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Acer Iconia Tab A500
Acer was a pioneer in smaller form-factor computing, delivering one of the first, off-the-charts popular netbooks to an IT industry that was suddenly overwhelmed by the phenomena four years ago. So when the tablet avalanche began, we wouldn’t have expected anything less from Acer than full-bore engagement.
The Acer Iconia Tab A500 shipped originally with Android 2.3, but accommodated an upgrade to the Honeycomb version of Android, version 3.0. The company said it was designed as a content-consumption device, although we found its on-board camera to be fine for both casual photography or even bar-code scanning.
Like other tablets, the Tab A500 is not built evenly with a comfortable center of gravity; it’s thinner at the edges and thicker in the middle and this provides an uneven feel in some regards. For many that’s not an issue but, after examining the iPad 2 and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, we noticed it and believe that most evaluators will as well.
The Tab A500 was built to support 2G, 3G and Wi-Fi connectivity, has an Nvidia Tegra 2 dual-core processor at 1GHz and has a 5-megapixel camera that we really liked. For a communication device, either through what’s available now—Skype or Google Talk, for example—it’s a fine device.
The Tab A500 is priced to be competitive, and passes our cost-and-complexity test.
Technical Stars: 3
Channel Stars: 4
Price: $494 for 32 GB (street)