May just be lucky but my two netbooks (one hotrodded), two tablets (W3 and W510), and a 23" monitor all are working just fine despite the torture tests I put them through.
Certainly sounds like your problem is mechanical and not software, neither the BIOS nor the OS has anything to do with charging the battery, is just hardware. Personally, I'd probably try a different charger (W3 appears to have a 3mm x 1.1mm center positive plug) or just check the charger with a DVM first, should be 12-12.4vdc @ 1500 ma.
I know this is an old thread, but what can we do if the W3 only works when plugged in? Can I return it to Acer? I've only turned it on about 10 times since I got it in October, but I doubt i can bring it back to Walmart after 90 days. Very, VERY expensive for a paper weight!!
No, I bought it for my wife in October, and she never used it. I used it once or twice for a bit, and it has been turned off for since early November. I tried to turn it on and the battery was dead, so I charged it up overnight and started it up, but it dies whenever unplugged. I updated the OS and whatever else when I used it in October, but it has nop updates that may have been released since Nov. 4th.