Over the past several months, there have been a handful of rumors suggesting that Google and ASUS might be working on an even more affordable tablet than the Nexus 7, with a nearly-$100 price tag as the target. ASUS rejected the rumors as hogwash, but that didn’t stop them from coming, and we heard some reports attempting to identify just what kind of hardware this bargain-basement tablet might run. That’s right where we’re back today, but at least this time the specs are slightly better.
Instead of the once-rumored 800MHz SoC, today’s theory, based on a recently-discovered GLBenchmark entry, has the tablet running a 1GHz processor. Identified as the ASUS ME172V, the tablet runs a Mali-400 GPU, the same as in Samsung’s Exynos 4 chips. The only other useful info revealed by this listing is the tablet’s resolution, a disappointing 1024 x 600.
This hardware very much seems to exist, in one form or another, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it will be released as an el-cheapo Nexus tablet. Maybe the better question would be whether or not it’s even worthwhile producing a $100 Nexus, if so many hardware sacrifices need to be made, and a much better alternative is available for so little more?