Acer has unveiled a new addition to its Iconia tablet series in the oddly familiar shape of the Iconia Tab A200. The budget-friendly A200 shares much of its hardware profile with the company's Iconia Tab A500 launched earlier in the year, although the former lacks a rear-facing camera and will come in 8GB and 16GB varieties only. When it first hits the shelves, the new tablet will run on Android 3.2 but Acer says that as soon as Google's next flavor of Android (codenamed Ice Cream Sandwich) is released in January 2012, the new tablet will be switched to the new operating system - with a free upgrade to Android 4.0 for existing A200 owners.
Although Acer says that its new Android tablet will be easy on the wallet, the company hasn't actually released any pricing information. As such, the high point of the announcement seems to be the Acer Ring interface overlay that provides easy access to apps from any screen - appearing when needed and hidden when not. The Iconia Tab A200 also includes social media consolidation with Acer's SocialJogger, placing networking feeds from portals like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr into one location.
The new tablet will be available in either red or gray, with a patterned soft-touch rear face. It will feature a 10.1-inch, 1280 x 800 resolution multitouch display, an NVIDIA Tegra 2 dual core A9 processor running at 1GHz supported by 1GB RAM, and a 2 megapixel webcam in the front bezel. There'll be either 8GB or 16GB of onboard eMMC solid state storage - with microSD expansion, a full sized USB port, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1 with EDR, and built-in GPS.
The device can also wirelessly share content with other DNLA-compliant devices via Acer's clear.fi technology, and users in the U.S. and Canada will get access to Netflix. The 3260 mAh/24.1 W Lithium Polymer battery is said to be good for 400 hours on standby or 8 hours of video playback.
The Iconia Tab A200 is set for a Q1 release in the UK, with pricing yet to be been finalized. An announcement on U.S. availability is due in the next few weeks.
Acer has also told us that a product page will appear shortly. Until then, the tablet's notable features are overviewed in the following promo video from Acer: