The new 3rd generation Acer B1, the Acer Iconia B1-720 have become available for pre-order today, and should be ready for release in a few weeks:
The Acer Iconia B1-720 was supposed to ship 2 weeks ago in the US, but for some reason it was delayed. The Acer B1 is Acer’s cheapest 7-inch budget tablet with Android. It was officially unveiled at CES in Las Vegas last month, so at least you can say it’s fresh.
As for specifications, this is not a tablet that will blow your mind away, but it has improved a little from its second generation model. To begin with, $129 gets you a 16GB model with a 1024 x 600 resolution, a 1.3GHz dual-core MediaTek MT8111 processor, and 1GB of DDR3L RAM.
It has most of the regular ports and sensors of a proper tablet, but Acer have cut some corners with this tablet. Most significantly is a 5-hour battery life. This is the battery life squeezed out of a 2955mAh battery. If a salesman in a store had just told you it had a battery life of 5 hours, now would be the time to start walking backwards and scoot away – or simply ask about the other 7-inch tablets in that price range instead.
The only tablets that should be accepted with this kind of battery life, are the dirt cheap sub-$50 tablets that you can get directly from Chinese stores. So when you consider that 7-inch tablets usually have around 4000mAh and an 8 hour+ battery life, you understand that Acer’s battery life figures somewhat takes the point out of mobile computing altogether.
The low battery life was a problem with the 2nd generation model too, so this is almost surreal. Another spec that isn’t going to impress anyone is the 0.3MP front camera, the only camera on board Acer B1-720.
The verdict is very simple. While Acer have improved the 3rd generation Acer B1, it’s still not worth the money, simply because its competitors all have better tablets that are in the same price range, have an 8 hour battery life or better, and higher specifications combined with more features.
The Tablet Comparison Chart shows what a great choice people now have in tablets, especially in the very competitive 7-inch budget tablet category, where there are some good tablets. And the best among them would be the quad-core, 1280 x 800 resolution, ASUS MeMOPad HD 7.
– Jim Miller