CNET First Look
Acer Iconia Tab A501 4G (AT&T)The Acer Iconia Tab A501 4G (AT&T) is the A500 with HSPA+ connectivity at a very competitive price compared with other 4G tablets; however, its adherence to Android 3.0 limits its appeal.
-Back in April, Acer released it first Honeycomb tablet, the Iconia Tab A500, while this may look as it's the same tablet because for all intents and purposes it is. Acer has added a SIM card, given it 4G connectivity though AT&T HSPA+ Network and are calling it the A501. Hi, I'm Eric Franklin and this is the first look at the Acer Iconia Tab A501. Like the A500, the A501 comes with a 5-megapixel camera on the back and a 2-megapixel camera on the front. It also includes tablet mainstays like an accelerometer, gyroscope, GPS, and a dual core NVIDIA Tegra 2 Processor. The tablet feels fairly heavy and although includes full USB, a mini HDMI port and micro SD is not really enough to earn it heft. The 10.1-inch screen has a 1280 x 800 resolution when unfortunately its viewing angle specially from the bottom can't match the viewing angles of IPS screens like the iPad 2 or Asus Transformer. Unfortunately, Acer/AT&T shifts A501 with android 3.0.1 and seemingly as a result, the tablet has trouble playing high bit rate videos. This wasn't a problem with any of the tablets running 3.1 or later however. The A501 is essentially the A500 with 4G and a no commitment price of 480 bucks for the 16 gigabyte version and 550 bucks for the 32 gigabyte version about 100 bucks more or so than the 8500. For the price of a 2 year contract, AT&T offers the tablet for 350 bucks, the lowest initial cost of any 4G honeycomb tablet yet. The makes the A501 the cheapest 4G Honeycomb tablet currently on the market, but it's adherence to android 3.0 is relatively low screen quality and its hefty design ultimately makes it the least appealing of the 4G Tablets. Still, it's the cheapest. If that's your deciding factor and you absolutely need a 4G tablet right now, it's not a bad deal. If you can wait though, we recommend given it some time to see how the 4G Tablet landscape develops over the next few months. Once again, I'm Erik Franklin and this has been the first look at the Acer Iconia Tab A501 4G with AT&T.