Thursday, June 2, 2011

Acer ICONIA TAB A500 now available

For those looking for Android alternatives to Apple's iPad, the Tegra 2 powered Acer ICONIA TAB A500 is here. Available only in WiFi only variants with either 16GB or 32GB of internal storage, the ICONIA undercuts Apple's pricing.

Acer ICONIA TAB A500 16GB WiFi only - Php21,900
Apple iPad 2 16GB WiFi only - Php23,990

Acer ICONIA TAB A500 32GB WiFi only - Php23,900
Apple iPad 2 32GB WiFi only - Php28,990

Savings on the 16GB model as against the iPad 2 is small, only about Php2K. Savings on the 32GB model is a fairly substantial 5K. 

Which is the better deal? The iPad 2 is lighter at 1.33 pounds, while the ICONIA  weighs in at 1.6 pounds. The difference is bigger than it sounds. The iPad 2 also has a much better ecosystem with 65,000 iPad specific apps.

What the ICONIA bring to the table is a full 720p HD screen (1280 x 800) as against the iPad 2's 1024 x 768 screen. The Google Android 3.x operating system is a true multitasking OS and the ICONIA has 1GB of RAM for the purpose. The iPad 2 allows limited multitasking an it has 512MB of RAM.

Which one do I like? Neither. If I got a tablet, I am more inclined to get a BlackBerry PlayBook. The less than 1 pound 7-inch multitasking PlayBook strikes as a more mobile device. Or maybe the soon to be released 8.9-inch, 1.04 pound, Samsung Galaxy Tab.  If I carried around a larger device I would just buy a low cost low powered ultraportable laptop like a Acer Aspire One 722 or a Sony Vaio YB. But I seem to be in the minority.

If I had to choose between the two, I already have a Android phone. A iOS tablet would give me the best of both worlds... so the iPad 2.

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