Tablets

By November 20, 2014 Read More →

The Nokia N1: A yawn or celebration?

nokia-n1-tabletRight now, we are dealing with a tablet influx. Many manufactures are rallying to get their tablets out in time for Christmas and with the Nexus 9, iPad Mini and Air refreshes alongside every company from Acer, Archos and Binatone to own other brands Tesco and Argos hoping to make some fast cash. This year is all about the upgrade as everyone who wants a tablet probably already has one and it’s going to take quite a push to get some to release their beloved companion.

I sit here with my Nexus 10. A device that has is simply a media player on my daily commute. Aside from a little gaming in the evening I rely on Chromebook for work and phone for communications. The Nexus 10 is merely a good screen for entertainment. With Lollipop on it’s way to the device I have no need to be looking elsewhere. Of course as an enthusiast I was curious about the Nexus 9 and having played with one for a day I really would only consider getting one if Lollipop does not speed up the now aging Nexus 10. 

So what will  a Nokia N1 bring to the tablet? Well, it’s not quite a Nokia device, we are seeing something designed by the geniuses at Nokia but built by Foxconn. There is the complicated Microsoft / Nokia relationship that probably confuses most and can really only be summed up by a re-badging exercise. It might say Nokia but this is a Foxconn product.

I guess the easiest way to view this device is the bastard child of so many. Built by the iPad people, designed by the Microsoft people and running the Google stuff. Could this be Expendables the Tablet? All the greats in one device?

Inside the Nokia N1 comes with a 64-bit Intel Atom Z3580 processor clocked at 2.3GHz and 2GB of RAM. There is a PowerVR G6430 GPU. The N1 offers 32GB onboard storage, but there is no microSD card slot to expand it further. The camera is an 8 megapixel rear camera and a 5 megapixel front camera.

Decently speced and nicely priced the Nokia N1 will likely be a hit this Christmas. Enough to tempt folks away from the Hudl II with the Nokia name and oddly the Nexus 9 as it’s main competitor and higher price that should see it as a threat. Personally, it’s not enough to get me on-board. Those who want the ultimate tablet are best spending a little extra and getting the iPad Mini 3 or Nexus 9, or sticking the a yearly purchase and picking up the Hudl II.

 

 

 

Posted in: Editorial, Tablets
By November 10, 2014 Read More →

HTC Nexus 9 hands-on video

N9-grid1-1600A few weeks ago HTC held a small press conference and announced the new HTC Nexus 9.

The Nexus 9 is one of the first devices featuring the latest Android 5.0 Lillipop. This new OS version breathes new life in to Android and unusually for HTC, the Nexus 9 has no HTC Sense overlay so there is a nice clean feel to the UI.

It has been quite some time since HTC produced a tablet and we have high hopes for the Nexus 9. In the video below we start with a short unboxing and then go hands-on with the hardware and a look at the OS and UI.

 The HTC Nexus 9 is available now from Currys. Our thanks to them for the for the review device!

 

 

HTC Nexus 9 specification:

  • 2G Network:     GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
  • 3G Network:     HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100
  • 4G Network:     LTE
  • Dimensions:     228.2 x 153.7 x 7.9 mm (8.98 x 6.05 x 0.31 in)
  • Weight:     425 g (Wi-Fi) / 436 g (3G/LTE) (14.99 oz)
  • Display:    IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors,   1536 x 2048 pixels, 8.9 inches (~281 ppi pixel density)
  • Protection:     Corning Gorilla Glass 3
  • Stereo loud speakers
  • 3.5mm jack
  • Internal memory:      16/32 GB, 2 GB RAM
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot
  • Bluetooth  v4.1, A2DP, apt-X
  • NFC
  • microUSB v2.0
  • Primary camera:     8 MP, 3264 x 2448 pixels, autofocus, LED flash, Geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, 1080p@30fps, stereo sound rec.
  • Secondary camera:     1.6 MP, 720p
  • Android OS, v5.0 (Lollipop)
  • Chipset     Nvidia Tegra K1
  • CPU     Dual-core 2.3 GHz Denver
  • GPU     Kepler DX1
  • Accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass
  • GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS
  • Battery:  Non-removable Li-Po 6700 mAh battery
By October 28, 2014 Read More →

Getting the most out of the Microsoft Surface

8583948813_4bbbb18bac_qRecent innovations in technology and the internet have seen us increasingly consuming more media on the move. The Microsoft Surface is kicking up a storm as the new laptop-meets-tablet hybrid on the tech and entertainment market. Boasting the key perks of each device; with the light weight of a tablet and the processor of a laptop, can the Microsoft Surface really do it all?

