The Acer Liquid Metal has finally been announced: the company's attempt at keeping up with the big boys in the Android smartphone market.

The new Liquid Metal comes with Android 2.2 right out of the box, as well as Acer's Breeze UI, which offers additional widgets even from the lock screen - first seen on the Acer Stream.

Spec wise it's (sort of) up there with the best, with a 3.6-inch capacitive LCD screen and a 5MP camera with AF and LED flash on the back - also capable of capturing video at 720p HD.

The processor is only a Qualcomm 7230 800 MHz offering, which we'll be interested to see if it can live up to Acer's promise of 'lightning fast navigation'.

Signal booster

To that end, 3G signal has been boosted to HSDPA 14.4Mbps and Wi-Fi to include 802.11n (where the connections allow, this means browsing up to five times faster than other devices, according to Acer).

We're hoping the battery holds on better than the others in the Acer Liquid series, as the rest of the family was notoriously poor in this area.

But we're impressed with the UK price: a top end smartphone for £299? It might not be beating the Orange San Francisco for budget-friendliness, but that still means it's a cheaper option than a lot of the others on the market right now.

The Acer Liquid Metal will be offered in two variants: brown, with a UK release date of mid November, and silver, which is set to land in December.