Archos’ speciality these days is the production of budget Android tablets, and the Archos 101 XS – part of its Gen10 XS Series – is well priced for a 10.1in tablet.
You get plenty for your money, as the
tablet comes with a keyboard cover in
the box. When you need to do some
typing, it docks neatly into this, with
a small plastic arm to prop it up.
When you’re done, the cover snaps
magnetically onto the front of the
tablet, neatly protecting the screen. It’s
an elegant-looking solution.
However, when it comes to build
quality, the 101 XS fails to impress. It’s noticeably less robust than the Asus
Memo Pad FHD 10. The volume and
power buttons in particular feel flimsy,
and we’re not surewe’d feel confident
putting the bundled keyboard to
extended use. Its tiny keys are too
light and lacking in feedback to be
comfortable for longer typing sessions.
We found it frustratingly fiddly.
A far bigger problem for Archos than
the keyboard, though, is the 101 XS’s
display. The resolution is a bog-standard
800 x 1,280, and quality is well below par.
Brightness peaks at only 282cd/m2 and,
although the contrast is excellent, the
fact it’s anMVA panel means text and It’s
graphics blur noticeably as you swipe
and scroll your way around.Worse still,
it has a noticeably grainy look to it.
Performance wasn’t very good,
either, with below-average scores
in our tech tests. Battery life is also
unremarkable: it lasted 8hrs 2mins in
the looping video test, which is a long
way behind the best.
All in all, the 101 XS isn’t bad value for
money, especially considering the free
keyboard cover. It’s well connected, too,
with a microSD slot and a mini-HDMI
output. However, plasticky build and a
poor screen meanwe’d spend our