Android gamers can look forward to two new toys to play with this fall. The French consumer electronics company Archos is set to release their GamePad in October, and the San Diego-based startup PlayMG is set to launch their MG tablet this November. Let’s take a quick look!
PlayMG’s device features a unique ergonomic design that definitely sets it apart visually from current tablet systems. The device has a 4-inch screen, 4GB built-in memory with an SD port for expandable memory ability, a 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera and a DebitSmart digital wallet system to pay for games. The MG is focused exclusively on gaming and is geared toward a younger audience. PlayMG’s Kickstarter page explains the company “built it to be affordable for the 63 million kids under 18 years old who are among the heaviest game users. Just think about it, you don’t have to worry about the big expense of packaged video games or the monthly data plans that come with smartphones.”
Expected retail price: $169.99
Archos’ device has a 7-inch screen in addition to directional and input buttons built into the side. The device will also serve as a regular tablet with access to Google Play and all its accompanying apps. It’s got plenty of power, operating off a dual-core 1.5GHz CPU and a Mali 400 quad-core GPU. Archos CEO Henri Crohas said “Thanks to the mapping and automatic game recognition systems included on the GamePad, we already have over a thousand android games compatible with the ARCHOS GamePad’s physical controls, including back catalog titles that originally didn’t include physical controls.”
Estimated retail price: $188.00
The MG seems designed to be attractive to parents interested in getting their children something for this holiday season, while the GamePad seems geared toward a more established gaming crowed, making it poised to take on Apple’s dominance in the mobile gaming market.
iOS is currently the market king of mobile gaming, but the open-source nature of Android is paving the way for a number of companies to put together their own gaming solutions. The most famous example would undoubtedly be Ouya, the upcoming $99 game console that will offer a cloud-based Android gaming experience.