For the last three months we keep hearing rumors about a low-priced Google/Asus tablet which from our point view has nothing to do with Google. These rumors started back in September during Google launch of the Nexus 7 in Japan, and continued the following month (October) revealing not only its $99 price, but a couple of hardware specs like an ARM Cortex-A9 single core processor clocked at 800MHz and a Mali-400 GPU, all culminating with an early December leak on GL Benchmark website unveiling tablet model number Asus ME172V (see image above and below), 1GHz single core CPU (not 800MHz), 7 inch display with 1024×600 screen resolution and Jelly Bean firmware build JRO03H.
A new set of rumors surface in Europe, Italy, where according to our friends at Notebook Italia, Asus plans not 1 but 2 such low-budget tablets. The second one would be the ME371MG which packs 7 inch IPS LCD screen (1280 x 800) powered by an Intel Atom Z2420 processor (RAZR i packs a Z2460 which is more powerful) clocked at 1.2GHz with 1GB of RAM, 16GB built-in storage, 3G, Bluetooth, WiFi and GPS connectivity.
Asus ME371MG tablet should have a 3MP camera judging by the photo posted on Google Picasa. Furthermore according to DigiTimes an Asian publication, the low-priced Asus tablet expected to be announced in the first quarter of 2013, launching only in the Q2 of next year with an estimated shipment between 500,000 to 600,000 on the device’s release date. The price for ME371MG would be between $129-149 USD.
Update: Russian OGO1 online retailer website has the Asus ME172V on pre-order for 6990 rubles (about $226 USD) and the Asus ME371MG for 9490 rubles (about $307 USD), along with full list of details for both devices.
As always we advise to take this with a grain of salt as it is only speculation and not something concret.