Couldn't keep up with the 600+ posts we wrote covering CES 2012 in Las Vegas? We're here to help sift the wheat from the chaff, and if you're hoping to see the best of what CES had to offer in the world of tablets, you've come to the right place. As you can imagine, finding the best slate is much easier said than done, since it seemed as though nearly every major company brought a tablet in some shape, form or color. Head past the break to see our personal favorites from the show.
Acer Iconia Tab A700
Acer, without a doubt, made a huge showing at this year's show by introducing not one, not two but three new models to its Iconia Tab lineup: the A200, A510 and one of our top choices, the A700. Why were we smitten? It has a 1.3GHz quad-core NVIDIA Tegra 3 with 1GB of RAM, its own customized -- yet non-intrusive -- skin laid over Ice Cream Sandwich. Oh, and let's not forget the gorgeous 1080p "IPS quality" display. Here's the catch: since the A700 is being called a "technology demo," Acer's not exactly certain that the high-end tablet will actually ever see the consumer market. Regardless, we like the direction the company's going -- and even if doesn't see the light of day, we hope Acer has something else up its sleeve to take its place.
Transformer Prime TF700T
Just getting used to the Transformer Prime TF201? Well, it wouldn't be a true CES without at least one company one-upping itself within a month of the launch of its signature product, would it? ASUS definitely fits the bill, as frustrated TF201 users worldwide groaned when it introduced the TF700T, a new Prime that offers slightly better specs. It's a 10.1-inch device with a top-notch 1,920 x 1,200 resolution that takes advantage of a 1.3GHz quad-core Tegra 3, an 8MP rear camera with 2MP front-facing cam, your choice of 32GB or 64GB internal storage and Ice Cream Sandwich already loaded. The new Prime will be compatible with the same keyboard dock, so fortunately no new accessories are needed. Be on the lookout for the TF700T next quarter for a retail cost of $599 to $699.
Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga
Is it a tablet or a Ultrabook? Well, both, we suppose. Lenovo took to CES to introduce the IdeaPad Yoga, a convertible Windows 8 device that will let you switch back and forth between the two form factors depending on your situation. The 3.3-pound laptop / tablet is a bit on the heavy side, but the Yoga, with its 1600 x 900 IPS display, holds a lot of promise for $1,000 once the OS -- and device -- are both ready to go later this year.
Not only did the Pantech Element become a decent and cost-effective LTE competitor to the ridiculously-priced HTC Jetstream on AT&T, it also added some benefits not found on any other tablet in the lineup. The first that comes to mind is the Element's ability to shun water better than a bad pick-up line. Dunk the tab in one meter of water, walk away for thirty minutes and it still works without issue. Add this to a medium-sized 8-inch display, 1.5GHz dual-core CPU, 6,400mAh battery and a pair of rear and front cameras at five and two megapixels, respectively, sell it for a $300 price tag, and this tablet may have a pretty decent chance in stores when it comes out on January 22nd.
OLPC XO 3.0
The One Laptop Per Child initiative has a new tablet by the name of XO 3.0, a customizable device that starts at $100. As the main driver behind the product is its inexpensive price point, don't be expecting to see Transformer Prime-like performance here -- then again, that's not exactly the purpose of OLPC, is it? Rather, delivering a tablet that offers minimum specs of 800MHz CPU, 1,500mAh battery, 512MB of RAM, Pixel Qi display, USB ports and 4GB of NAND storage, and the specs can be customized. We feel that even though it's not a state-of-the-art tablet, XO 3.0 is worthy of a mention because of the OLPC's overall mission.