The Consumer Electronics Show is underway in the United States, and there is a lot of news on new devices. Picking out which ones are most relevant to the Philippines is now easy, but I am pretty sure this one will landing on Philippine shores, Acer's long rumored low cost 7-inch Android tablet. It's now official, the Acer Iconia B1 has been announced carrying a retail price of US$150. This means that it should retail in the Philippines for less than Php9,000. This is substantially lower than the Php14,400 retail price of the Google Nexus 7 32 GB and the Php15,900 retail price of the Apple iPad mini 16 GB.
What do you get for less than 9K? The Acer Iconia B1 has a 7-inch 1024 x 600 display, running a 1.2 GHz ARM Cortex A9 dual core processor on a MediaTek 8317 chipset. The MediaTek 8317 is built on the 40 nanometer process and has PowerVR SGX531 graphics. RAM is 512 MB and internal storage is 8 GB. Storage is expandable via a MicroSD cards. For connectivity the Acer Iconia B1 has WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0. The tablet also has 0.3 MP front camera. The Acer Iconia B1 comes out of the box with Android 4.1.
The Acer Iconia B1 is a bit thicker than expected at 11.3 mm, but it is also pretty light a 320g, which puts it between the weight of the Nexus 7 and iPad mini. The lighter weight is in part due to a 2710 mAh battery, which is smaller than the 4000 mAh batteries we see on 7-inch tablets.
With these specifications, the Acer Iconia B1 is not a direct competitor to the Nexus 7 which has a HD display, and a much more powerful processor and graphics processing unit. Still it will sell at a much lower price point.
With the Acer Iconia B1, Acer will be looking to take the market from the "China" tablets (well they are all actually made in China). Acer glory days were in the height of the Netbook Era. With the Acer Iconia B1, Acer is looking at another low cost platform to propel it to the top of the sales charts.