Following the announcement of the Google Nexus 7 tablet, Archos is the first budget tablet vendor to follow up with its own version of a $250 tablet.
The Archos 97 Carbon is the first member of the company's new Elements series, and comes with a 9.7-inch, 1024x768 pixel 5x IPS multitouch screen. Future models will be released as 7- and 8-inch products. Just like the Nexus 7, and, other than most previous tablets in the $250-and-below class, the 97 Carbon has full access to Google Play.
The device is slightly thicker than an iPad (11.4 versus 9.7 mm), but weighs less (620 versus 652 grams) than the Apple device. The hardware includes an ARM Cortex-A8 1 GHz processor, 1 GB RAM and 16 GB of Flash memory for storage. There is a microSD slot to expand the storage by up to 32 GB. The 97 Carbon comes standard with a front and back camera (0.3 and 2.0 MP).
The tablet runs Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and is promised to be powerful enough to run 1080p videos.
Of course, tablets did not suddenly get a lot cheaper, and with this tablet there are certain compromises compared to the more expensive $400-class devices. The screen resolution is clearly on the low-end and features such as a GPS sensor are missing.