Archos has unveiled its 3rd generation Android tablets with its new G9 series, which includes the 8-inch 80 G9 with 1024 x 768 pixel resolution and the 10.1-inch 101 G9 with 1280 x 800 pixel resolution. Powered by a dual-core OMAP 4 processor (1.5GHz ARM Cortex A9) and running Android 3.1 (Honeycomb), the G9 series also offers a first for Android tablets - the option of 16 GB of flash storage or a 250 GB HDD.

Archos claims the G9 series' 1.5 GHz OMAP 4 processor reduces web page loading times by up to 50 percent compared to tablets powered by a 1GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 processor. The extra grunt also provides smooth playback of 1080p H264 video, which can be outputted to a HDTV via the mini-HDMI port or watched on the device with the built-in kickstand. Other specs include 1 GB of RAM, 720p front facing camera, GPS, G-Sensor, compass, Bluetooth 2.1+ EDR, Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n), built-in microphone, full-size USB port, micro USB port, Adobe Flash support and access to the Android Market.

Making use of the Seagate Momentus Thin hard drive, which is just 7 mm thick, the 250 GB HDD models will be 3 mm thicker than the 16 GB Flash models. They will also be heavier - 465 g and 599 g (17 oz and 21.9 oz) for the 8-inch Flash and HDD models respectively and 649 g and 755 g (23.8 oz and 27.7 oz) for the 10.1-inch models. There's no word on whether the Flash and HDD models will differ in price, but the 16GB Flash model will include a microSD card slot, while the 250GB HDD model won't.

Archos also doesn't differentiate between the Flash and HDD models in terms of battery life, simply stating up to 36 hours of music playback, up to 7 hours of video playback and up to 10 hours of Internet surfing, but we'd expect the HDD models to chew through the electrons a bit quicker than the Flash models. Seagate also offers its Momentus Thin HDDs in 160GB and 320GB capacities, but it's unclear whether the Archos tablets offer HDD upgradability.

Instead of extending the range by offering separate Wi-Fi and 3G models, Archos gives users the option of purchasing a 3G stick if or when they need it. The specially designed Archos GP 3G stick slots perfectly into the recessed full-sized USB-port on the rear and accepts any standard SIM card. Archos also offers its own Archos Connect SIM that lets users add more credit to subscription or pay-as-you-go data plans straight from the tablet.

Dimensions and weight

  • 80 G9 Flash series: 226 mm x 155.3 mm x 11.7 mm (8.90 x 6.11 x 0.46 inch) - 465 g (17 oz)
  • 80 G9 Hard Drive series: 226 mm x 155.3 mm x 14.7 mm (8.90 x 6.11 x 0.58 inch) - 599g (21.9 oz)
  • 101 G9 Flash series: 276 mm x 167.3 mm x 12.6 mm (10.86 x 6.59 x 0.50 inch) - 649g (23.8 oz)
  • 101 G9 Hard Drive series: 276 mm x 167.3 mm x 15.6 mm (10.86 x 6.59 x 0.61 inch) - 755g (27.7 oz)

Archos will release its G9 series tablets at the end of September starting at US$279 for the 80 G9 and $349 for the 101 G9.