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The ARCHOS 50 Diamond, future flagship 4G dual-SIM smartphone from the brand was was announced about 2 months ago and got recently covered at CES 2015 in Las Vegas. In a interview at the trade show, an ARCHOS representative has revealed to website that the 50 Diamond should be available on the market sometime in March 2015 for €199.


Here are the full ARCHOS 50 Diamond phone specifications:

Operating System Android 4.4.4 Kit-Kat
CPU Octo-Core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615:
Quad-Core @1.7 GHz Cortex A53 & Quad-Core @1 Ghz Cortex A53.
32-bit & 64-bit
GPU: Adreno 405
Flash Storage Memory Capacity: 16 GB
System Memory 2048 MB
Interfaces Micro USB 2.0: Mobile Transfer Protocol (MTP)
Micro SD slot (up to 64GB)
Display 5.0″ IPS
1920 x 1080 resolution – 440 ppi
GPS Yes + Galileo
interestingly, a Galileo global navigation satellite system GPS compatibility is announced on the ARCHOS Diamond, while most Galileo satellites aren’t yet launched and the navigation system is only expected to be fully operational by 2019 (according to Wikipedia)
Bluetooth 4.0
Camera Back: 16 MPx + LED Flash
no details given about the sensor type/brand for the 16 Mpixels rear camera
Front: 8 MPx
Dual-Sim 2x Micro Sim Dual Active
4G / LTE 800 / 1800 / 2600 MHz
3G / UMTS / WCDMA 900 / 2100 MHz
GSM / GPRS / EDGE 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 MHz
Download speeds 4G / LTE (cat 4) 150 Mbps / 50 Mbps
DC-HSPA + 42 Mbps / 11 Mbps
Wi-Fi Yes + Hotspot functionality + Wi-Fi Direct
Dimensions 146 x 70.4 x 8mm 
Weight 146g
Battery 2700 mAh
Included in the pack ARCHOS 50 Diamond
Battery + Charger
Hands-Free kit, Documentation, Warranty Information


A few more details were given in Clubic’s interview:

  • the device should run Android 5.0 Lollipop but will ship initially with Android 4.4 KitKat. Hopefully this will be respected, unlike the Android 4.4 Kitkat promised update for the ARCHOS 45-50 Helium phones
  • the 50 Diamond smartphone has a FullHD (1920 x 1080 pixels) display which uses IPS screen technology
  • the included 2700 maH battery on the Diamond is not removable
  • the Diamond will be available in a single color, the flashy yellow one that you can see in the (rendered?) picture above

A black version is still visible on ARCHOS website product gallery website:


Thanks (in French) for the CES interview.

Just in time for a cold Christmas, we have found a nice Bluetooth Beanie to keep your ears warm while listening to music or talking on your phone hands free.

There are currently a few versions now selling on the market, ARCHOS has their own Music Beany model but it looks like we were not lucky enough to have one for review, so we have been looking for alternatives.

The device we are checking here is particularly interesting as there is a promotion for a limited time with an amazing price: it currently sells for just 10€ / £8 / $12 shipping included, while most competing products are more in the €25€ to €50 range. Please check at the end of the article for a great deals selection.



Bluetooth Beanie hat (black)

Smart Talking Keep Warm Music Beanie Hat w/ Built-in Wireless Bluetooth Stereo Earphones - Black EPATH-354700
9.71€ / £7.67 / $11.99

Bluetooth Beanie hat manufacturer specifications

Bluetooth support Version: V3.0+EDR
Frequency 2.4026GHz-2.480GHz
Transmission distance about 10 meters (30ft)
Microphone transmission distance 1 meter (3 ft)
Battery Li-ion 3.7V / 120mA
Charging time 2.5 hours
Stand- by time about 60 hours
Continuous working time about 5 hours

Beanie design, fabric

The hat is made of a dual layer fabric to keep, this is obviously not cotton or wool for that price but probably acrylic fiber. The hat is offered in a single “one size fits all”. It should be big enough to host big heads, at least it was fine with our testers :)

The fabric and build quality is OK, quite clean and soft touch. The socket for the micro-USB charger is accessible thru a hole in the fabric, this is not the nicest and most robust design but it does the job.



