Can there be such a thing as a good cheap Android tablet? Has Ice Cream Sandwich really leveled the playing field so that cheaper hardware can run it smoothly? Ever since the “tablets” have become a must-have item, it seems as if every electronics manufacturer on the face of this earth is trying to get their hands on some of the market share. That’s right, Sony, HTC, Samsung, Motorola, Lenovo and even Amazon have stepped up and produced Android tablets. However, no matter how many Android tablets the manufacturers push at us, they all seem to fall very short of the iPad. So why do people still buy them and why are they still being made you ask?


Both iPads have been set at a $500 starting price, and that is just for the most basic model. Android tablets have come out with price tags as low at $79! In response, Apple would probably say something along the lines of “you get what you pay for”. But we tend to look at the price difference the same way Amazon does:

So without further ado, here are your top 10 Ice Cream Sandwich tablets of 2012 that won’t break your piggy bank:

Don’t forget to pick your favorite and let us know why in the comments at the bottom!

NOVO7 Paladin

Ainovo took the world by storm last year when it was announced they were releasing a sub-$100 tablet. And if that was not enough, it would be one of the first tablets to run Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0). However, the tablet was no where to be found until now. The tablet that made an in person appearance at CES will only cost you $89 for a taste of Ice Cream Sandwich.
Note: Upon purchasing the Paladin, shipping to the Eastern United States turned out to be around $60. This brings the overall cost of the tablet up to $149. Additionally, it has a MIPS processor inside, so many apps in the Android Market will not function properly.

Price: $89
Screen Size: 7″ HD LCD
Resolution: 800 x 480
Processor: 1GHz Ingenic JZ4770
Memory: 512 MB RAM
GPU: GC860 core with 3D rendering upgrade
Storage: 8GB/16GB
Camera(s): No Camera
Battery: Built-in 4000 mAh lithium-polymer battery (8 hours of Web Surfing)
Release Date: Buy Now!

Viewsonic Viewpad e70

Now that the creators of the Novo7 have snuck a $60 shipping fee in, the sub-$100 ICS tablet isn’t so sub-$100. On January 10th, Viewsonic announced that they would be making the ViewPad E70. This 7″ tablet is aimed at consumers who want the ultimate value while still being able to attain Google’s latest Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Although the device has been shown off in public, some of the specifications are still up in the air or remain unknown.

Price: $169.99
Screen Size: 7″
Resolution: 800 x 480
Processor: 1GHz processor
Memory: Still Unknown (Most likely 1GB of RAM)
Storage: 4GB (Up to 32GB Micro SD slot)
Camera(s): Front-Facing Camera
Battery: Still Unknown
Release Date: Late Q1 (Late March?)

Archos 80 G9

When you think of tablets, you probably don’t think of Archos. However, even before the “low-cost” tablets came into play, the Archos 80 G9 had always offered the same incredible specs for a fraction of the price of the other guys. And now, to sweeten the deal even more on the almost unknown tablet, Archos is upgrading the G9 tablets (80 and 101) to Ice Cream Sandwich.

Price: $299.99
Screen Size: 8″
Resolution: 1024 x 768
Processor: OMAP™ 4 smart dual-core ARM CORTEX A9 from 1GHz to 1.2GHz
Memory: 512MB
Storage: 8/16GB (Additional microSD slot)
Camera(s): 720p front camera
Battery: Internet navigation time  up to 10 hrs
Release Date: February to March

A full chart of the Archos G9 tablet variations thanks to

Archos Generation 9 devices
Model Screen size
Aspect ratio
Storage CPU Memory Price Availability
Archos 80 G9 8 “
8 Gb TI OMAP 4430
at 1.0 GHz
512 Mb €249
September 20th
16 Gb TI OMAP 4
at 1.2 GHz
512 Mb €279
Early December, 2011
250 Gb TI OMAP 4
at 1.2 GHz
512 Mb €299
January, 2012
16 Gb TI OMAP 4460
at 1.5 GHz
512 MB
TBC Christmas, 2011
Archos 101 G9 10.1″
8 Gb TI OMAP 4430
at 1.0 GHz
512 Mb €299.99
September 20th
16 Gb TI OMAP 4
at 1.2 GHz
512 Mb €349
End of November, 2011
250 Gb TI OMAP 4
at 1.2 GHz
512 Mb €399
16 Gb TI OMAP 4460
at 1.5 GHz
512 MB
TBC Christmas, 2011


Asus Memo 370t

Out of all of the cheap tablets that will be running Ice Cream Sandwich, I have to say that this tablet is by far the best deal. It is blazing fast and half the price of the other quad-core Ice Cream Sandwich tablet (Transformer Prime). If you are looking for a smaller sized tablet of the 7 inch variety, want some serious power under the hood, then this is definitely the one to hold out for.

