Android tablets for just $100 later this year, according to Via Technologies

Android tablets for just $100 later this year, according to Via Technologies

Summary: Via Technologies thinks it's found a way to compete against the iPad—not just a lower price, but a iPod Nano price. The processor company tells Bloomberg Businessweek that a handful of tablets using its technology will be available in the second half of this year for prices ranging from $100 to $150.

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Via Technologies thinks it's found a way to compete against the iPad—not just a lower price, but a iPod Nano price. The processor company tells Bloomberg Businessweek that a handful of tablets using its technology will be available in the second half of this year for prices ranging from $100 to $150. Yes, you read that right.

Even better, the devices will run the Android OS, which is shaping up to be a more intriguing competitor than Windows 7 in the tablet space. According to Via, these specific tablets, which will be built by its Chinese manufacturing partners, will run on an ARM-based chip. No specs have been officially announced, but Engadget did get a chance to gander at the tablets at Computex, which ran Android 1.6 on a (Via subsidiary) WonderMedia WM8505 ARM 9-based processor using a 7-inch resistive touchscreen instead of a larger multi-capacitive display like the one the iPad uses.

Needless to say, these budget models aren't going to provide the performance and all-around polish to grapple with the Apple tablet head on, but the price point becomes extremely intriguing if you have children looking to play casual games and watch videos on-the-go. They should also help to tug prices down for all tablets, which is never a bad thing.

Would you consider buying one of these low-priced Android tablets, despite the more limited feature set? If so, let us know why in the Comments section.

[Photo: Engadget]

Topics: Laptops, Hardware, Mobility, Tablets

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8 comments
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  • I just might buy one

    It might make a nice e-book reader - and cheaper than a Kindle. Go Cyrix!
    Roger Ramjet
  • Definite market, but not for me.

    I wouldn't want one, but I think a low-priced device like this is more likely to kill off netbooks than the higher-end variants such as the iPad and whatever else comes out.
    Tom-Tech
  • I'll buy one at that price point (NT)

    NT
    MagicMoment
  • I think it was yesterday or the day before I said this was possible

    ...on a cnnmoney article about the one laptop per child tablet. Is that a solar cell in the corner? Why aren't we using a solar cells on all these devices? How long can a Kindle run on a single charge? How long would a calculator sized cell extend its life? I don't know, but I'm betting it would be effective. Especially in third world countries where access to power is low to nil, a little solar cell augmenting the power and charging the battery would be the obvious way to go. It couldn't increase the cost that much, cause I can buy a solar calculator at the dollar store. (so at worst a 1% increase in cost.) A kid in a third world country, who doesn't know when he's going to eat next, doesn't need top spec. They need to be able to play video (not HD, just any video) so they don't need as many teachers, and be able to access knowledge databases such as wikipedia, and be able to do some writing, take tests and quizes, and thats about it. I HIGHLY endorse http://www.khanacademy.org/ The best thing we can do to boost a poor economy is get as many people as we can, basic: reading, writing and math skills. From there a person can educate themselves for the rest of their life (or make the rest of us t-shirts for pennies on the dollar if they choose to do so.)
    shadfurman
  • I will wait for full test on the products

    If it is cheap an flimsy, children will tear it apart in no time.

    Most of all I will need to know the functionality, will it be WiFi capable, do I have to pay a phone company (any) to use this, how do you down load the apps? Many questions need to be answered before a decision to buy is concidered.
    DadsPad
  • RE: Android tablets for just $100 later this year, according to Via Technologies

    For $100 cant go wrong. It becomes a disposable appliance like a toaster. Buy a new model every year for better features.
    mstrsfty
  • Automatic Kindle competitors

    With amazon announcing that they are working on an android version of their kindle reading software these could be serious competitors to the Kindle's that are sold by amazon.
    tommcd64
  • good idea about android

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