Archos has been quite a few times in the news lately, mainly because they tend to release new tablets so often. Today they’ve unveiled another one, that comes with the catchy name of Archos 101 XS 2. Joking aside, they should probably start naming their tablets with something that’s a little more memorable, otherwise people won’t even know what they bought, let alone know what to ask for when they go in stores looking for it, or tell their friends about it. Everyone knows what an iPad is, or even what a Nexus 7 is, at least in the Android world, but does anyone know what an Archos 101 XS 2 is? Probably not.
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The new tablet comes with 1.6GHz quad-core CPU, 2 GB of RAM, 10.1″ display, 1280×800 resolution, 16 GB of storage, and a “Coverboard” magnetic keyboard, that clips onto the device. The tablet comes with an already one year old Android 4.2.2, so I wouldn’t expect KitKat on it anytime soon, if ever.
Most companies that sell mid-range or low-end devices, don’t typically offer more than one upgrade, if at all, and Archos is probably no exception. The somewhat good news here is that if they do decide to upgrade it at least once, there may be a good chance they will upgrade it directly to Android 4.4 KitKat, rather than Android 4.3, since the device is just now coming out. But that depends entirely on whether they even planned to upgrade it, and if they did, on whether they’ve already started working on an update before releasing it (which would obviously be based on Android 4.3).
The tablet will cost £249.99 from Archos’ own web store, so you may wonder why does Archos release yet another mid-range tablet, if they’ve already released several of them this year? I think the special feature of this tablet is that magnetic keyboard cover, which basically turns it into a hybrid, that you can get for a mid-range price.
The concept is actually pretty intriguing because unlike the Transformer and HP’s Slatebook X2, you don’t need hinges to “catch” the tablet, and hold it together with the keyboard. It will fit nicely on the keyboard when you want to work on it as on a laptop, and then you can pack them together, and they will stay close together, while you carry them with you wherever you go. That’s actually a pretty nifty idea, that I hope catches on with more tablet OEM’s that are interested in making such hybrids.