The Archos 70b eReader appeared with very little fanfare. Whilst everyone is talking tablets, this 7-inch Android device appears with the eReader label, the second such device the company has made.
It offers up a 7-inch 800 x 480 resistive display, encased in a slim body, but finished in plastics. In the hand it isn’t the highest quality, with noticeable creaking when manipulated, and in truth, isn't very far removed from any number of cheap Android tablets we've seen recently.
Running Android 2.1 Eclair, it offers Archos’ usual AppsLib, so you can get to some Android apps to expand the native functions of the 70b eReader.
Out of the box it comes with widgets for your books, letting you flick through your library and get reading. Two buttons flank the screen letting you flick through the pages. Otherwise buttons are kept to a minimum, with all controls being via the screen.
Specs are rather on the lightweight side, offering 4GB internal memory, expandable via SD card up to 16GB, and naturally it supports Wi-Fi. It measures 190 x 130 x 11.2mm and weighs 370g.
Of course, offering a backlit display you’ll get 10 hours of reading in the dark, as well as full colour video and music, as you’d expect from Archos. In addition it claims to support Adobe DRM out of the box, so we’ll be throwing some DRM’d EPUB books at it to see if it plays ball.
It’s a slight oddity, not falling strongly on the tablet side or convincingly on the ebook reader side, but we'll be giving it a good going over to bring you a full review in the not to distant future.
One positive factor might be the price: £119, although that’s still more than the Amazon Kindle Wi-Fi.