When properly installed, the Bluetooth panel should be located next to the right user hear. It is a little prominent but does not hurt much.


Beanie Colors

The Bluetooth hat is available in multiple colors: red, blue, black, grey, pink, purple, brown. Some stores are just listing black and grey models.


Bluetooth Beanie package contents

The box contains the hat wrapped in the plastic bag and a micro USB connector. The back of packaging details the main product specs and shows the certifications logos: CE, ROHS and FCC.

Usual caution has to be taken regarding the specifications for products coming from the Chinese markets.



Connection and buttons operations

The connection to the hat is very simple. First start the hat, then look for it on your Bluetooth devices (Android, Apple, Windows …), you should quickly see a device named “BT-03S“, you should then pair with it, then you are ready to send music. We have successfully tested connections with a Windows notebook computer, a few Android smartphones and an Apple iPad tablet: in all cases it just took no more than 30 seconds to connect and start playing music !

To save battery, after the Beanie has been powered up, it will auto power off after a five minutes if no connection with a remote Bluetooth device has been established.


The small control panel on the hat has only 3 buttons but offers all the basic features you may need, each button having multiple functions:


Play button: Hold on the middle Play/Pause button to Power On/off the device. While playing music, a short press on the Play button can pause current track.

The same short press on this button is used to answer/hangup a phone communication. As an alternative, you can also use your smartphone to accept or hangup a communication.

Left and Right buttons (- and +): these are used to change music track (previous and next) when the button is pushed shortly, will decrease or increase the sound volume.


The Bluetooth panel also holds 2 LEDs located just above the buttons, the blue LED shows the device is powered On while the red LED shows the device is charging (the red LED won’t show after the charge is complete)


Battery life

As usual, the manufacturer’s specs are a bit optimistic, we have made our own measurements.

Expect a charging time of about 50-60 minutes to recharge a fully with a regular USB port (500 ma output)

From a fully charged device, we established a Bluetooth connection to a smartphone located 1 meter next to the hat and let it play music (volume set at ~75%) until the battery got empty. We measured a continuous music play time of about 2 hours 40 minutes before the sound started to drop, before that we had no disconnection.

Sound quality and calling features

You surely shouldn’t expect audiophile quality with a sub $20 audio device, but we found the sound quite enjoyable. Maximum volume doesn’t go very high, the sound is bit flat and does not show bass boost.

As far as stereo sound is concerned, the hat should be worn with the Bluetooth buttons panel on the right hear side.

While the audio quality is fine, we are more reserved on the microphone value. The recording system in the hat seems to be a small microphone located on the bottom of the Bluetooth panel, it is relatively sensitive but it is not located ideally to catch your words while you wear the Beany. Still the audio sound of the other party during a phone call is good, so overall it appears as an acceptable solution for hands free use.


Our opinion: pretty decent product – cheap price

We liked
We did not like
  • great features for the price
  • audio sound quality is fine
  • decent hat fabric quality, hat design and size are fine
  • battery life is enough for a long walk/running session or during daily commute
  • does not seem to be weather/water proof
  • microphone/recording quality could be better
  • headphones and Bluetooth modules are not fully secured and can move inside the Beanie


Overall it’s a great product for the price, we recommend it !

Great deals on the Bluetooth Beanie hat

Bluetooth Beanie hat (grey)

Smart Talking Keep Warm Music Beanie Hat w/ Built-in Wireless Bluetooth Stereo Headphones - Grey EPATH-352380
9.71€ / £7.67 / $11.99

Bluetooth Beanie hat (black)

Smart Talking Keep Warm Music Beanie Hat w/ Built-in Wireless Bluetooth Stereo Earphones - Black EPATH-354700
9.71€ / £7.67 / $11.99

Bluetooth Beanie hat (pink)

Smart Talking Keep Warm Music Beanie Hat w/ Built-in Wireless Bluetooth Stereo Headphones PINK! EPATH-360799
10.21€ / £8.06 / $12.61


Questions and answers

Q: Can I wash the hat ?

