DigiTimes received word that Acer has contracted Foxconn for a small volume notebook test production run. If the test run goes smoothly, Foxconn could become an official supplier to Acer as early as next year. Acer has rapidly increased its notebook shipments over the last couple of years, this year the company is expected to ship 40 million units, compared with 30 million units in 2009.
The Acer-Foxconn collaboration could have a severe impact on Inventec, sources said. Acer outsources production based on a so-called "3+1" model, which means ordering from the "big three" – Quanta Computer, Compal Electronics and Wistron, and one more lower-tier notebook maker. Inventec became the forth vendor in 2008, but has received limited orders thus far. Quanta, Compal and Wistron account for 95% of Acer's notebook orders.
Acer and Foxconn have been in talks about possible notebook cooperation, said company chairman JT Wang. If price, quality and shipment schedules are suitable, Acer could source from Foxconn, but there are no detailed order plans as yet, he added.