In case you can't already sense it, the festive season is almost upon us. Not too long ago, in addition to exchanging gifts with loved ones and eating and drinking way too much, this time of year would see family members gather around the table to play board games or browse old photos with the rest of the family, or sit down and watch a seasonal movie together. ARCHOS has brought such activities well and truly up to date, with the launch of a family-sized tablet named the FamilyPad.

Released under the ARCHOS budget-friendly ARNOVA brand, the FamilyPad features a 13.3-inch, 1280 x 800 resolution, 10-point capacitive touchscreen panel capable of full HD video playback at 30 frames per second. It's not quite in the same monster display league as the 20-inch, Win8 Tabletop PC from Sony, but it is priced a good deal cheaper.

It runs on Android 4.0 (ICS) with a range of pre-installed multi-player digital board games specially selected by ARCHOS. Processing power comes courtesy of an ARM Cortex A8 running at 1 GHz, supported by 1 GB RAM and 8 GB of onboard solid state storage (with microSD expansion). There's a 720p (2-megapixel) front-facing camera for HD webchat and a similarly-specced snapper to the rear, built-in Wi-Fi, one micro-USB port, a 3.5-mm audio jack and mini-HDMI out.

As you might expect from an ARCHOS product, APE, OGG and FLAC join the more common MP3 and WAV audio file formats. The FamilyPad sports built-in stereo speakers, too. Its Li-pol battery is claimed to give up to 10 hours of video playback per charge or six days on standby, and the tablet can be placed on the included display stand for comfortably watching movies in the den, reading recipes in the kitchen or flipping through the family photo album on the coffee table.

The ARNOVA FamilyPad will be initially released in the UK next month for £274.99 (US$441). We're still waiting for confirmation of U.S. availability and (actual) pricing.

Product page: FamilyPad

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