Price: $249.99
Screen Size: 7″
Resolution: 1280×800 Super IPS display
Processor: Quad-Core Tegra 3 (Unknown Speed)
Memory: 1GB
Storage: 16GB/32GB
Camera(s): 8-megapixel  rear-camera
Battery: Still Unknown
Release Date: Q2 2012

Coby MID 7042

Coby has been in the cheap tablet market for a while now. However, almost every single one of their tablets have been sub-par. Now, with the addition of ICS and upgraded specs, Coby might actually have a chance at some market share (Maybe!).

Note: Be careful, rumor has it this tablet will have access to the GetJar marketplace instead of the Android Market.

Price: $179
Screen Size: 7″
Resolution: 800 x 480
Processor: 1Ghz ARM Cortex A8 processor
Memory: 1GB
Storage: 4GB (microSD slot up to 32GB)
Camera(s): Front facing camera of unknown quality
Battery: Still Unknown
Release Date: Unknown (but soon)

Argos Skypad Alpha2

Argos SkyPad is the latest cheap tablet manufactured by Skytex. Once again, this is not really a high-profile company that is a household name. In addition, the tablet will have access to the 1mobile market instead of the standard Android Market. But as noted in the picture above, the Alpha2 will have access to a lot of the big and famous Android apps.

Price: $199
Screen Size: 7″
Resolution: 1024 x 600
Processor: 1.2GHz ARM Cortex-A8
Memory: Unknown
Storage: 8GB
Camera(s): At least a rear-facing camera
Battery: Removable Battery of Unknown Size
Release Date: Early 2012

Ramos W6HD

The W6HD is the newest Android tablet from Ramos, a Chinese tablet manufacturer. The only reason I mention their location is because the tablet is not being sold directly to US customers. However, you can find the tablet online with 3rd party dealers, but you may also find that they are selling the W6HD at a higher price.

Price: $148.99
Screen Size: 7″
Resolution: 1024 x 600
Processor: AMLogic Cortex-A9 2nd generation core
Memory: 512MB
Storage: 8GB Storage
Camera(s): 0.3Mp front + 2.0Mp rear
Battery: 3300mAh (4-5 hours of video)
Release Date: Buy Now!

X10 AirPad 7p

Although once again we are looking at a “no name” manufacturer, the Airpad is being sold at an incredible $150 and offers features that appeal to many users. After all, some of us just don’t need a quad-core or rear-facing camera. If that person is you, the Airpad might be the way to go.

Price: $149.99
Screen Size: 7″
Resolution: 800 x 480
Processor: 1.2 GHz Allwinner A10 Cortex A8 processor + 395 Mhz DSP
Memory: 512MB
Storage: 4GB (microSD slot up to 32GB)
Camera(s): 1.3 MP front-camera with video recording and playback
Battery: 8.5 hours movie, 30 hours music, 8.5 hours WIFI Internet access
Release Date: Buy Now!

Samsung Galaxy Tab 2

Samsung did pretty well with their first round of Galaxy Tabs (minus all of the patent infringement cases). And now that they have announced that Ice Cream Sandwich will not be given to any of their older tablets, they have decided to produce another round with ICS.

Price: $350
Screen Size: 7″
Resolution: 1024 x 600
Processor: Dual-core 1GHz
Memory: 1GB
Storage: 8/16/32GB (and microSD)
Camera(s): Front facing camera of unknown quality
Battery: 4000 mAh, with up to 30 hours of music playback
Release Date: Q1 2012

Xvision an4

Electronics manufacturer WSL Japan will release the Xvision an4 in April of 2012. With a supposed low price tag and a big screen, this is a combo that many tablet “wanters” have been looking for. In addition to the average processor, the an4 will be packing 16GB of internal storage for all of your apps, pictures, and music.

