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Android tab, media player half-off on Groupon

Sixty-five bucks gets you a bare-bones iPod Touch competitor, while $129 buys an Android tab with decent specs.

The floor for tablet pricing has fallen out again. Today, Groupon is offering an Android-based tablet for only $129 through its Groupon Goods program.

Granted, it's not the most drool-worthy tab out there. Groupon is selling a limited number of Skytex Primer Pocket media players and Skypad Alpha tablets at a 50 percent discount. The Primer Pocket is a 4.3-inch Android-based iPod Touch knock-off running FroYo (Android 2.2), while the Skypad Alpha is a 7-inch slate that comes with Android 2.3 Gingerbread.


The Primer Pocket is available through the deal for $65, which may be half off retail, but the bare-bones 4GB Wi-Fi device with a 600MHz processor and 256MB of RAM can easily be had on Amazon and elsewhere for around $83.

Los Angeles-based Skytex also makes the Skypad Alpha tablet, which normally retails for $199 (currently selling for $155 on Amazon) but is priced at $129 for the limited-time deal. Its specs include a Freescale i.MX515 Cortex-A8 processor (800MHz +200MHz DSP); Flash; OpenGL; 512MB of RAM; 4GB of storage that's expandable to 32GB; a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera; Bluetooth; and Wi-Fi.

Skytex definitely qualifies as a no-name device maker. It's hard to even find reviews of its products, although they seem to rate favorably on Amazon. If you absolutely need a tablet right now and you don't have much to spend, this could be your best option. But if you can wait even a week or two, something better might come around. If you can wait until Black Friday, you're almost guaranteed to get something better.

Let's just hope these devices work better than the Skytex Web site, which has been returning all kinds of errors and broken links today, presumably as thousands of Groupon subscribers simultaneously try to answer the question "What the hell is Skytex?"