(Whoo hoo, I got my first Android Tablet!)
So, I got the Archos 7 Android Tablet the couple days ago and I’ve had plenty time to play with it to give you a good hands-on review.
First, let me say the Archos 7 Android Tablet is a great portable media device that will let you surf the web, watch YouTube videos, and also play your favorite Avi, MOV, MP4, and even DivX movies.
Great Media Player, perhaps the best on the market
The highlight of Archos 7 is that it comes loaded with media encoders. In otherwise, it’s capable of playing any kind of video files no matter what the extension is, unlike iTunes, where you would have to encode it into a file that iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad can understand.
The Archos 7 is compatible with PC, Mac, and Linux. You can just plug it into your computer via a mini-USB cable and start dragging your favorite movie files. No need to worry about file formats!
I have an iPod Touch that I no longer use, it’s just a useless piece of slab to me because I have a ton of personal videos on my Canon point-and-shoot camera but I actually need a converter software to convert all of those video files. I simply have no time for that. (*Me jabbin’ at Apple*)
Average Multi-touch but Great Large 7-inch Screen
The Archos 7 comes with a “resistive” touchscreen, meaning it’s not the best multi-touch screen out there. But after using it for couple days, it’s not too bad and the keyboard is awfully good just because of the screen size.
You won’t expect multi-touch like on an iPhone, iPad, or Nexus One but it’s certainly not going to hurt your browsing experience too much because I have found that the large 7-inch screen allow you to view most websites without pinch-and-zoom.
Seriously though, I am tired of pinch-and-zooming on my Nexus One or the Palm Pre, the only reason you do that is because the LCD screen is too small.
With the larger 7-inch screen, the Archos 7 does a great job of letting you view websites without extra pinching movements.
No Flash? But SkyFire does a great job of streaming videos!
There’s no flash on the Archos 7 because I think it’s running Android 1.5 or 1.6. There’s no exact word on what Android version Archos 7 is running. (I couldn’t find it anywhere!)
That’s no problem though, in time, Archos should be upgrading the device to Android 2.1 or even 2.2.
You can download SkyFire on your Archos (it’s not in Archos Market) and pretty much view any video site including po*n.
Also, you can download YouTube player app to use the native browser.
Here’s a quick overview of SkyFire browser in the Archos 7:
Overall Experience for 3 days
I was actually expecting more from Archos 7, perhaps a “capacitative” touchscreen and faster speeds.
But after using it for 3 days, I found that the resistive touchscreen wasn’t a big problem because the screen was so much larger than my Nexus One, which has just 1/4 of its screen size.
I regularly use my Nexus One to browse the web when I am not in front of my desk but after buying an Archos 7, that “browsing” was replaced with the Archos 7. The large 7-inch screen makes me squint less, especially because I have really bad eyes and my eyes get irritable on small screens.
See screen size comparison of the Archos 7 and my Nexus One phone:
Don’t get me wrong, Nexus One is still a great smartphone I use when I am away from home but Archos 7 now becomes my favorite portable device to surf the web while I sit on my couch watching TV.
Archos 7 isn’t anything close to an iPad, in fact, it’s a completely different portable media player that’s also just 1/3 price of the cheapest iPad.
If you aren’t too huge about apps and you just want to surf the web, watch movies, Archos 7 is a great tablet device you can get for just $199.
Another great thing about Archos 7 is that it streams internet videos without any lag. That’s due to its media GPU processor that can handle better graphics than my Nexus One, the 32 bit DSP 430 MHz processor.
Here’s a quick video streaming comparison between my Archos 7 and Nexus One:
This device is a “media beast”. It’s not fast by any means but for media, you are going to love it.
There’s going to be better Android tablets coming out later this year but for those of you who don’t need all the shebang but want to just surf the web, watch videos, play DivX movies in the bed, get the Android Archos 7 Tablet here on Amazon for just $199.
(Very slim form factor, I like it.)
(mini USB, power jack, and 3.5mm for your earphones on the side.)
(The kickstand makes it awesome to bring it anywhere without extra hardware/tablet cases.)
(Archos 7 fits easily in your hand and also I found out it fits in my shorts pocket too.)
(Crisp clear 720P HD is the highlight of the Archos 7.)