I could tell you about the Archos 97 Premium's features. It's specifications. The version of Android it's running. How much it might cost. But honestly, Archos has made it a near certainty that no one will remotely care about any of these things, because of the 97 Premium's decidedly interesting design. Let me just do a little side by side for you.
Is the 97 Premium an iPad? No. Is it so obviously meant to draw comparisons to the iPad that it borders on something I'd expect out of a fly-by-night Chinese manufacturer?
Back in August, Archos announced its then-upcoming GamePad, a tablet which looks to "revolutionize" gaming on Android. Featuring built-in physical game controls and custom button mapping software, the GamePad removes the need for touch controls, giving mobile gaming a more console-like feel, while its 7" display still keeps it portable enough to toss in your bag and take on-the-go. And now, it's finally available.
The GamePad is on sale in Europe for 149.99€, with North American availability coming in early 2013.
If you have a 101 XS from Archos, it's time to furiously start hitting the "check updates" button, as the company just began pushing Android 4.1.1 (Jelly Bean) to the device. This bumps the tablet up to version 4.1.0, and brings a couple other enhancements along for the ride, as well:
Android Jelly Bean 4.1.1 firmware release
Archos Video: major upgrade with simplified video information retrieval and media indexing, new network shares infrastructure
Archos applications: future updates of Archos Video, Music, File Manager, System Monitor applications (embedded in the firmware) will be carried out through Google Play
So there you go - if Jelly Bean is what you've been feening for, the wait is over.
Archos is sending an OTA update to its 80/101 G9 and 101XS tablets right now that brings several enhancements to the devices, including some media and video playback features, improved display outputs, and more. The update for the 80/101 G9 also brings some fixes for units containing HDDs, and the 101XS is getting a device-specific tweak to the keyboard.
Today, ARCHOS released details on its newest small form factor tablet, the 80 Cobalt. Clearly aimed at the lower end of the slate market, this device packs a 1.6Ghz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of on-board storage and a rather meager 1024x768 display. Fortunately, the device also includes the controversial as of late micro SD card slot.
Here's the full list of specs you care about:
Dual core @ 1.6 GHz with Quad core GPU
8” 1024 x 768 display (4:3 aspect ratio)
8 GB flash memory
2MP rear camera
0.3MP front camera
Micro SD slot (SDHC compatible) Up to 64 GB
Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
To put it politely, the specs don't exactly overwhelm.
Back at the end of August, Archos announced an innovative new tablet called the GamePad. As its namesake suggests, it's built with gaming in mind - complete with on-board controls. In the announcement, Archos claimed the 7" device had "automatic gaming recognition and mapping tools" - the big question was, however, how's that going to work?
We now have a better idea of what to expect from the GamePad, as ArmDevices.net has gotten some hands-on time with the device.
If you own either of Archos' G9 series tablets (the 80 or 101), then an OTA should be coming your way. The update brings version 4.0.24, and includes not only a bump up to Android 4.0.4, but several enhancements and fixes, most of which deal with the Media Center:
ARCHOS, in an announcement that ambitiously looks to "revolutionize" Android gaming, has just unveiled the GamePad – a 7-inch, dual-core gaming tablet with built in controls (including buttons, a d-pad, triggers, and analog sticks) that remind us a little bit of Sony's PSP.
The interesting bit about this tablet is that it includes "automatic game recognition and mapping tools" which ARCHOS promises will "ensure control compatibility with every advanced Android game."
Of course, one of the most important things about a mobile device meant to center around gaming is its spec sheet.
"Unique" is the name of the game with the Archos 101 XS. Just about every design decision goes against the status quo. Most tablets are made out of aluminum or plastic, but Archos went with stainless steel and a plastic rim. It's a tablet-laptop hybrid, but there's no hinge, everything is held together with a kickstand and some magnets. The included keyboard dock also doubles as a magnetic cover. At a time when some Android OEMs are accusedfound guilty of doing little more than firing up a photocopier, some out-of-the-box thinking is very much appreciated.
Way back in March of '12, we heard that ARCHOS would be releasing a new line of thin, keyboard-packing tablets. The first of those rumored devices has now emerged as the 101 XS, and it actually looks pretty neat.
The device itself is a fairly typical 10" tablet: 1.5GHz dual-core OMAP 4470, 1GB RAM, 16GB storage, Android 4.0 (4.1 OTA update is expected to roll out in "Q4 2012"). What makes this device unique(ish), however, is its magnetic keyboard dock, which ARCHOS has named the Coverboard.