There are seven different tablet series from Acer, each with its own number of models. Today the company announced two more devices; another model of the Iconia Tab 10 A3-A30, and the Iconia One 8 B1-820.
The new A3-A30, which uses Android 5.0 Lollipop, is considered to be the high-end 10-inch model for the series. However, Acer built it exclusively for educational purposes, so unless you're a student you won't be able to get your hands on it. It still has the same 1920 x 1200 resolution and IPS screen as the previous high-end model, the A3-A20FHD-K0CQ.
This new model also features a Gorilla Glass 4 screen, and it runs on an Intel Atom Z3735F quad-core processor (1.83 GHz). It has 2 GB of RAM, and there's a 2 MP camera on the front and a 5 MP camera on the rear. Storage starts at 16 GB of eMMC, but it can be upgraded to 32 or 64 GB. The tablet's battery is expected to last up to 7.5 hours.
On the other hand, the new 8-inch Iconia One 8 B1-820 is more of a mid-tier model within the Iconia One 8 series. Running Android 5.0 Lollipop, the tablet also has an IPS display.
It uses an Intel Atom Z3735G quad-core processor (1.83 GHz) and has 1 GB of RAM. Like the A3-A30, it also has two cameras, but the front camera is only 0.3 MP, while the rear camera is 5 MP. Storage starts at 16 GB of eMMC with the option to upgrade to 32 GB. Battery life is slightly longer on the B1-820 at 8.5 hours.
Both tablets also includes what Acer calls Precision Plus technology, which supposedly provides a "highly accurate touch experience." This is because the touch panel for both tablets has a higher density of touch sensors. According to Acer, most styluses (stylii?) today detect tips as thin as 5.5 mm. Precision Plus technology goes even lower, allowing tips as thin as 2 mm.
I saw a quick demo of this with a stylus provided by Acer on two tablets – one with Precision Plus and one without it. The stylus worked on the former, while it wasn't even detected on the tablet without Precision Plus. An Acer rep told me that Precision Plus will eventually become the standard for its tablet lineup (although not for its low-end devices).
Acer also showed off another feature on both tablets, a special coating that prevent smudges. I was shown another demo comparing the new coating to the old version, where a red marker was used to draw on both screens. The older version had a clear smudge of the marker, but with the new coating, it only appeared a small dots. It might not exactly be smudge-free, but at least it'll be easier to clean.
Of the two new tablets, the A3-A30 will arrive first, in May, and will cost $299.99. The B1-820 will come in July for $149.99. With these new devices, Acer expands its lineup across different price points. The Iconia Tab 10 series now has tablets from $199.99 to $299.99, while the Iconia One 8 models range from $129.99 to $159.99.
The variety of tablets means that customers can easily find a tablet that matches performance to budget, and with Precision Plus and the new anti-smudge coating, these new tablets will not only work with more writing utensils, but will also be (more) free of those annoying finger smudges.