There are no particular instructions in the box, we recommend that you shouldn’t leave the electronics inside the hat before putting it in the washing machine. You’ll find a small hole to extract the Bluetooth system inside the hat, don’t forget to take away both headphone modules. Then you can probably put the hat in the washing machine in a 30 or 40 degrees synthetic program:)

Q: Cant I connect multiple devices to the hat ?

You can connect multiple devices Bluetooth devices (Android, Windows, Apple, …) to the hat but you can connect only one at a time. Any connection made will “block” further connection to be established, so you will need to disconnect one device to allow a connection from another.


If you have other questions, please post them in the comments section below.


Check out this catalogue of Android VR Apps and Games for VR Headsets such as the Google Cardboard, Durovis Dive, Homido, ColorCross, ARCHOS VR Glasses or other Virtual Reality 3D devices.

Please visit us often for updates, the application list is updated daily and the page design will be improved soon.
Use the Top 30 button below to list the best 30 applications and games according to the Google Play Store ratings. You can also sort by App Name and Rating to find your favorite app by category. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us if you need to have a VR application added to our listing.

Check Top 30 or sort by: App Name | Rating

Top 30 apps/games between all categories (with most votes and average rating > 3.5)


Last Saturday during France vs Portugal football match at the Stade de France near Paris, we met ARCHOS to see their latest products. One of them is a headset that provides immersive display experience for a cheap price.

The device is a  stereoscopic 3D viewer similar to Google Cardboard fold-out cardboard smartphone mount, ARCHOS model is made of plastic and should come ready to use, no construction needed. ARCHOS hasn’t yet given a final name to this product, it should be available for around €30 by November/December this year.


ARCHOS headset design

The smartphone is meant to be inserted in the front side, screen facing towards the convex plastic lenses and user eyes.  The headset design should be able to host most smartphones having a screen size from 4 inches and up to 6  (likely 7) inches. While this kind of devices work with 720p displays, the larger and higher resolution the smartphone screen is, the better.



Built in ABS plastic, the headset itself is very light, the weight will mostly come from the phone but we found it reasonable on the ARCHOS 50b Platinum used on the test setup. The headset could still be improved for better comfort on the nose fitting. As we could test, owners of prescription glasses may not be very at ease as there is little space in the headset for the user to keep wearing the prescription glasses and there is currently no diopter adjustment if the user chooses not to wear glasses.


Our short test of the ARCHOS product worked reasonably well and gave us a rather fun experience.  Combined with the proper head tracking and stereo visualization applications/games, this product should give interesting results for the price. We will have to see if ARCHOS makes design enhancements on the final product, compared to the prototype we got to see here.


As a side note, this ARCHOS headset seem to be very similar to what is found on the Chinese market with devices like the ColorCross / NEJE LJ-01 $36 on

The ARCHOS helium models are current flagship smartphones from the manufacturer, offering an entry level 4G phone for a decent price. Initially shipping with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, it has been some time that ARCHOS has promised Android 4.4 Kitkat to their customers. According to an official Tweet from ARCHOS, it was scheduled to happen “be released before the end of summer ;-)”


Summer ended about a week ago and still no sign of Kitkat, maybe that was the smiley meaning…


New ARCHOS 45b and 50b Helium models with Android 4.4 KitKat


At the same time, new ARCHOS 45b and 50b Helium models are getting listed on French online store, both phones are shown without a price tag and are currently out of stock. (cdiscount product pages: ARCHOS 45b Helium, ARCHOS 50b Helium).

A quick look at the phones specifications show similar characteristics between the b and the original models, one major difference being the operating system version with Android 4.4 KitKat on the b models. In term of hardware, as specification lists the same type of display and screen resolution, QUALCOMM MSM8926 (Snapdragon 400) CPU is identical, camera and battery. We can also find exact same phone size, weight and SAR/DAS values.

Is that some kind of planned obsolescence where you need to buy another phone (with the same hardware ?) to upgrade to a new Android version ? or does the b model really add something new ?

We expect some clarification soon, we will keep you updated when we have more information…


Update: here is a small correction as it seems that I actually missed the dual-sim feature in the b models specifications while writing this article.


