Asus announces $149 MeMO Pad 7-inch Android budget tablet

Asus announces $149 MeMO Pad 7-inch Android budget tablet

Summary: Following in Acer's footsteps, Asus releases a dirt-cheap tablet running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean but with meager specs.

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TOPICS: Tablets, Android
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The downward pressure on tablet prices for companies not named Apple continues. Last week, Acer officially announced its Iconia B1-A71, a 7-inch Android slate that would cost $149 at the most -- and as little as $99 in some parts of the world. Now Asus is joining the race for the bottom with the MeMO Pad.

Likewise priced at $149, the MeMO Pad includes a 1,024x600 7-inch screen and 16GB of storage and runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. It's also available in a choice of white, gray, or pink colors. Google Play is pre-installed for a full array of Android apps, though Asus has also bundled a handful of its own programs and throws in 5GB of online storage through its WebStorage service.

In addition to the pedestrian resolution on its display, the MeMO Pad has to cut corners in some other ways to meet its aggressive price point, In particular, it uses a VIA WM8950 processor, which features just a single ARM Cortex-A9 CPU core along with a ARM Mali-400 GPU.

How much a weaker chip will impact the everyday performance of the MeMO Pad remains to be seen, but at least we won't have long to find out. Asus says it will be releasing the tablet sometime this month. Do you think it will be worth the low price?

[Via Engadget]

Topics: Tablets, Android

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16 comments
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  • Hmm

    Why do you feel that using the Mali400 is cutting corners. The chip set has some juice but, Tegra 3 has all the game support.

    Honestly, if this were a Tegra device I would be all over it but, Nexus 7 is still king.
    slickjim
    • More Android Tablets For 2013

      One other Android tablet maker worth a look at in 2013 is Ainol Electronics - which recently introduced a number of impressive, well-priced Android tablets and is also noted for winning Runner-Up for "Best Tablet of the Year" at CES 2012--

      One of the first resellers to carry the new Ainol - Novo brand tablets is a site called TabletSprint - and this week the Novo 7 VENUS launched - a 7 inch tablet with a QUAD CORE processor for $149 that takes on the Google Nexus 7 and other competitors for a lot less and offers a lot more-- with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS, a high resolution 1280x800 IPS screen, 16GB memory, a 4000 mAH battery, both front and rear cameras, a MicroSD memory card slot for unlimited storage, Google Play with access to 400K+ Apps, a MicroUSB port for connection to printers and other electronic devices, HDMI - to view personal videos and to download movies and watch in full 1080p (HD) on to a large screen TV, WiFi, Ethernet, and an option for 3G/4G connection. It's also a great gaming device with its high resolution screen and motion gaming sensor. The site TabletSprint also offers a 7" Compact Case with built-in Keyboard ($22) which easily transforms a tablet into a mini-laptop.

      TabletSprint offers a few other brand new models with most launching in January, including the Novo 10 Hero - a full-size 10 inch tablet packed with impressive features for only $219 -

      TabletSprint also includes $25 in quality Bonus Apps with all tablets available through their site - both these new models and a few others featured are certainly worth checking out and comparing to other major brands--
      Bill Farnsworth
  • Shooting at their own foot

    They are cannibalizing the sales of their higher value products by selling these cheap stuffs
    Owlll1net
    • Cannibalizing?

      Cannibalizing sales of higher value products?
      Not in my case (and many other people I know)
      I will NOT pay $300, 400, 500 or whatever for a tablet.
      But I will definitely consider spending $150.
      From a well-known vendor, such as Asus or Acer.
      radu.m
  • Not a problem

    I personally own 2 cheap generic tablets like that, but from a knock-off company.

    These little things do everything the big ones do... everything.
    They just somethimes lag or run a little slower... but really... they do the job just fine.
    beaner11119
  • Do you think it will be worth the low price?

    Depends on the CPU specs and installed ram. I have one of the original Samsung Galaxy tablets and its hardware limitations certainly are reflected in its performance. I do think having the addition of a GPU would really inprove performance. Also, running Android 4.1 is a big plus. I have a Galaxy Nexus phone and the difference between that and my tablet is considerable. Its not just the performance; The OS has evolved into a much smoother and intuitive interface. Another plus in my mind is this tablet is built by ASUS.
    (I have to admit a prejudice for ASUS products; every computer I have sports an ASUS Motherboard, by choice :-)
    My guess is this new tablet is probably going to be 3 or 4 times the tablet I currently have and will be well worth the money.
    fixpcpaul
    • I doubt it will be worth the price.

