Forget the iPad mini, this is the tablet I’ve been waiting for. It’s called the Archos GamePad, and its biggest selling point is that unlike most tablets, it has physical controls built-in for tablet users who like to do a spot of gaming while they’re on the go. The Android-powered slate also boasts a 7-inch capacitive touch display, and it’s ready to make you forget all about the PlayStation Vita and the Nintendo 3DS XL.
The GamePad was unveiled by Archos at IFA 2012 in Berlin today. It’s packing a 1.5GHz processor that’s accompanied by a Mali 400mp quad-core graphics processing unit, and unlike previous Archos tablets, this one’s Google certified, so you get full access to Google Play. What’s more, Archos promises that the GamePad will automatically map its keys to your favorite Android games — much like Sony’s Xperia Play does.
I can’t tell you how long I’ve been waiting for a tablet like this. I love my iPad, and I do a lot of gaming on it. But three years on, I still feel a need for physical controls. A device like the GamePad, which provides the best of both worlds, is literally a dream come true. And Archos agrees:
“Until now, tablets provided gamers with touch controls that lacked response and compatibility, providing a disappointing gaming experience. As one of the main tablet uses, there is a strong need for a tablet that does more for gaming,”
One of the best things about the GamePad is its price tag. Archos says it will cost less than £130 (approx. $206) when it makes its debut at the end of October. That’s significantly less than other handheld gaming devices like the aforementioned PS Vita and Nintendo 3DS.
Are you looking forward to the Archos GamePad?