Acer has been around for a long time, but never really in the forefront. I've found that they're a solid company with some very good equipment. The support is a bit harder to get than HP or Dell - but then just talking to someone certainly doesn't guarantee a quality support experience! Acer is far faster with electronic replies - I've sent them several questions via e-mail that I've had replies on within an hour. That's better than HP or Dell!
As far as hardware goes, they've found the sweet spot with their 6920 series - there are no HP or Dell machines around anywhere (in a store) that have the combination of features that the Acer does. I was willing to spend $1,500 for an HP if it had a decent video card (ie better than an 8400M GS) but I never did find one. Acer has the 9500M GS in this series (slightly faster than the 8600M GT) with a 16:9 aspect ratio, 16" screen, 320 GB hard drive, 3 GB RAM for under $1,000 (CDN). Nobody even comes close to that. For another $100 - if I could find one - they throw in a Blu-ray drive. HP and Dell will be scrambling trying to compete with this one!