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Archos Announces Trio of Affordable, Unlocked Android Smartphones

April 18, 2013 - Written By Tom Dawson

You might have heard of Archos as the company that make budget-minded Android tablets that have delivered pretty decent bang for your buck. Now the manufacturer is bringing three affordable handsets that will ship unlocked and with stock Android. This being Archos they’re also going to be retailing for decent prices as well. Let’s take a look at the 35 Carbon, 50 Platinum, 53 Platinum.

Archos 35 Carbon 

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Retailing for just $99 the Carbon 35 is the least impressive of the three handsets and comes with some decent specs when you consider the device is unlocked and ships with stock Android. Archos are describing this as an “entry level” device and they’d be right to do so.

  • 3.5-inch 480 x 320
  • Qualcomm 7225A at 1 Ghz
  • 512 MB of RAM
  • 4 GB of storage with room for microSD cards
  • 1,300 mAh Battery
  • Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich

It’s that last spec that’s really quite jarring here, if a device can run Ice Cream Sandwich then it can at least run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, so to see this here is a little bizarre but, for the price, you could certainly do a lot worse.

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Archos Platinum 50

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Things get significantly more interesting when you take a look at the Archos Platinum 50. It’s a great mid-range device that comes packing a 5-inch IPS display into an 8.9mm frame. Looks wise, the device isn’t anything too special, but for just $220, you can’t complain too much, right?

  • 5-inch qHD Display at 960 x 540
  • Qualcomm 8225Q Quad Core cortex-A5 @1,2 GHz
  • 1GB of RAM
  • 4GB of Storage, with room for microSD cards
  • 8.0MP camera with 2.0MP front-facing camera
  • Android 4.1.2
  • 2,000 mAh

So, while the price takes a hike upwards, so too does the quality of the device. Archos have done a good job here at keeping the price low here but, we’d really have liked to see a 720p display in here, especially at 5-inches.

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Archos Platinum 53

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As the name suggested with the 50, this is a 5.3-inch smartphone that Archos are positioning as their “top of the line” model. However, the 53 and the 50 are very much the same device on the inside, sharing most, if not all of the internals. It’s that extra screen size that sets them apart, and the price tag only jumps a little to $250.

  • 5.3-inch qHD Display at 960 x 540
  • Qualcomm 8225Q Quad Core cortex-A5 @1,2 GHz
  • 1GB of RAM
  • 4GB of Storage, with room for microSD cards
  • 8.0MP camera with 2.0MP front-facing camera
  • Android 4.1.2
  • 2,800 mAh

The battery has inflated quite a bit from the Platinum 50 and with the same internals, it should last quite a bit longer.

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All in all, Archos have delivered a solid set of devices that bring okay specs for good prices. While they’re not going to turn any heads or make up for that Galaxy Note II you couldn’t afford, they do come with stock Android and Archos have been good about updating their tablets in the past, so there’s nothing to suggest they won’t do the same here. The Carbon 35 is a strange device though, launching with Android 4.0 now is a little strange, considering the other devices run Android 4.1, it’s unlikely to get an update unfortunately. If you’re looking at these thinking they might make good choices for you, then head on over to Archos’ website and check out all the info on them.