 

Key Features

Featuring a 12 inch screen, a fourth generation Intel Core processor and up to nine hours of battery life, the Microsoft Surface certainly packs a punch in the world of technology. Home to three ports and an optional keyboard, it takes the lead where earlier tablets have failed.

Keep it private

Unlike standard tablets, the Microsoft Surface allows for greater security with the regular 4 PIN passcode strengthened by a personalised picture password, meaning you don’t need to worry about sensitive information or even your kids picking up the device and having a go.

Personal touches

Once you’ve downloaded your preferred apps, you can then re arrange and even re name these on your home screen for quick and easy accessibility. You can also link your tablet up to multiple email accounts, social media feeds, networking and business messengers, allowing you to access both your work and personal emails on the go from one device.

Enhancing accessories & tips

Setting up your new Surface with Microsoft security software means that if your tablet is lost or stolen, your data will be encrypted and away from prying eyes. If you’re using the tablet for anything other than writing quick emails then consider purchasing a detachable keyboard as it will make your time much more productive.

As with all modern, powerful technology, battery life is the bane of your tablets performance capabilities. Never get caught short again by purchasing an external battery pack, these light and compact chargers will come to the rescue at your time of need!

To conclude

Although the Surface comes with a higher price tag than your standard tablet, it’s easy to see why. Microsoft has strived to create a tablet-laptop hybrid which shows off the ‘Windows experience’, allowing the user to access everything they need from one portable device.

If you’re looking at purchasing the Surface do some research, as the newer model may better suit your requirements.

 

Image by Jason Howle, used under the Creative Commons license

 

 

Posted in: Editorial, Tablets
By October 22, 2014 Read More →

Nexus 9 UK prices revealed

nexus-9-release-date-578-80The HTC built Nexus 9 has now arrived on the Google Play store and Amazon here in the UK with prices starting from £319 for the 16GB Wi-Fi only version. Other variations include the 32GB pushing the price to £399 and adding LTE connectivity continues to increase the price to £459. This is more in keeping with Google’s Nexus 10 pricing over the last few years. Many are furious at the iPad-esq pricing and it’s easy to see why. Google have made much headway with their cheaply priced Nexus 7 over the last three years and most had hoped for the Nexus 9 to mirror this. It features a 8.9-inch display, supported by a 2.3 GHz 64-bit Nvidia Tegra K1 processor and a 6700mAh battery, high specs for a high price. Oh yeah, it’s made by HTC, who make expensive devices.

Pre-orders for the Wi-Fi only version opened on October 17 – Google is promising that units will leave the warehouse in 2-3 weeks. If you order, expect it on November 3rd. If it doesn’t arrive, just wait longer.

 

Posted in: News, Tablets
By October 9, 2014 Read More →

Unboxing Binatone HomeSurf 844 tablet

vlcsnap-2014-10-07-07h02m40s24Gareth takes a look at a new low end, budget offering from Binatone. Taking a few queues from Apple and Samsung’s similarly sized devices the Binatone Homesurf is a £75 alternative that might suit someone not chasing that high end feel or experience.

Binatone HomeSurf 84 specification:

  • Android KitKat 4.4.2
  • 8” multi-capacitive touch screen
  • Dual core 1.5GHz processor
  • Latest Android 4.4.2 KitKat operating system
  • 1GB RAM and 8GB flash memory
  • Expandable Micro SD storage up to 32GB
  • 0.3MP front camera
  • 2.0MP rear camera
  • High quality loudspeaker
  • Integrated microphone
  • Audio file supports MP3 player
  • Video file supports MP4 player
  • 4 dimensional gravity sensing
  • Battery life 2800 mah

