Tablet offers relief to one’s pockets
Retailing for only P15,999, the Archos 101 Internet Tablet is among the most affordable 10-inch-size Android tablets in the market today.
Similar to the pricier branded 10-inch tablets, the Archos 101 features capacitive touchscreen, 16 GB internal flash drive, built-in webcam, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, 1GHz ARM mobile CPU, 720p HD video playback, micro SD slot, USB port (full size), built-in microphone, and micro HDMI port.
Its Android OS has been upgraded to firmware 2.3.26 from the previous Android 2.21.
Archos as a brand has been around for quite some time. It is from a French company that specializes in portable multimedia devices and storage devices with affordable tag prices.
As an Android-run device, the Archos 101 features more than two homescreens. One homescreen is dedicated to apps that access settings and connectivity, while another is solely dedicated to video playback. Videos installed in the tablet are previewed on this screen in tile format, so you can easily pick or touch the ones you wish to play.
Once the tablet is connected to a bigger screen, such as an LCD TV via the mini-HDMI port, the tablet becomes a big touchpad with black display, where your finger can function like a mouse to control playback of the video mirrored entirely on the LCD screen.
The tablet functioning as a touchpad also allows you to navigate contents of the tablet on the bigger LCD screen, like getting to the applications and launching them.
In addition to being a touchpad, the tablet can also function as a game controller. The user can move the tablet much like using a real steering wheel to navigate winding race tracks in certain games.
Another multimedia feature of the Archos 101 is its ability to stream media files from a PC’s Windows Media Library through UPnP, or universal plug-and-play.
The tablet can also access your PC’s files through Wi-Fi, but you need to first configure your PC to allow sharing of files through a wireless network. Once this feature has been set up, you can open the Shared Folders in Archos 101 and remotely access videos, music, and photos from your PC.
So far, Archos 101 is the only tablet that has a kick stand to allow the user to prop the device on a table and enjoy watching a movie or browse the web without having to hold the device.
For video playback, the tablet offers good volume, but the screen lacks a bit in brightness, particularly when viewing movies with a lot of night scenes. You really need to connect it to a bigger LCD display to enjoy a real bright display.
There is a camera present but it only faces the front. This is okay for Internet video calls, but the camera has a low quality to it.
The tablet’s capacitive screen isn’t made of sturdier Gorilla Glass and the chassis is made entirely of plastic, so you really need to invest on a good protective cover for this tablet to protect it from accidental bumps and falls. A screen protector and a leather case will do.
Still, for its price, the Archos 101 is a tablet fit for budget-conscious individuals looking to enjoy a big-screen Android tablet that offers a good media player.