Eight inch and smaller tablets have been around for a while but up until a couple of years ago, the market largely consisted of rather generic Android slates aimed at those who didn't want to spend more cash on a full-size device. But as Google, Apple and Amazon entered the small tablet space, and Microsoft finally optimized Windows 8.1 for the form factor, the perception of these smaller tablets has shifted from something that’s simply cheaper to something that’s portable, convenient and worth a second look.
We’ve seen a flurry of 8-inch Windows 8.1 tablets hit the market over the past several months, including the Toshiba Encore and the Lenovo Miix 2 8 (no, that isn’t a typo). Neither of these systems was terribly impressive in recent reviews but that doesn’t mean you should give up on Windows 8.1 slates just yet.
Next up is the Acer Iconia W4, the follow-up to the company’s first Windows 8.1 tablet, featuring an 8.0-inch 1,280 x 800 display and the same quad-core Intel Bay Trail Atom Z3740 that we’ve seen from the competition.