Low-cost tablets have come a long way in the past few years. If you wanted a tablet that sold for under $200 you used to have to settle for one with a lousy screen, a sluggish processor, and a limited selection of apps.
Now you can find some top notch tablets for between $100 and $250 and bargain hunters can even score some pretty good models for under $100.
So it’s kind of disappointing to see companies continuing to crank out lousy hardware in an effort to keep prices low. But that’s just what French electronics company Archos is doing with its new line of Neon tablets.
The Archos Neon tablets aren’t entirely horrible. They have reasonably fast (if relatively old) processors, but there’s not much excuse for some of the compromises. For instance, the smallest model has a 9 inch, 800 x 480 pixel display. That’s a display resolution that looks a bit pixelated on a 4 inch phone. Now think about what it would look like on a device with a 9 inch screen.
Archos is launching 3 models, the Archos 90 Neon, Archos 97 Neon, and Archos 101 Neon. They feature 9 inch, 9.7 inch, and 10.1 inch screens respectively, and all 3 tabelts have 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage, microSD card slots, and quad-core processors.
The 9.7 inch model has a 1024 x 768 pixel display while the 10 inch tablet has a 1024 x 600 pixel screen and the tablets range in weight from 1 pound for the 9 inch model to 1.5 pounds for the 10 inch model.
Basically it’s like Archos ripped spec sheets from 2011 and applied them to new tablets. The best thing we can probably say about the new Archos Neon tablets is that they’ll probably be dirt cheap when they hit the streets.
My desktop computer has a 20.5″ monitor with 1600×900 pixels; nearly the same pixel density as the tablet that you are criticising. I don’t find my display to be noticeably pixelated or unsatisfactory in any way. In my opinion the ultra high resolution mobile phone and tablet displays are mostly to do with specsmanship and the art of convincing people to part with more money than is necessary.
No Comment – Last Archos 80 G9 (loved the design, just not the minimal hardware that could not run the version of Android loaded on it… AND guess what, they didn’t have upgrade support for newer Android (faster 4.1) that could have given it the speed needed to get out of it’s sluggish way. The Turbo version ran ok, but the original needs a different OS. For the Brave, you might be able to try this port of Jelly Bean to the 80 G9, that would be interesting if Brad wrote about…
Demo See: Archos G9 running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean CyanogenMod 10 firmware (CM10)
Info here: https://forum.archosfans.com/viewtopic.php?f=84&t=66882
Or, how to just plain load Lubuntu or Ubuntu on it instead… for the original 80 G9 the current Android (4.0) is too heavy for both the RAM and the CPU. Archos should back this support by CyanogenMod directions, vs trying to invent their own Android versions that they most likely can’t afford, or have no interest, in supporting for more than a few months after they stop making or selling the units they have pushed out the door (in favor of supporting only units currently sold)?
Ubuntu on 80 G9 – See:
HOW TO INSTALL UBUNTU 13.04 ON ARCHOS 80 G9
Good luck, too bad the average buyer can’t do this mod or upgrading, usually, themselves, to make use of a device when it falls out of favor by it’s manufacturer.
It’s hard to beat a quad core Ematic 7 inch tablet from WalMart for $79.
With Archos the pain comes AFTER the sale in the form of no support.
Archos is cringeworthy.
It’s so nice, and healthy, to see some form of criticism in the tech world. Kudos to Brad.
These look like digital photo frames.
Unless they go for $50-$100, i would not cheap enough.
Dirt cheap isn’t always a good deal. Archos is also well known for lousy support.
Move along…nothing to see here.
Comments are closed.