If Google Android tablets have any chance of erasing the steep gains the Apple iPad has already made in global market share, it will be through innovating in the inexpensive tablet space. There are plenty of cheap Android tablets available now or soon to be available, though, so it may be hard for some manufacturers to attract users.
The Viewsonic ViewPad 7e, which is an update last year’s ViewPad 7, could attract people simply based its spec list, which is fairly decent for the small price tag. It features a 7-inch screen with an 800 x 600 resolution, a 1-GHz processor, a micro-HDMI port, a 3-megapixel camera, a 0.3-megapixel front-facing camera for video calling, 4GB of internal storage and a microSD slot compatible with up to 32GB cards. On the software side, the ViewPad 7e runs Android 2.3 with a customized 3D-like user interface.
Lenovo also recently began offering a similar Android tablet called the IdeaPad A1, which runs $199. The IdeaPad has similar specs with its 7-inch screen with 1024 x 600 resolution, 1-GHz Cortex A8 processor, 3-megapixel camera on the back, .3-megapixel camera on front, a GPS receiver, 2GB of internal storage and a microSD card for extra storage.
That said, the Amazon Kindle Fire looks to be the $200 Android-based tablet to beat this holiday season. It will be available Nov. 14 and features a 7-inch screen with 1024 x 600 resolution, a dual-core processor, 8GB of onboard storage and a custom skin of Android that doesn’t actually look like Android. On top of those specs, it will offer access to Amazon’s wide array of e-books, music and streaming TV and movies.
What Android tablet are you most interested in?