Reader Charles Wilson sent me an email pointing out a listing at CDW that stated the Archos 80 Platinum tablet had been discontinued back in May:
That led me to do some research on this once-hot but very elusive tablet.
The Archos 80 Platinum was the hottest of the low-end tablets that were shown at CES. It offered a great iPad Mini-like IPS screen with an AllWinner A31 CPU for the bargain price of just US$199. At that time, it really was a winner for the price.
Shortly after CES, NYC retailer J&R listed the Archos 80 Platinum on its website. Then quickly pulled the listing.
Archos even listed the manual for it online back in March.
At the end of March, out of Poland we got an unboxing video.
Then in April, NYC retailer J&R re-listed the Archos 80 Platinum as forthcoming:
And then that listing disappeared. Again!
In fact, it was as if the Archos 80 Platinum had been swallowed by the earth itself. There were no other videos and no pimping of it by Archos on Twitter.
So today, I checked the retailers I know that stock Archos tablets and the evidence began to add up that the Archos 80 Platinum is dead.
At Adorama, it’s not listed.
At B&H Photo, it’s not listed.
At Amazon, it’s not listed.
And then to confirm that the Archos 80 Platinum is totally dead — without Archos itself even admitting it! (they still list it!) — if you go to the Archos online store for France — which is their home turf — the tablet isn’t even for sale!
If they’re not selling their own product in their own country, well, it’s dead, Jim.
(In fact, if you look at the listing above, none of the Archos Platinum line is available for sale!)
What would account for Archos killing the 80 Platinum?
I think three things:
1) The tablet was sourced from Onda and they couldn’t produce a quality product in quantity.
2) The AllWinner A31 chip didn’t have that big a power difference between the dual-core Rockchip in the Archos 80 Titanium tablet.
3) The rise of iPad Mini clones in China with the powerful Rockchip 3188 CPU made the 80 Platinum just look like a dog.
That’s all speculation on my part but I think I’m correct.
So, farewell, Archos 80 Platinum. Perhaps only two people in the entire world — one of whom lives in Poland — outside of Archos own it. That’s a dubious collector’s item and not much of an honor.
In the meantime, the Rockchip 3188-based iPad Mini clones out of China offer a better alternative.