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Archos 9 review

The media player specialist turns its hand to tablet computing

Our Verdict

The poor experience this tablet PC offers means we cannot recommend it if you are looking for a tablet PC

Product features

  • Screen Resolution : 1024 x 600
  • Processor Core : Single-core (1 Core)

View full specification

For

  • Nice look
  • Solid build

Against

  • Reflective screen
  • Awful usability
  • Limited connectivity

Archos is best known for its range of personal media players, although it recently entered the computing market with the Archos 10 netbook. The Archos 9 touchscreen tablet is its latest venture, but sadly proves frustrating to use.

At first glance the device looks smart. The chassis is solid and thin, although prolonged use can be awkward due to the weight. Thankfully a fold-out stand takes the burden when used at a desk.

Battery life - at 311-minutes - is excellent. The bright and sharp 8.9-inch screen makes up the bulk of the unit and impresses when used in darkened interiors. However, the highly reflective coating greatly limits outdoors use.

With an Intel Atom Z510 processor on board, performance is comparable to most modern netbooks. Basic office tasks run smoothly, but only the most simple games and multimedia applications will work.

Flawed usability

The greatest flaw is its usability. The touchscreen often proves unresponsive, rendering even the most basic tasks a frustrating experience. Selecting the wrong option in menus is all too easy, while dragging windows around is a shaky affair.

A tiny touch-sensitive panel on the right side of the device can be used as an alternative means of control and fares slightly better. Users will still long for a touchpad or a mouse, however.

An onscreen keyboard has also been included for typing use, but we found it difficult to bring up and operate. The lack of response means typing is laborious, and those with larger fingers will need to increase the dimensions until it covers most of the screen to minimise mistakes.

Connectivity is somewhat limited, with just a single USB port in place. Communication is via 802.11g Wi-Fi and 10/100 Ethernet and an integrated camera is built into the left side of the chassis.

The deeply flawed usability of the Archos 9, combined with the reflective screen, unfortunately make this tablet impossible to recommend.

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Tech Specs

Product TypeNet-tablet PC
Hard Drive Capacity60 GB
Processor ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ModelGMA 500
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Maximum Battery Run Time5 Hour
Backlight TechnologyLED
Front Camera/WebcamYes
Operating System PlatformWindows
Processor ModelZ510
ColourBlack
Operating SystemWindows 7 Starter
Brand NameArchos
Processor Speed1.10 GHz
Processor TypeAtom
Screen Size22.6 cm (8.9")
Screen Resolution1024 x 600
Standard Memory1 GB
Weight (Approximate)800 g
Cache512 KB
Processor CoreSingle-core (1 Core)
TouchscreenYes
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11b/g
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 2.0
Ethernet TechnologyFast Ethernet
Memory StandardDDR2-400/PC2-3200
Height17 mm
Width256 mm
Depth138 mm
Screen ModeWSVGA
Memory TechnologyDDR2 SDRAM
ManufacturerArchos Technology
Product Model9
Product Name9 Net-Tablet PC
Manufacturer Part Number501 352
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.archos.com
Marketing InformationNetbooks are handy machines, but they are really just scaled down laptops. The ARCHOS 9 PCtablet however is a true evolution in portable computing as its form and design breaks the rules of the conventional laptop design.
Package Contents
  • 9 Net-Tablet PC
  • Lithium Polymer Battery
  • AC Adapter
  • Stylus
  • Power Cord
  • User Guide
Limited Warranty1 Year