Archos to launch 11.6-inch Full HD XS tablet in 2013, reveals prices of Smaller XS tablets

Archos, the French electronics company, has finally revealed three new Android tablets as a part of 10th generation genXS lineup. Previous year’s kernel revealed that a ~12” offering from the company was in the pipeline, and things have turned out to be more clear now. Archos is said to be working towards launching an 11.6 inch tablet device. The company isn’t the first one to reveal a 10 inch plus in the works, however, 116 XS is going to be the cheapest in that category.

Some people would argue and render an 11.6 inch or 13.3 inch tablet device as useless, but it’s not okay to make such claims without the actual device being launched in the market. If we go back in time, people had said similar things to say about Samsung’s Galaxy Note device, which is basically a 5.3 inch tablet hybrid device, or a phablet. Things turned out to be different after the launch of Galaxy Note, and it turned out to be incredibly successful. Samsung managed to sell more than 10 million units of this phablet, and the upcoming successor of the device, Samsung Galaxy Note II, is also expected to experience similar success. Galaxy Note’s case definitely testifies the fact that one cannot predict how a device will work out to be in the market without it being actually launched. There was a time when any device that is tiny and compact would sell in large numbers, but consumers are going towards bigger screens these days, so giving consumers what they’re demanding definitely makes sense if a company wants to sell its products.

The Archos 116 XS will be the first device from Archos to incorporate a screen with Full HD resolution of 1920×1200. The device is slated to make a launch in early 2013, and will be booting Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box. The company is aiming to keep the price tag well below €5 00. If you take a look at the above image, it’s clear that like the 101 XS, even 116 XS will come with a ‘coverboard’ keyboard dock.

Launch of Asus’ Google Nexus 7, a 7 inch Android Jelly Bean tablet, has sent shockwaves across the tablet industry. The build quality of this budget device is great, so is the hardware. Google Nexus 7 retails at $199 for the 8 gig model and $249 for the 16 gig model, and this device has now set a standard for how a budget tablet device should look, feel and function like. More and more manufacturers are working towards manufacturing their own device to challenge Google Nexus 7, and Archos is one of them. Archos will be launching an 8 inch Archos 80 XS with a price tag of €200. Google’s Nexus 7 is now available in Germany, France, and Spain for the same price, and that discloses the fact that Archos is indeed working towards competing head-to-head with the Asus-made Google Nexus 7. Archos’ offering will of course have some advantage over Nexus 7, including the bigger screen and the 4:3 aspect ratio. The 80 XS is expected to launch by end of this year, and inclusion of coverboard keyboard dock is highly unlikely as it’s a budget tablet device, however, it may be offered as an option, unlike what the case is with the 101 XS.

The third device is the Archos 97 XS. This device will be having an IPS touchscreen display with 4:3 aspect ratio. It must be noted that not many manufacturers in the Android tablet business use 4:3 aspect ratio for their screens, however, one notable player in this field using this aspect ratio is Apple in its iPad range of tablets. Archos 97 XS is expected to be launched in the market as early as November, and this model too will be booting Android 4.1 Jelly Bean out of the box. It will come with a price tag of €399, and more details on this device are expected to be out soon.

The prices quoted are of course not final and may change at the time of actual launch. Like the recently announced 101 XS, all these devices will also have a very thin form factor. Archos 101 XS’ design is very elegant to say the least. Taking a look at track record of Archos, we expect the G10/XS lineup to be using the same TI OMAP 4470 dual-core processor that is used on other models.

It’s good to see that Archos is finally switching to Full HD touchscreens, and bigger displays, thus entering the league of big boys. Tablets with bigger screen may do well or may not sell at all, as not many have ventured into this market yet. Nevertheless, this transition is sure to help the French company in the long run. What are your thoughts on these tablet devices? Would you fancy buying one for yourself? Have your say in the comment section below.

Company profile: Archos is a French consumer electronics company that was established in 1988. It has developed a variety of products, including digital audio players, digital video recorders, a personal digital assistant, portable video players (PVP), netbooks, tablet computers using Google Android and Microsoft Windows (tablet PCs). Archos is also the name given to the core artificial intelligence responsible for the robot that is featured in Robopocalypse, a popular novel.

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