Via: site (in French)


A few months ago, Rockchip presented the RK3288, their latest processor announced to be based on ARM Cortex-A17 architecture. The first devices using the chip came out in July and the processor production should now be fully up to speed with more and more Chinese tablets and MiniPC released with RK3288. While most companies selling RK3288 devices today still indicate their product being ARM Cortex-A17 based, this does not seem to be completely accurate, as several proofs are showing that the processor is based on ARM Cortex-A12. Let’s have a closer look !



Why do we think Rockchip RK3288 is ARM Cortex-A12 based ?

The first indicator is related to ARM LTD schedule which initially announced the Cortex-A17 for early 2015.
It seems quite unlikely that Rockchip is offering RK3288 processors based on ARM Cortex-A17 processors since July 2014. Still, there are a few companies offering A17 based devices with the MediateK MTK6595 and the products are starting to hit the market as pre-sales for an availability in few weeks from now (for example Meizu MX4 smartphone).

Rockchip RK3288 technical documentation and discussions

Rockchip datasheet

According to Rockchip Technical reference manual (rev 1.0) the RK3288 is clearly listed as quad-core Cortex-A12.


You can find Rockchip technical reference document here:  Rockchip RK3288 datasheet V1.0.pdf
(also mirrored here: Rockchip_RK3288_datasheet_V1.0.pdf)


Linux kernel discussions

Other hints about the RK3288 being an ARM Cortex-A12 appear in discussions between ARM technical persons and Rockchip employees in Linux kernel groups: [PATCH] ARM: errata: Workaround for Cortex-A12 erratum 818325

Will Deacon                                                                                                                                   Aug 26
On Mon, Aug 18, 2014 at 10:58:09AM +0100, Kever Yang wrote:
> From: Huang Tao <huan…>
> On Cortex-A12 (r0p0..r0p1-00lac0-rc11), when a CPU executes a sequence of
> two conditional store instructions with opposite condition code and
> updating the same register, the system might enter a deadlock if the
> second conditional instruction is an UNPREDICTABLE STR or STM
> instruction. This workaround setting bit[12] of the Feature Register
> prevents the erratum. This bit disables an optimisation applied to a
> sequence of 2 instructions that use opposing condition codes.
> Signed-off-by: Huang Tao <huan…>
> —

The Rk3288 I have advertises itself as an r0p1 Cortex-A12 CPU, so isn’t
affected by this issue.  […]



Using CPUcheck Android application to verify your CPU architecture.

Finally, we have built a small Android application that helps to identify the processor architecture with the values reported by the Linux kernel and the system. This application is available (free) on Google Play: CPUcheck.

You can find a quick video below testing CPUcheck application with a PiPO P4 tablet, an ARCHOS GamePad2 and a Google Nexus 10.

Test results on a PiPO P4 tablet equipped with a Rockchip RK3288 SoC gave the following: quad-core ARM Cortex-A12 at 1.8 GHz

How does the ARM Cortex A-12 compares to ARM Cortex-A17 ?

Earlier this year, provided an analysis of the ARM Cortex-A17 architecture.
In summary, mentions that the A17 appears to be an evolution of the Cortex-A12, the A17 design should be roughly 60% faster than a Cortex A9r4 at a given frequency/process/memory interface while the Cortex A12 is 40% faster than A9r4 under the same conditions.

Also, the ARM Cortex-A17 supports ARM’s big.LITTLE technology (coupling the fast cores with slower, low-power processor cores like the ARM Cortex-A7 ) while the Cortex-A12 does not support it (at least in its first version).

Does it really matter to the end-user ?

Rockchip RK3288 cannot be considered as high-end processor, but it will surely do the job with mid-range tablets as it offers a reasonable CPU power and a decent graphical performance with a graphical processor from the Mali-T760 family . If priced as mid-range budget tablets ($150 to $250) the RK3288 seems to be a reasonable choice if the software is stable, something which took months to reach on Rockchip earlier RK3188 platform…


Thanks to OMA / Crew RKTablets for his contribution to this article and and for supplying a test PiPO P4 device.

ARCHOS has recently unveiled many new items to be released in the coming weeks. We will first check here their mid range RK3288 tablet and the future 4G smartphones.