      With a slower chip, i doubt it will be worth the price at all. People expect some speed and performance from their electronics.

      -j
      jeffgoldstein1000
    • Asus blind faith on devices is ill advised

      I too have had some great Asus MB's, but I also have a first generation Asus Oplay (media player). Their support of the device has been pretty shoddy. With an Android device, unless you have a really big user population I would think you will be orphaned pretty quickly. Either way, I would not expect too much.
      Schoolboy Bob
  • Depends what you need it for!

    I have a $100 knock-off with 7" screen that has front and back cameras (poor quality but useable for Skype), sd slot (which I added a 32 gig card) and a very functional GPS. It has performed very well, the slower speed isn't a big problem and it's very portable. I'm not as worried about losing it because I don't have a lot in it. I do think that it is a great navigation tool and I wouldn't waste money on a dedicated GPS. I also own a Asus TF700 which cost $500. Do I think the difference in cost is worth it, probably not. It's faster, but not earth shaking faster. It has a nicer screen (also bigger) and high quality cameras, but not a necessity really. GPS functions well but it's a bit bulky to travel with an a day to day basis. It's a luxury tablet that's nice to use but I'm not sure I would buy it again after using both. I use them both because my wife can have one and I can have one. I don't think I would buy a low end 7" without GPS. I can plan trips at home and then toss it in the vehicle, check e-mails on the road using wi-fi at Tim Hortons, MacDonalds etc. Skype on the road (wi-fi again), so it is very useful to me. But again, it depends on what you use it for, but I do think the low end tablets are great tools for the regular people who don't want to put down a pile of cash and that's where the market is biggest, so I can see all the tablet makers wanting a piece of that action.
    Laurentian Enterprises
    • i agree

      A good post that mirrors my experience. I still use my generic 3g tablet daily for media and as a hotspot yet I've got a nexus 7 that I take everywhere. I just bought my parents a $150 generic Kogan 10" with similar specs to my old 2010 HTC Desire handset. (1 ghz single core, 512mb RAM etc) They love it. It's slow compared to the nexus 7 but it's fast enough to be a reasonable device. It makes a value case that will attract first time users who balk at Apple pricing.
      John in Brisbane
  • Unless your an Apple fan?

    Really unless your drinking the Apple juice and are convinced nothing can be as good as a Apple product. Much of the tablet's sold will be of this kind of price range. Most consumer don't need a $500 tablet to be satisfied. I like my Nexus 7 and having also used a iPad 2 I could never see investing that much more for a iPad over a Nexus7. Not as I say unless your married to Apple's ecosystem.
    jscott418-22447200638980614791982928182376
  • Follow the money

    Any idea of the revenue stream to google from each android device?
    Looks like a stroke of genius to me. Get ads in as many hands as possible for the lowest cost.
    Probably no cost at all, just an upfront investment.
    Bring it on.
    plow boy 6690
  • Yes and no

    It all depends on where you are on the feeding line. I also have a 99$ Chuwi VW V7" and the Surface RT. For me the difference is like day and night and the difference might to a great extent be subjective. The Surface is just smoother, faster and it gives me the feeling of endless possibilities. The Chuwi is excellent for what it is and truly amazing for 99$. It runs JB 4.0.1 and the hardware configuration is just a hairbreadth below the Nexus and superior to the MeMO.
    primartcloud
  • what other hardware functions?

    Only screen resolution, CPU and OS level were revealed in the post. Just because it has Google Play doesn't mean it can run every app. I could see me investing in a low end tablet as a one-trick pony for a specific use. But it all depends on whether or not this tablet could do whatever single trick I had in mind.
    Jim Johnson
  • sounds right

    a set top box with a screen for $150 seems like what most people need for net access
    mswift1
  • translater

    please let me know this tab is supporting Google translate or not because i was tried but not like a windows specifically have to know how to pronouncing the word while i am translating
    Surya Kiruba