Following recent rumors of an Asus-made $99 Google Nexus 7, Acer is said to be prepping its own 7-inch, $99 tablet offering. The Wall Street Journal claims this information comes a source with "direct knowledge" of the project, but let's keep this one's status set to "rumor" until we ascertain more concrete details.
Purportedly, Acer's upcoming Iconia B1 will be the $99 model in question -- a slim, black tablet with blue edges as pictured here. The Iconia B1 is hardly a mystery, as we know the PC-maker recently submitted the device to the FCC for approval. Interestingly, there even appear to be benchmarks of the tablet in the wild.
The Iconia B1 sports 7-inches of screen real-estate with a resolution of 1024x600 pixels, giving it a ~170 PPI. The device is expected to be powered by a dual-core 1.2GHz processor paired with a PowerVR SGX 531 graphics processing unit -- fairly modest specs akin to Amazon's Kindle Fire, but it's difficult to argue the price.
Notably, the tablet's performance is far behind that of the Nexus 7, which is an important detail considering recent rumors of a $99 Nexus 7. Given their hardware differences though, this is as expected.
It's difficult to deny the B1's existence with this preponderance of evidence; however, bear in mind the only link we have between the B1 and its rumored $99 price tag are just that: rumors. The real question here is the price.
One possible caveat, the WSJ's source notes, is the $99 Iconia B1 may not be sold in the United States. Rather, it's suggested that Acer may have its sights set on emerging markets.