First comes the ARCHOS 101 Oxygen, a 10.1″ tablet based on Rockchip RK3288 (ARM Cortex A17 quad-core processor). The tablet will offer a 10.1″ full HD 1080p display, 16 GB of storage space and 1.5 GB of RAM. ARCHOS hasn’t revealed details on the display type, camera or battery specs for the moment. The ARCHOS 101 Oxygen should be available in October for £199 / €199.


If you can’t wait, PiPO has similar products to offer, available right now with the PiPO P9 tablet (Rockchip RK3288, 10.1″ 1920×1200 display, 32 GB storage, Android 4.4, 7600mAh battery)

PiPO P9 tablet

PiPO P9 RK3288 Quad Core 1.8GHz Mail T764 10.1 inch IPS 1920x1200 2GB RAM 32GB storage Android 4.4
$240 / ₤150 / €185

Coming later from ARCHOS, faster 4G LTE smartphones with Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 processor

According to an interview given to French website 01Net, ARCHOS CEO Loic Poirier mentioned that the company should offer Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 based devices by the end of the year instead of the Snapdragon 400 currently equipping their Helium flagship 4G LTE models (Helium 45, Helium 50 smartphones and Helium 80 tablet)

The Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 processor is based on a quad-core ARM Cortex™ A53 (supporting both 32-bit and 64-bit code) at up to 1.4 GHz per core, it supports new power efficient ARMv8-A architecture which enables improved instruction set efficiency.

The SoC comes with an Adreno 306 GPU with support for advanced APIs, including OpenGL ES 3.0, DirectX, and OpenCL.

The modem part offers integrated 4G LTE support (CAT4 with speeds of up to 150 Mbps) and we should see some specific versions of the processor with Dual SIM and Dual Active (DSDA) and Triple SIM (TSTS) support.


The Snapdragon 410 would be definitely a nice upgrade to the current Helium devices which are a bit limited in term of processor and graphic performance with Qualcomm Snapdragon 400.

Back to MWC 2014 trade show in February 2014, we have seen the presentation of the ARCHOS 80 Helium one of the cheapest 4G/LTE Android tablet, expected to sell on the market 3 months later at about €249 according to the company Marketing director.

About six months later, it looks like the device is finally ready to hit the market, with the bonus of a reduced price, as ARCHOS released today in their financial S1 2014 results and perspectives: (copied here)

ARCHOS markets since August 2014 the first 4G tablet at less than €200 and strengthens its range of 3G tablets.

In all likelihood, this refers to the 80 Helium.


While this kind of 4G tablet model is still very rare at that price on the market, it seems that ARCHOS once again has made economies on the device. As the specifications mention, the ARCHOS 80 Helium should come with a Qualcomm MSM8926 (Snapdragon 400) processor quad-core ARM Cortex A7 (running at 1.2 GHz, not 1.4 GHz like initially announced) 1 GB of RAM, an IPS 8″ display with a low resolution of 1024×768 pixels, Wifi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0 and a GPS.

The tablet is powered by a 3500 mAH battery, it has 2 cameras: a front one with 2 MPix (was initially announced at VGA resolution 0.3 Mpix) and a rear one with 5 MPix. The ARCHOS 80 Helium will run on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, a relatively outdated version of the system, which is now about 13 months old and is also used on the ARCHOS 50 Helium 5″ 4G smartphone.

As we discovered a month ago, the ARCHOS Smart Home system offers support for devices in the RF 433 MHz band. This feature is quite interesting as it should open home automation control to a wider range of devices with 433 MHz accessories such as power plugs, shutters, door bells and many others.

Integration with wireless power plugs is a great solution for remote control from an Android or iOS device, the cost of RF 433 MHz plugs being rather low, usually in the 20 euros range. In addition, the solution should scale easily as you can connect and control different plugs at the same time provided they use a different codes. We will see in this article there may be some incompatibility issues with some accessories.


RF 433 MHz devices, how do they work

This kind of wireless accessories usually come in 2 pieces: a remote control that emits the command to the end device such as ON/OFF position on a wireless switch, Open/Close position on shutters, etc… At the other end, the command is received by a module in charge of executing the order. The communication is established in one way, there is usually no feedback or other interaction back to the remote control, which does not have the possibility to retrieve the actual state of the plugs/shutters.

