CES 2022: Acer's latest green laptop gives more back to the environment, but not for US customers

Each purchase of an Aspire Vero National Geographic Edition puts cash in the coffers of the nonprofit, but it's only going to be available in a select few countries.

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Taiwanese tech giant Acer kicked off CES 2022 with the announcement of a new addition to its Acer Aspire Vero line of eco-friendly laptops. Called the Acer Aspire Vero National Geographic Edition, this specially designed Vero gives money back to Nat Geo with every purchase—a great incentive to go green with your next laptop purchase. 

The Acer Vero line of laptops, launched last year, are made with a chassis and screen bezel that utilizes 30% post-consumer recycled plastic, and a keyboard made up of 50% PCR. According to Acer, the PCR plastic in the chassis alone reduces the carbon emission for producing that part alone by 21%. 

"Acer has been taking steps over the past several years to reduce its ecological footprint. The Vero product lineup … represents the latest of these efforts," said Acer's GM for notebooks and IT products James Lin. 

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Like the previous models of the Vero, the Nat Geo edition uses PCR plastics in the same ratio. Its big difference comes in some Nat Geo branding and design additions, like the Nat Geo yellow border in the corner of the keyboard, an embossed topographical map on the lid and the inclusion of yellow pigmented plastics to give the laptop a bit of National Geographic flare without the need for paints, which Acer said it eliminated in the Vero line to further reduce emissions. 

In terms of the actual hardware, there's nothing in the National Geographic Edition of the Vero that makes it an upgrade over the versions released in late 2021. It still has the same 11th Gen Intel Core processor, Intel Iris Xe graphics, Wi-Fi 6, Windows 11, one USB-C and two USB-A ports. 

In addition to its green components and hardware capabilities, the Vero is also designed to be easily upgraded, with six standard Phillips screws keeping its bottom plate attached. Once removed, Acer says accessing the RAM and SSD are simple, allowing for expansion of its capabilities to keep it working longer.

So, why buy the Nat Geo edition over the regular Vero? Because you're giving money to National Geographic, which in turn spends that money on programs that protect wildlife and help preserve the natural world. 

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If you want to do that, however, you'll need to be in one of just a handful of countries where the Vero Nat Geo edition will be available, namely France, where it will go on sale in March for €899, and China, where it will be available sometime this month for ¥5,499. Acer said it also plans to release the Aspire Vero Nat Geo edition in "multiple countries across the Asia Pacific," but didn't say which ones. 

If you still want an Acer Vero for yourself, or a fleet of eco-friendly Veros designed for business, you can still find them in the U.S. and elsewhere, but it won't come with the redesigned case and you'll have to make a contribution to National Geographic on your own. Consider it the "non-automated" version of the process. 

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Image: Acer