As part of its XS lineup of 10th generation (G10) Android tablets, Archos is also apparently hard at work on an 11.6-inch offering. The French company wouldn’t be the first one rumored to tackle tablet sizes over 10 inches, but its 116 XS will probably be the cheapest in that space.
It’s easy to dismiss such huge tablets (11.6-inch and 13.3-inch are the sizes we’ve heard about so far) as useless. But it was also easy to do the same to 5.3-inch smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy Note when that launched last year, yet it went on to sell millions of units. So who knows – maybe bigger is always better? At least in terms of screen sizes, that is.
The Archos 116 XS will be the company’s first tablet to come with Full HD resolution (1920×1200 in this case). It will be released in early 2013, and will run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean from day one. Archos said it will do its best to keep this model’s pricing below €500. It’s also pretty clear from the image above that the 116 XS will come with the ‘coverboard’ keyboard dock included in the package, just like the 101 XS.
Thanks to IDBOOX, who attended a confidential briefing at Archos, we now have more details about the other members of the XS line too.
The 8-inch Archos 80 XS will cost €200, thus competing head-to-head with the Asus-made Google Nexus 7 which was just made available in Germany, France, and Spain for the exact same price. Archos’ advantage will, of course, be the bigger screen and (for some) the 4:3 aspect ratio. The 80 XS will arrive by the end of the year, and the coverboard may not be included in the box in the cheapest version (unlike what the case is with the 101 XS, which effectively can’t be bought without Archos’ magnetic keyboard dock).
The Archos 97 XS, again coming with a 4:3 aspect ratio (which is rare in the Android world, but mimics the iPads) and an IPS touchscreen, will be on the market in early November, with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean preinstalled. It will be sold for €399 (so €20 more than the 101 XS, oddly). This high(er) price may have something to do with the screen, but we can’t be sure for now.
The prices quoted above may of course change between now and the release date for each tablet. Like their names imply, all of these will be very thin, in a similar fashion to the already announced 101 XS. If we go by past events, do expect the entire G10/XS lineup to be powered by the same TI OMAP 4470 dual-core processor too.
With the move to Full HD touchscreens, and bigger displays, Archos is stepping into the market of the ‘big boys’. No longer will it be just the discount tablet retailer everyone’s been used to. We’ll have to wait and see see whether this transition will help the French company in the long run.