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Tablets

Acer unleashes a pair of budget tablets

At an event in New York, Acer unveiled an 8-inch budget tablet and a 10-inch model geared toward classroom use.

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In addition to a slew of gaming monitors and laptops, Acer let two tablets out of the bag at an event in New York. The pair of tablets don't have much in common except for one glaring attribute: attractively low prices.

The 8-inch Iconia One starts at $149 (availability in the UK and Australia not announced, but that's £99 or AU$191 directly converted) and features a 1,280x800-pixel resolution IPS screen that boasts Acer's new Precision Plus technology, which purportedly improves the accuracy of the touchscreen. There's an optional stylus or you can use a "fine tip 2mm pencil" to write and navigate, according to Acer.

A colorful choice of cases for the 8-inch Acer. Sarah Tew/CNET

Running the latest Android operating system, Lollipop 5.0, the Iconia One 8 houses a quad-core Intel Atom, processor and 16GB or 32GB of internal storage. The front of the tablet has a 0.3-megapixel camera and the rear features a 5-megapixel rear camera with a wide angle for better group and scenery shots. The Iconia One 8 also offers cases in 10 colors, if you fancy a more personalized look for your gadgets.

Tablets aimed for educational spaces are getting more attention from manufacturers and, teaming up with the Google Education ecosystem, Acer is adding an affordable option to that crowd. The Iconia Tab 10 is priced at $299 (pending availability, that could be £198 or AU$384 directly converted) and rocks a 1,920x1,200-pixel resolution on a durable Gorilla Glass 4.0 display that offers the same Precision Plus technology as the Iconia One 8.

The Iconia Tab 10 features NFC for easy classroom set-up. Sarah Tew/CNET

The 10-inch Acer tablet packs a quad-core Intel Atom CPU, 2GB of RAM, NFC, Bluetooth 4.0, and 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB of internal storage, with an SD card slot expandable up to 64GB. The tablets are meant to be used during the entire school day and Acer claims that the battery life should last about 7.5 hours.

The Acer Iconia One 8 will hit stores in the United States in May and the Middle East, Europe and Africa in April. The Iconia Tab 10 will be available in May in North America, Middle East, Europe and Africa. Other international availability has yet to be announced.

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