Alcatel gets competitive, announces three new Android 4.2 tablets at budget prices (hands-on)

 
January 7, 2013 5:00 AM PST / Updated: January 9, 2013 3:59 PM PST

LAS VEGAS--With the success of tablets like the Nexus 7 and the iPad Mini, all signs point to going small for a successful tablet debut. That at least seems to be the thinking behind Alcatel's unveiling of three new, small tablets for the U.S. market.

First is the One Touch Evo7 HD, a 7-inch tablet that comes in Wi-Fi, 3G, and 4G configurations. The 3G and 4G versions each come with a removable SIM card module allowing users to easily upgrade from Wi-Fi-only to cellular, or from 3G to 4G.

The tablet also features a 1,280x800-pixel IPS screen, a microSD slot, and a Micro-USB port. The Evo7 HD will ship with Android 4.2, a 1.6GHz dual-core CPU with a quad-core GPU, a 3-megapixel rear-facing camera, and a VGA front-facing camera.

Rounding out the specs is 1GB of RAM, 4GB of storage, and Bluetooth 4.0. The Wi-Fi model will be priced at $179. And the 3G and 4G versions with removable storage will come out at $249 and $349, respectively.

This is a nonworking prototype of the Alcatel One Touch Evo 7 HD. Look for more coverage of the Alcatel HD family of tablets soon. Eric Franklin/CNET

The second tablet is another 7-incher with a 1,280x800-pixel screen, the One Touch Tab7 HD. The tablet is lighter and a bit thinner than the Evo7 HD, and aside from housing 8GB of storage and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, and Bluetooth 2.0, features identical specs. This one, however, is Wi-Fi only. The Tab 7 HD will be priced at $149.

Finally, Alcatel unveiled its 8-inch Tab8 HD. The tablet is obviously a bit larger than the Tab7 HD, and aside from a downgraded 1,024x768-pixel resolution, is identical to the Tab7 HD in specs. The Tab8 HD will release at $179.

All three tablets are scheduled for release in the third quarter. Also, Alcatel assured me that if Google upgrades past Jelly Bean before release, it will update each tablet's OS to the latest version.

I expect to get more hands-on time with these devices later this week, so expect more pictures and impressions soon.

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About The Author

Eric Franklin is a section editor covering how to and tablets. He's also co-host of CNET's do-it-yourself and how-to show, The Fix and is a 20-year tech industry veteran.