Similar to the way netbooks were a few
years ago, tablet computers are the current computing hotness, and
with more and more designs from various manufacturers pouring out,
the prices continue to drop. Google and Amazon both currently offer
Android tablets at and just under the $200 mark, but if recent
rumours are true, it seems like Acer is aiming for the magical
$100 mark with its Iconia B1, a 7” design that still includes most
of the features users would want in a typical tablet.
It's not too bad looking a device...
The operating system to be preloaded
onto the device is apparently Android 4.1.2 “Jelly Bean”. While
not the latest version of Android (which is 4.2.1), at least it's not
2.3. Under the hood is a MediaTek 8317T SoC containing two 1.2Ghz ARM
cores, alongside 512MB of RAM. The 8GB of internal flash memory can
be supplanted by up to a 32GB MicroSD card, and the 7” display uses
a 1024x600-pixel resolution. Bluetooth 4.0 and GPS capability round
out the rest of the known specs. Battery life is unknown as of yet,
but it's probably best not to expect the world.
It's probably made entirely out of plastic, though
That said, take all of this information
with a grain of salt. We'll see in a few months whether or not this
device actually surfaces with those specifications and that physical
design, although it's worth noting that Acer submitted the device to
the FCC not too long ago. (Via WSJ)
01/ 07/2013 Update - Acer says that they will release the device in the US for around $130. The above specifications are correct, with the addition of 802.11n WiFi, front-facing VGA camera, 2710mAh battery, a weight of 0.7lbs, and measurements of 7.8" x 5.1" x 0.4". Despite not managing to attain the magic $99 pricetag, the Iconia B1 is still cheaper than the cheapest Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire equivalents.