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Archos 70b

We haven't had a chance to fully test this product yet, but we've assembled this helpful overview of relevant information on it.

When Archos releases its 70b tablet it will be the first under-$200 tablet that will be running the Android 3.2 operating system. The 70b comes with a 1.2GHz processor and 512 MB of RAM. The screen is 7-inches comes with a resolution of 1024 by 600. Some other features that the tablet will feature include an SD card slot, HDMI output and 3D gaming capabilities. Note that unlike the Fire and Nook Tablet there is no microphone or webcam on the 70b.

Features List:

– Android 3.2 operating system

– 1.2GHz processor

– 512 MB of RAM

– 7-inch touchscreen

– SD card slot

– HDMI output

– Under $200

Digital Trends’ Tablet Buying Tips:

Battery Life

At the moment tablet battery life ranges between 7 and 10 hours, with the iPad 2 leading the pack at over 10 hours. As a rule of thumb you’ll want to at least make sure the tablet will last you through the day, so consider what your average usage might in a day be before purchasing a tablet.

Wi-Fi or 3G?

Internet access is vital to tablets. As cool as these gadgets are, without the Internet, they can’t do much of anything.

Though Wi-Fi versions of most tablets are available, getting an always-on 3G connection is expensive. On most carriers, 3G access will run you about $30 a month for 5GB of “unlimited” data. On a tablet, it isn’t difficult to download 5GB of images, audio, and video from the Web in a month. AT&T is worse, offering only 2GB of data for $25 a month. Some carriers are even offering a $200 discount on the Samsung Galaxy Tab if you sign a two-year 3G contract. Before signing up for a plan like this, ask yourself if the $200 savings is worth the cumulative $720+ you’ll pay while locked into contract. Two years is a long time, especially in the tablet market.

Apps

Apple’s App Store is more robust at this point than Google’s Android Market, and has more apps customized for larger tablet screens. Before you buy, it’s a good idea to search for a few apps that you consider high priority.

What are tablets?

Tablets are small touch computers meant for a broad array of tasks. Though some are marketed for specific purposes, tablets are meant to be good at a number of things including e-book reading. Though Microsoft failed to get stylus tablet PCs to take off eight years ago, Apple reinvented the category this year. Thanks to the overnight success of the iPad, tablets have begun to pop up everywhere. Modern tablets usually have a full-color LCD touchscreen measuring between seven and 10 inches diagonally, are great at video and Web-related tasks like e-mail, can install applications, and run on smartphone operating systems. Due to a lack of a physical keyboard, these devices are better for consuming entertainment than creating it. The Apple iPad, Samsung Galaxy Tab, and HP Slate make up the first generation of touch tablets. If you have a strong hankering to browse the web, stream movies & TV, check your email, download apps, play Angry Birds, or look at anything in color, a tablet is probably best for you.

What Operating System should I use?

It’s very important to choose an operating system that is easy to use and intuitive for you. Currently, the two dominant platforms are Apple iOS, which powers the iPad, and Google Android, which powers most of the non-Apple tablets. Fans from each camp could go on for pages about either OS, but the decision boils down to several key differences. Android has a number of exclusive features like Flash streaming support and home-screen widgets, but the iOS is generally a more stable and slick experience with more available apps. Mac or iTunes users will find iOS more accessible, while geeks and tinkerers will enjoy some of the freedoms Android offers.

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