Acer's trio of new tablets includes $149.99 Windows 8.1 8-inch tablet

Acer's trio of new tablets includes $149.99 Windows 8.1 8-inch tablet

Summary: The Iconia Tab 8 W joins other suddenly inexpensive Windows tablets hitting the market, while the Android-powered Iconia One 8 is available in 10 different color choices.


Microsoft promised us cheaper Windows tablets to better challenge Android on the low end, and as the IFA trade show in Berlin opens, that's certainly what we are getting. Already, Toshiba has unveiled a 7-inch Windows 8.1 slate for just $119, and now Acer has rolled out three new tablets that include a similarly inexpensive Windows offering.

With the Iconia Tab 8 W, Acer has created an 8-inch Windows tablet that is dramatically cheaper than its Iconia W3 predecessor from last year. While the W3's starting price was $379.99, the Tab 8 W checks in at just $149.99. That difference, in a nutshell, shows how Microsoft has shifted its OEM Windows 8.1 tablet strategy from competing with Apple's iPads to attacking cheaper Android tablets. (Of course, with its own Surface 3 tablet, Microsoft is headed in the opposite direction, holding to a premium price as it argues that the Surface is more of a laptop replacement.)

As expected for a budget tablet, the Tab 8 W doesn't feature premium specs, but does include an Intel Atom Z3735G quad-core Bay Trail processor, 1GB of RAM, and a 1,280x800 display. You also get a free year of access to Microsoft Office 365 Personal, though you may want to purchase the optional Acer Crunch Keyboard to get the most out of Word or Excel. Expect the Tab 8 W to hit shelves in November in North America and a month earlier elsewhere.

Acer hasn't abandoned Android as it rolls out its budget Windows tablet, as it's also launched a pair of slates using Google's mobile OS. The Iconia Tab 10 is designed for media consumption, as it offers a full 1080p HD 10.1-inch screen and Dolby Digital Plus sound. The display is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass and anti-fingerprint coating. The Tab 10 runs Android 4.4 KitKat and will be priced at $199 when it ships sometime this month.

While the Tab 10 is available in black or white, the new Iconia One 8 is being rolled in a full rainbow of 10 color choices, everything from yellow to purple. The One 8 also runs Android 4.4 KitKat, and though its 1,280x800 8-inch screen is not protected by Gorilla Glass, it does include the anti-fingerprint coating the Tab 10 sports and shares the same Bay Trail processor as the Tab 8 W. Oddly enough, the One 8 doesn't look like it will hit North American shores, but will run 149 euros across the pond when it's released in October.  

Topics: Mobility, Android, Tablets, Windows

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • JAiPRO

    Just another iPad rip off.
    • What tablets would look like without Apple:
      • Curious

        Odd how they happened to forget the Compaq TC1000:

        I do believe the iPad was a revolutionary product and brought some very important features to the table that allowed it to succeed where Windows tablets largely failed (Multi-touch screen, touch enabled OS written from the ground up, long battery life, instant on, thin and light). But articles like the one you linked to are disingenuous over-simplifications of what came before.
      • Tell me fanboy...

        ...what would the iPad mini look like without the smaller Android tablets Apple copied from?

        What would the iPhone 6 look like without the larger Android phones and the OS Apple copied from? (Are you absolutely sure your cult invented the notification center and many other features they copied from Android?)
    • Stupid fanboy...

      ...actually the iPad is a ripoff of Windows tablets that were on the market a decade before.

      As usual, you people are completely clueless.
  • Acer's trio of new tablets includes $149.99 Windows 8.1 8-inch tablet

    That is a great deal for a Microsoft Windows 8 tablet. These will make great Christmas gifts. The only problem would be the Acer branding. They aren't exactly known for their high quality hardware.
    • Old myth about Acer...

      New reality:

      And we all know that the Apple stats are skewed by the fact that their user are cultists who never admit they have issues, even when they do.
  • Windows 8.1

    Goes for $119.99 on Microsoft's own web site. Seems for these Tablets Microsoft must be giving it away. Guess that's better than having a pile of software laying around.
    • They ARE giving it away

      Made the news a while back, MS is giving away Win8.1 for any OEM making a device with a screen size of
      • Apparently, this forum doesn't allow "less than or equal to" symbols

        That last reply should have continued, screen size of 8 inches or under.

        But of course MS isn't worried at all about small Android tablets, yeah right.
  • I like the idea of a cheep windows tablet for light work

    I know what I want for Christmas.
    I never cared for android operating system Even my mother was not impressed with android tablet. Now we have a better options.
    • Not sure about that

      I have a Dell Venue 8 Pro and I love it. But it has twice the RAM, a faster CPU and 4 times the storage. Yeah, I know, it costs more than double. But I have reservations about windows 8 on an even smaller screen with only 1 gig of RAM and 16 gigs of storage, of which probably only 4-5 will be available to the user.

      But I'm not a stupid Apple fanboy, so I won't badmouth it until I actually see it and try it out.
      • Not so fast

        If I want shell out 200 or more I rather get a full blown laptop or desktop. I want what would be accessory to my PC. Not a PC replacement or a smartphone. I would like a GPS and map for my G-sale romps and maybe check facebook or hold a convention schedule app for many fan conventions I go to.
  • About Time

    $119 now that's a good price for a tablet.
    $149 is ok, who does not have a tablet by now?
    I have to give it to Apple marketing is everything.
  • 1gb of RAM -- upgradeable?

    If we can upgrade that Acer to have more RAM (2gb or better still, 4gb), then it probably will be useful.

    With only 1GB? Pagefile thrash-o-rama! It will be SLOOOOOOOW for all but the simplest tasks.

    My Verizon Samsung S4 phone has 2GB of ram on much more RAM-friendly Android.