The Acer Iconia B1 is really very affordable. We were told it will retail for £99 in the UK, and that makes it just about the best value for money in the tablet space.
The B1 comes with Jelly Bean, the latest version of Android, which is something worth shouting about , especially given the price. The specs are a little average, but there is a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 512MB of RAM and 8GB of storage. Sensibly, there’s also microSD card storage - are you paying attention Google?
The 2700mAh battery is something of a concern, as we suspect it won’t be able to power the device for as long as its rivals. That said, you won’t be playing many games on this tablet either, and the lack of 3G should further help to keep consumption down to a minimum.
It does make logical sense for £100 tablets to start appearing. After all, it’s been possible to get a 3G phone for this price for some time now, and while a tablet is generally larger, they often don’t have 3G radios, which make up a decent chunk of the cost. Acer told us it sees this as a tablet you can give to your kids, and not worry what happens to it. And, to be fair, it felt pretty solid to us too, so even kids might struggle to break it.
No doubt Acer will be hoping the B1 will enjoy some of the success of the Nexus 7, and at this price, we can see - as Acer suggests - this tablet being bought for young people, who crave a tablet but can’t afford a full-blown device. While there are some clear cost-cutting measures in effect here, it still has plenty to offer casual users, and all at a very attractive price.