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Kobo to release the 7-inch “Arc” tablet in November, runs ICS and has a 1.5 GHz dual core processor


Toronto-based Kobo, who really has a focus for e-readers and previously released an entry-level Android tablet called the Vox, is back again and announced the upcoming availability of an Ice Cream Sandwich powered named the “Arc.”

The specs of the Wi-Fi only Arc sound impressive: 7-inch display (1280 x 800), 1.5 GHz dual core processor, 1 GB RAM, 1.3MP front-facing camera that shoots 720p HD videos, 364 grams, and has overall dimensions of 120mm X 12.4mm x 189mm. The UI is Kobo’s “Tapestries” which gives “easy content discovery” and their 3 million books, but runs OS 4.0 and has access to Google Play and comes with a few pre-loaded apps like Facebook, Twitter, Zinio, Rdio, and Skype. The 8GB version will be $199.99 and the 16GB version is priced at $249.99 outright, in both Black and White with Blue and Purple interchangeable “SnapBacks.” These should hit stores in November.

Source: Kobo

  • migo

    On the one hand I’m concerned that it’s already lower specced than the Nexus 7, and that the Kindle Fire sequel that’ll be revealed nowish will also significantly outdo it. On the other hand, the Nexus 7 isn’t really in stock, the Arc looks like it should have better sound capabilities, and it runs close to stock Android, unlike what B&N and Amazon put out. It also hits the good enough point. I’ve for a while considered ICS and Dual Core to be a minimum for any Android device. Anything better than that is a bonus, but I’d be perfectly satisfied as is.

    • EvanKr

      The specs are pretty modern and up there with the GS3 or One X IMO, what will slow this thing down is Android 4.0 (compared to 4.1 on the Nexus), and a slight but not too heavy skin running atop Android.

      The specs, though, are pretty up to date and current, last time at checked an S4 and 1GB or RAM are pretty modern.

    • daveloft

      The Kindle Fire is not available in Canada so no point comparing the two. It won’t matter if the next Kindle Fire blows it away in the specs and price department as the average Canadian will be unaware of it.

      Now I’m sure everyone on this site would end up with a Nexus 7 over this but the average consumer will end up with the Kobo Arc. It will actually be available for $200 in a retail store unlike the Nexus 7 and should be a fairly easy upsell from a traditional ereader.

      Anyone buying this device will likely primarily be a reader who is looking for some added tablet functionality. For this consumer 8GB of storage and a dual core processor is more than enough.

  • bulletwithbatwings

    Dual Core S4 or dual core Tegra 2? This is a big difference that will shift the Kobo from “interesting” to “dead in the water.”

  • Terry

    It says it has a 10 hour life with a 2 week standby.

    They also state they will update it to 4.1 a few months after the release.

    Sounds promising I suppose. It’ll be easier to get than the Nexus 7 for Canadians and the price isn’t ridiculous.

    We’ll see though, it could just be another crappy Vox. lol

  • roman20

    Might as well get the real thing for $9 more.

  • sicpuppy

    Why bother .Get a Nexus tablet , case closed .

  • chupathingy

    The design of the actual device is way better from what I can see. Also, why not support a Canadian company these days?

  • Daniel Sarfati

    It’s a dual core TI OMAP processor, the same one used in the OG RAZR and XT860. Closer to the Kindle Fire actually. I think this is a stupid move by Kobo though, they should be focusing on their content more than their hardware, or put the hardware at a much lower cost than the Nexus 7. I can’t see any compelling reason to spend the extra “$9″ and buy the N7, you’ll be on the latest version of Android and be without bloat, although the Kobo reading app is nice. They claim 10 hours of reading time, I think the N7 says 9.5 hours of HD movie time, so I don’t even think this can really compete…

    Was a nice try though, but I think this one will flop.

  • Charles in Vancouver

    “Oh wow. I’m so excited to buy a tablet from Kobo instead of the cheaper more powerful Nexus 7!” – Nobody, ever.

    This thing would have to become at least cheaper than the Playbook to be worth it.

  • Kida

    Hopefully they improved the build quality. The Kobo VOX was a flimsy, creaky, piece of garbage.

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