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Take a white iPad with Retina tablet, move the front-facing camera over to the top-left corner, ship it with Android instead of iOS and slap a reflective “ARCHOS” logo on the front. Now replace the aluminum encasing and replace it with plastic. What do you have?

The ARCHOS 97 Titanium HD, one of the many tablets that the French electronics company showed off at CES today.

The 97 Titanium HD — yes, another long and ridiculous product name from an Android device manufacturer — shares quite a few characteristics with Apple’s beloved tablet. For starters, both devices have 9.7-inch displays. Both have a screen resolution of 2048 by 1536, which places both in Apple’s “Retina” category for pixel density. And both boast dual-core processing chips and quad-core graphics chips. The 97 Titanium HD is a dead ringer for an iPad (until you pick it up, at least), but it runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and costs half as much — $250.

Take a look at this image for a side by side comparison.


To be fair, ARCHOS was able to edge the iPad out in terms of size and thickness, but that might have more to do with the build materials the company selected than its engineering wizardry. The company also announced other tablets at different sizes and price points, so it’s trying to spread the love around to meet the demands of all tablet users. I can’t fault ARCHOS for looking to the iPad for inspiration, since it is arguably the most well-done tablet on the market, but after Apple went after Samsung for “ripping off” its designs, I’m surprised ARCHOS has ventured even closer.

What’s truly humorous is that this is exactly the kind of product I’d want if it was coming from any other manufacturer, but I’ve had issues with ARCHOS products in the past and I’m not so trusting of the brand now. I’m an iPhone user, but I prefer a different level of functionality in a tablet, which is why I use a Nexus 7. I’m a big fan of the iPad’s aspect ratio and wish that more Android tablet makers would give a nod to those who don’t want a squeezed screen in portrait mode. But alas, all we get are widescreens. This is the kind of tablet I want to see more of, but I’ll probably wait until Samsung or ASUS take up the cause.

What do you think? Does this ARCHOS bear a striking resemblance to the iPad? Would you consider picking one up? Let us know.


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