Apple, Asus was at least considered to be a competitor with potential. Numerous issues getting into the market have pushed them back, however, which may leave an opening for Acer. They clearly have experience in mobile computing, and have at least one Android-based model in the works. There is a lot of choice in terms of smartphone hardware already, but it would certainly be interesting to see yet another strong competitor in the market.