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Venue 7 and Venue 8: Dell unveils its new Android tablets

Earlier this month, Dell announced the impending arrival of two new Android tablets in its Venue line, the Dell Venue 7 and the Dell Venue 8, and they are now officially on sale at Dell's online store.

The devices will set you back a $150 (£92.77) or $180 (£111.33), respectively. What's the difference between the two? Truth be told, not that much. Both tablets run Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean), with an expectation that they'll get the upgrade to Android 4.3 Kitkat in the immediate future. Both rock a 1,280 x 800 IPS display; as you'd expect, the Venue 7 does so on a 7in display, whereas the Venue 8 sports an 8in screen.

Additionally, both tablets run an Intel Atom Clover Trail+ processor. However, the Venue 7 does differ slightly from the Venue 8 in that regard; the former runs a dual-core Z2560 chip that can reach speeds of up to 1.6GHz, whereas the latter runs a dual-core Z2580 chip that maxes out at 2GHz.

Otherwise, the list of similar specs continues on. Both tables run with 2 GB of onboard memory, and both come with 16 or 32 GB of storage (upgradable via an included microSD card slot) — sort of. The Venue 7 is locked to 16 GB, whereas those purchasing the Venue 8 can elect for a smaller- or larger-capacity model. A 5-megapixel rear camera and 2-megapixel front camera grace each device. Connection-wise, each supports a Wi-Fi connection up to Wireless-N, as well as Bluetooth 4.0 and GPS connectivity.

While there's been plenty of talk that both tablets support an optional HSPA+ modem, we didn't see the option to add one – or any mention of HSPA+ connectivity – when attempting to purchase a Venue 7 or a Venue 8 ourselves (as a test, that is).

The Venue 7 and Venue 8 aren't Dell's first Android tablets per se, though it does depends on whether you count the company's previous Streak line of devices more as "phones" or "tablets" as a result of their small size. Yes, we've entered the dreaded world of the "phablet" again – that oft-feature buzzword about oversized phones (or shrunken tablets) that just won't seem to go away.

The Venue 7 and Venue 8 are expected to start shipping on 25 October.

Image: Dell