Hands on: Acer Iconia B1 review

Cheap tablets have rarely been this good

What is a hands on review?
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Product features

  • Screen Resolution : 1024 x 600
  • Processor Core : Dual-core (2 Core)

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  • Cheap
  • Fairly speedy
  • Very nice design


  • Low screen resolution

In addition to the update to the Iconia A1, Acer is also updating the super affordable Iconia B1, with the Iconia B1-720 Wi-Fi version and the Iconia B1-721 Wi-Fi and 3G model.

Both are already available at price points of €129 Euros and USD $130 (around GBP £105, AUD $196). There is also a cited Euro price for the 3G version at €179 (which works out around GBP £147, USD $245, AUD $272).

That slides it in below 7-inch rivals including Tesco's Hudl.

Acer B1 720 review

The new version of the B1 – which retains a staggeringly low price point –doubles up on the original's RAM and on-board storage at 1GB and 16GB respectively.

A microSD slot enables you to add up to 32GB of storage, while there's a micro USB port on the bottom alongside the headphone jack.

Acer B1 720 review

A dual-core 1.3GHz Mediatek MT6572 processor makes the device seem perfectly zippy.

Acer B1 720 review

Acer says the B1 is aimed squarely at young or new tablet users or at families who want an extra device for use by the kids.

Acer Iconia B1 review

We liked the textured back cover – interestingly, this is a feature that the latest version of the Nexus 7 has decided to discard. However, we find that a textured back is lot easier to hold onto than a smooth finish.

Acer B1 720 review

The screen is bright and clear with 10-point touch, but lacks is terms of resolution (600 x 1,024) compared to slightly more expensive 7-inch competitors like the Nexus 7. In terms of accessories, Acer has debuted a new 5.3mm-thick Bluetooth Crunch Keyboard in a soft synthetic leather cover that folds out and can also be used as a stand.

Acer Iconia B1 review

The lack of definition is a little clearer close up.

Acer Iconia B1 review

Early verdict

We really like the new version of the B1. And for the money it's superb and welll-designed. The only thing is that we're not too keen on the screen resolution. But then, if you're worried about that, you need to spend a little more on a tablet like the Nexus.

Acer Iconia B1 review

What is a hands on review?

'Hands on reviews' are a journalist's first impressions of a piece of kit based on spending some time with it. It may be just a few moments, or a few hours. The important thing is we have been able to play with it ourselves and can give you some sense of what it's like to use, even if it's only an embryonic view. For more information, see TechRadar's Reviews Guarantee.

Tech Specs

Product TypeTablet
Green CompliantYes
Flash Memory Capacity8 GB
Processor ManufacturerMediaTek
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeNo
Maximum Battery Run Time5 Hour
Finger Print ReaderNo
Backlight TechnologyLED
Product FamilyICONIA B
Front Camera/WebcamYes
Operating System PlatformAndroid
Processor ModelMT8111
Operating SystemAndroid
Brand NameAcer
Form FactorSlate
Processor Speed1.30 GHz
Screen Size17.8 cm (7")
Number of Cells1-cell
Screen Resolution1024 x 600
Standard Memory1 GB
Weight (Approximate)315 g
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityRoHS, WEEE
Memory Card ReaderYes
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11b/g/n
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Height199 mm
Width122.3 mm
Depth10.7 mm
Screen ModeWSVGA
Memory TechnologyDDR3L SDRAM
Product SeriesB
ManufacturerAcer, Inc
Product ModelB1-720-81111G00nkr
Product NameICONIA B1-720-81111G00nkr Tablet
Product LineICONIA
Aspect Ratio128:75
Manufacturer Part NumberNT.L3MEK.001
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.acer.co.uk
Marketing InformationIdeal companion

Whether you're waiting for the train, sitting on the bus or relaxing in the coffee shop, the Iconia B Series makes each moment better. It's easy to hold in one hand and feels snug in your palm. About the same size as a paperback book, the 7" screen is ideal for reading.

Fits your life on the go

The Iconia B Series makes the journey as rewarding as the destination. At just 7" and about 320 grams, this tablet is small enough to slip easily into your commuting bag, yet big enough to provide a fine view of your favorite media. Read ebooks and magazines, watch videos, play games -- and enjoy every moment!

More from the Manufacturer

Package Contents
  • ICONIA B1-720-81111G00nkr Tablet
  • AC Adapter