Price: Consistant with others ($200-300)
Screen Size: 9.7″
Resolution: 1024 x 768
Processor: 1GHz CPU
Memory: 1GB
Storage: 16GB
Camera(s): 0.3 MP front-facing
Battery: Unknown
Release Date: April 2012

Our Picks


If you’re really looking to get the best deal on an Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) tablet, the NOVO7 Paladin is definitely the way to go. Coming in at just $89 the 800 x 480 7″ screen and 4000mAh battery should suit you well.

Performance and Overall Winner:

After taking a look at all of the tablets, if you are looking to get high-performance while not breaking your bank, the Asus Memo 370t is right up your alley. It is the only low-cost quad-core tablet and only costs 1/2 of the Asus Transformer Prime at $249. Although it is just 7″, the Asus Memo 370t packs 16GB of internal storage and an 8MP rear-facing camera.

And how about you? Would you opt for a lower priced tablet? See anything you like? Let us know in the comments below!

Matthew Sabatini
Matt has been an Android fanatic since the original Motorola Droid. In addition to designing web pages, running his own company, and going to school, he finds time to write for Android Authority. Matt still owns that good old Droid 1 and a Xoom Family Edition.
  • Linete

    I would definitely pick the Asus Memo out of the lot and the Galaxy Tab 2 as second choice.

  • the asus memo for sure

    • ZenInsight

      No front facing camera?

      • Hhasdf

        Hold your tablet up to a mirror.

    • ZenInsight

      No front facing camera?

  • cheapskate

    Would also like to know your take on the eFun Nextbook 10 Elite and the Velocity Cruz T507 please.

    • Matt Sabs

      The eFun Nextbook 10 Elite looks pretty solid for the price. Dual-core and the scree make for a good combination. However, the Velocity Cruz T507 definitely has a step up on the competition. Especially for as low as below $150. Be careful of these “unknown” manufacturers though. There is no guarantee on their products quality.

  • Abhilash
  • Marchone

    What’s up with the new LePan tablet

  • Guest

    my Acer Iconia tab A500 got ICS yesterday. By far the best tablet I’ve seen/used, it is amazing.

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    this configuration that too in mere Rs 5,555/- with astounding 6months warranty.
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  • The archos as a tablet is not bad but their customer service is terrible. So if you have a choice I would steer clear of them.

  • Legodude1029

    Last time I checked, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 was only $250 for the 8 GB version. Just so you know.

  • wicked

    Stay clear of novo 7 paladin… It has a major fault with the TS. Just try and google it. you will find many people with the same problem

  • Patrick Seely

    Nice breakdown of these units.

  • BSNL 701C only At 4999 with CASH ON DELIVERY
    Free Delivery for order- 9175932803
    OS Version Android 4.0.3
    Processor Cortex A8 1GHz
    LCD 7’’ 16:9, 800 x 480 16M Colours, Multi Touch Capacitive
    ROM (Storage) 4GB
    External Memory TF Card (Up to 32 GB)
    Battery 3000 mAh
    USB Ports Host USB + Mini USB
    HDMI Yes
    Wi-Fi IEEE 802.11b/g/n
    Camera 0.3MP
    Earphone 3.5mm Jack
    G-sensor Yes
    Connectivity Supports 2G & 3G USB Dongles (GSM & CDMA)
    GPS No
    Bluetooth No
    Video and Audio AVI(H.264, DIVX, DIVX, XVID, rm, rmvb, MKV(H.264, DIVX, DIVX, XVID), WMV, MOV, MP4(H.264, MPEG, DIVX, XVID), DAT(VCD), VOB(DVD), PMP,MPEG, MPG, FLV(H.263,H.264), ASF, TS, TP, 3GP, MPG etc MP3,WMA,MP2,OGG,AAC,M4A,MA4,FLAC,APE,3GP,WAV

  • Dragonnn

    The Archos 10.1 G9 Turbo is now coming with dual core 1,5Ghz and 250GB HDD. I think this is the best choise…

  • sulthan

    anyone 2500 tablet ….available

  • Ben

    WOW! Have you looked at Idolian line? Check ’em out