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Acer Iconia A1 - Battery Life, Camera and Verdict

Andrew Williams

By Andrew Williams



Our Score:


Acer Iconia A1 – Camera

Unlike many budget tablets, the Acer Iconia A1 has two cameras. There’s a 5-megapixel sensor on its rear, and a basic VGA sensor slap-bang in the middle of the screen surround.

Both cameras are – predictably – charitably described as basic. The main camera has no flash, and uses a fixed-focus lens. That means you have no control over the subject of your photo, and can’t take in-focus snaps of anything close-up.

Images are grainy and feature limited detail. These images are good for frivolous sharing over Twitter or Facebook, at a push.

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Acer Iconia A1 – Battery life

What’s much more important for a tablet is battery life. The Acer Iconia A1 has a 4,960mAh battery, which is roughly comparable with the Nexus 7 4,325mAh unit and the iPad mini's 4,490 mAh battery.

Given this limited spec cred, its stamina is good. It will last for around eight hours of SD-quality video playback with a natively supported codec.

We wouldn’t recommend relying on the internal speaker for any movie-watching, though, as it’s a piddly mono job with little clout. Just like the Nexus 7, speaker quality isn’t something the Iconia A1 focuses on.

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Should I buy the Acer Iconia A1?

The Acer Iconia A1 is riddled with compromises. Its screen isn’t great, the internal speaker is mediocre, it’s a touch weighty and some of the most challenging games are a little too much for the MTK quad-core processor.

However, while they are too significant to forget with a wave of the hand, they don’t amount to a game-ending set of drawbacks. It’s well-made, its approach to software is just right and the 4:3 aspect ratio is great. It’s the screen shape that makes the Iconia A1 a solid alternative to the slightly more capable Asus Fonepad, as a 4:3 7.9-inch screen does seem a lot larger – and more comfortable on the eyes – than a 7-inch widescreen one. Although the Fonepad's built-in 3G is a tempting addition.

In reality, though, at this size and price you're choosing between the Nexus 7 and the Iconia A1. If you prefer the iPad-like screen aspect, the A1 is your best bet. It's a very capable tablet at a great price. But if that doesn't matter to you the Nexus 7 still edges it. It's the same price and has a higher capacity battery, two key things in its favour.


The Acer Iconia A1 has a bunch of minor problems. Its entry-level IPS screen is ageing badly, it doesn’t have as much power on tap as its ‘quad-core’ processor may suggest and it’s a bit heavy. But all this proves is that this £150 is not magic. There are compromises involved in a tablet this cheap, but weigh them up against the savings made and this fun, accessible little Acer makes a lot of sense.

Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Battery Life 7
  • Design 7
  • Features 8
  • Performance 7
  • Screen Quality 7
  • Value 9

George Dantzidis

May 4, 2013, 10:33 am

Can't wait till I get my hands on it.


May 4, 2013, 10:23 pm

So Apple release a smaller iPad following the success of the Nexus 7, despite saying they never would and they are an inspiration because one of the many many different tablets is the same size.

Total nonsense and just another attempt to shoehorn Apple into every article.


May 4, 2013, 10:31 pm

Really? It's the same size, and aspect ratio (4:3), as an iPad mini and it's the only Android tablet I know of to match it in this way. If that's not reasonable grounds to compare and contrast, I don't know what is. The only person with an agenda here is you.

Michael Kehm

May 7, 2013, 6:36 pm

1,024 x 768 is less than the Nexus 7, but with a bigger screen... there are higher 4:3 resolutions...


May 7, 2013, 7:18 pm

The "design inspiration of the moment" because one of the many many available Android tablets has the same screen size and ratio.

Gary Wood

May 7, 2013, 10:28 pm

*cough* Archos *cough*


May 8, 2013, 3:04 pm

Are you referring to the Archos 80 G9 tablet that came out months before iPad mini and had an 8", 4:3, 1024x768 screen?

TR reviewed it themselves I see, of course the review points out how its just like an iPad because of the ratio. I see a pattern emerging. I wonder if the iPad mini review mentions how Apple is using Archos for inspiration. http://www.trustedreviews.c...

TR you should learn to take feedback and to leave Apple out of non Apple reviews.


May 8, 2013, 4:33 pm

Fair enough, you've found one, but I don't seriously believe Acer was sitting there going "let's make a tablet just like the Archos!".

I appreciate that Apple isn't everyone's cup of tea, but it's not reasonable, or sensible, to write about any tablet without reference to an iPad, just as it would make no sense to write about an iPhone without mentioning the numerous Android (and other) alternatives.


May 9, 2013, 10:49 pm

You can mention that it shares similarities in size and ratio to the iPad mini without fawning over Apple. That was my original point and that is what myself and many other people are fed up with.


June 23, 2013, 7:52 pm

stupid review the battery in the Acer Iconia A1 is 4960 mAh....


June 27, 2013, 1:53 pm

So would the Lenovo Ideatab A2109 be faster than this, even though it has 1GB less RAM (the Tegra 3 processor picking up the slack)?

Dave Ash

October 20, 2013, 5:04 pm

All these reviewers are biased to game playing, talking in milliseconds and clouding ones judgement due to new tablets on the market.. The unit feels big in the hand although far better viewing than any 7" with nice contrast and detail. Internet speed is as fast as the Asus Memo pad HD7, settings (wifi, gps etc) are also better accessed. The camera is not as good as the Asus Memo pad although I use a camera for photos and thats where the card slot is a plus. In my opinion you need to take these reviews with a pinch of salt and test yourself. Finally the new Nexus loses my vote as every retailer has the unit on demo so you cant test.


December 24, 2014, 8:56 pm

good value for the price!

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