Acer is reportedly preparing a new Android-based tablet that will cost only US$99. Said device will hit the market next year, according to an anonymous insider source cited by The Wall Street Journal.
The tablet will supposedly be known as the Iconia B1, and will feature a 7-inch display with a resolution of 1024 x 600 pixels, and a 1.2GHz dual-core processor. Images of the tablet had already been leaked online through a Serbian forum. The Iconia B1 is expected to have similar specifications with other available 7-inch tablets in the market, such as the Amazon Kindle Fire and the Barnes and Noble Nook Color. To set itself apart, however, Acer will be selling the tablet at only $99, as compared to the $139 price tags of the two aforementioned slates.
The tablet will be aimed mostly at emerging markets, such as China. This strategy is generally deemed as a wise move for Acer, especially since China is considered to be a fast-growing market for Android tablets. It is estimated that tablet manufacturers in China could sell around 60 million units of the devices in 2013.
The Acer Iconia B1 had also been spotted at the website of the Federal Communications Commission in the United States. Whether it will be sold in the US market, however, remains to be seen.
According to the insider source, the new product is a response to the low-priced tablets currently being offered in the market. The company began planning the device just this fall.
Apart from the tablet, Acer is also expected to launch a cheaper version of its Windows 8 tablets running on Intel processors.
Meanwhile, Asustek Computer, a rival of the Taiwan-based Acer, had also been rumored to be preparing a low-cost Android tablet. A spokesman for Asustek, however, has made a statement that categorically denies the company’s purported plans for a $100 tablet.