Google's Nexus 7 excited the budget tablet space, forcing other manufacturers to compete on features on price. And it's telling that this year's CES has been relatively devoid of new Android tablets. One of the few exceptions is Acer, which announced its new Iconia B1 tablet this week. U.S. pricing has yet to be announced, but in the UK it'll sell for £99, a full £60 less than the cheapest Nexus 7.
When designing a tablet at this price point, there are some corners that need to be cut. The B1 is a plasticky device with a fairly low-quality 1024x600 LCD display, and a rather odd beveled pattern around the back. It's not a premium product, but something designed to offer a basic Android experience at the lowest possible price point. Its size and weight is roughly comparable to that of the Nexus 7.
Inside is a Mediatek 1.2GHz dual-core CPU and 512MB of RAM, which copes with running Jelly Bean fairly well considering it's far from bleeding edge hardware, although we noticed some lag and stuttering during our time with a CES demo unit. There's 8GB of internal storage available out of the box, expandable through the tablet's microSD slot.
The Acer Iconia B1 is set to become available from late January. U.S. pricing has yet to be revealed, but in the eurozone it's expected to retail for under €130.
We've got more photos after the break.