The security on the system is usually achieved by a code that helps to pair the remote and each device. This code is generally configured on both ends by DIP switches as you will see at the beginning of the video below.

Limitations on 433 MHz devices control
Most advanced and secure 433 MHz accessories use cryptographic systems that would prevent the ARCHOS Smart Home learning function to work. This is especially the case for some entrance gates, garage door openers or shutters as some of these devices have extra level of security provided by their manufacturer.

Our 433 MHz test setup

We used a Smart Home tablet from ARCHOS kit and one plug and the remote control from the Elro AB440S pack (see below).

ARCHOS Smart Home software requirements
ARCHOS recently introduced 433 MHz support on the Smart Home in latest firmware and apps so you will need to make sure your device is up to date if you want to use RF. Firmware should be dated 20140624 (or later) and Smart Home application from 20140701 or later.


The video below goes thru the whole setup process for testing a wireless power switch:

  • preparing and configuring the power plug and remote control
  • adding “433 MHz plug accessory” in ARCHOS Smart Home, learning the remote codes for ON and OFF positions
  • testing the power plug ON/OFF from the Smart Home tablet
  • using ARCHOS Smart Home on a smartphone (we used a Sony Xperia Z) testing the power plug ON/OFF

Learning procedure: it consists of two steps where you get the ARCHOS tablet to record the RF signals from your remote control. For each power plug, you can learn the ON and OFF positions. Once it has been learned, the tablet will be able to replay the 433 MHz signal for each position. Similarly, for shutters: the learning procedure will get you grab the Open and Close positions.


ARCHOS Smart Home 433 MHz compatibility listing

Support for 433 MHz accessories on the Smart Home is currently limited by design to plugs and shutters.


With this first test, we are starting a compatibility listing, if you know any compatible device please post in the comments section below, we will add it to our list.

Device type Model Where to buy ? Compatible with Smart Home
Power switch Elro AB440S/3AB


Please come back soon for more news and tips on the ARCHOS Smart Home !

ARCHOS Smart Home Connected Objects were expected to ship in April-May 2014 as we reported earlier.

At the end of March 2014, ARCHOS CEO Loic Poirier was posting on Twitter: “4 weeks and it can be yours” together with a link to an Smart Home Picture. Time has passed and 9 weeks later, there are still no sign of the product on the shelves or ARCHOS online store. Asking Poirier about an update on the release date on Twitter did not bring any answer.


As usual with ARCHOS, their communication on release dates should be taken with a pinch of salt. We have scoured the web to find some updates about the ARCHOS Smart Home product release.

ARCHOS Smart Home ready for summer at €249 ?

A recent article on French website mentioned the first product in the ARCHOS Smart Home family should ship starting this summer. (in French: “Dès le début de cet été, nous devrions voir arriver les premiers produits dès l’été 2014″).

As we already reported in March, the starter pack for the ARCHOS Connected Home products should include the Smart Home tablet and six accessories: 2 Mini-Cam, 2 movement detector and 2 Weather Tag (humidity / temperature) sensors. With the new release delay, the price has apparently increased by 25% as mentions a retail €249 instead of the earlier €199.

An early release in the UK ?

In a post on their blog, Clove Technology, a UK company has announced about 10 days ago:

The UK exclusivity runs for a period of one month from June 1st when the first kits will begin shipping from Clove. […] The ARCHOS Smart Home is available for order now, at a price of £199.99 from Clove.

The listed price of £199.99 at Clove is in line with the new price for European markets and may confirm the product price increase.

When the competition is late too

We reported about Webee Smart Home, another automation solution crowd-founded on At first look we found that Webee solution, compared to ARCHOS Smart Home products, offers a really open eco-system supporting more communication protocols and compatible with sensors and appliances from other brands.


Like the ARCHOS Smart Home, Webee Smart Home shipping will be late as well as the delivery to the campaign founders should to be shifting from May to late June.


As announced by Arctablet a few days ago, Archos is planning to launch a new phablet model - the 62 Xenon. Unfortunately, the new...