By October 1, 2014 Read More →

Alcatel Onetouch POP 7S LTE pops up at Carphone Warehouse

ALCATEL-ONETOUCH-POP-7S-TAB_WHITE_1One company eager to make a name for itself this year it Alcatel. Recently announcing tmy favourite phone of IFA in Berlin, Alcatel are pushing out a entry level 4G  tablet. Based around Android KitKat and costing a tiny £149.99 this shares many of the same specifications of the original Google Nexus 7 whilst also adding an IR Blaster and screen mirror to push the on screen tablet content over to your TV rought out of the box. For those not worried about size, the Pop 7S support voice calls. Here is the full press release:

Alcatel Onetouch unveils the POP 7S tablet to offer super-fast LTE connectivity at a smart price. It is a super slim and light 4G entry-level tablet that adds a splash of colour and is perfect for streaming music, watching TV or browsing the internet.

Sporting Android KitKat 4.4, the POP 7S is a fun and feature-packed POP series tablet that is easy-to-use and easy-to-choose. It offers a customised user interface and wide range of dedicated colourful accessories. 

ALCATEL-ONETOUCH-POP-7S-TAB_WHITE_2

The POP 7S is one of the most competitive LTE 7” entry-level tablets available to the mass market. At 8.9mm thin and weighing only 285 grams it is ideal to be effortlessly carried in any backpack, satchel or handbag. Powered by a Quad Core processor, the POP 7S allows seamless multi-tasking between different activities such as gaming or streaming music and comes equipped with a 3 megapixel rear camera to capture priceless moments on the go.

With Miracast, IR blaster technology and a pre-installed app, the POP 7S will become the TV’s best friend. It allows users to mirror screens, control their TV and personalise their daily TV entertainment. Its full-featured TV guide allows users to choose what they want to watch and makes it easy to share with friends and family through social media. The POP 7S brings a brand new interaction to consumers between their tablets and TV, reflecting ALCATEL ONETOUCH’s design ideology of bringing smart technology to daily life.

Voice call support means that the POP 7S is able to make and receive calls via a Bluetooth phone – Sidekick, headset or loudspeaker. Users can continue to browse while catching up with friends and family about the latest films, favourite music or online games.

Fun and colourful accessories, designed exclusively for the POP 7S include Smart Flip Cases and colourful back covers to truly personalise the new LTE POP tablet.ALCATEL-ONETOUCH-POP-7S-TAB_WHITE_4

The POP 7S is available in store and online from Carphone Warehouse with an RRP of £149.00 SIM free. 

POP 7S features include:

  • 7” 1024 X 600 WSVGA, IPS Display

  • Quad Core 1.2GHz

  • 3 Mpxl back and VGA front cameras

  • 8.9mm thin, 285 grams

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Posted in: News, Press Releases, Tablets
By September 23, 2014 Read More →

Microsoft tablets that put the fun in functional

14469697956_7cb0aa01e7_hDespite the fact that global sales of PCs and laptops are in decline, several consumers still require functional, practical and workaday machines, which can perform more tasks than standard touchscreen tablets. 

Thankfully, Microsoft’s range of Surface devices makes this possible and you can pick one up at stores including Tesco and popular electrical retailers. In addition to their lightweight construction and expansive displays, they also feature comprehensive operating systems and various input methods. Here’s the full lowdown on all three models:

 

Surface 2

Full of features and incredibly good value for money, the Surface 2 might well be Microsoft’s entry-level tablet, but it still packs an impressive punch. Boasting a 1.7 GHz processor, Nvidia Tegra 4 chip, 2GB of RAM and a 10.6-inch screen, the Surface 2 can deal with a multitude of tasks and applications. When you add into the bargain a two-position kickstand, USB 3, MicroSD slot and Microsoft Office with Outlook as standard, it quickly becomes the best option for those on a budget.  

 

Surface Pro 2

Perhaps the ultimate tablet for professions that require portability and power, the Surface Pro 2 has everything you could possibly need. With an Intel Core i5 processor, 526GB of storage and the option of Microsoft’s entire Office Suite, this particular device takes all the benefits of a PC or laptop but manages to fit it in a truly attractive package weighing just 900 grams. Even so, it features a multitude of connections, commendable battery life and a full HD display. 

 

Surface Pro 3

The latest and possibly greatest tablet offering from Microsoft is the Surface Pro 3. On first impressions, the tablet’s look and feel is difficult to ignore, as the substantial 12-inch display and sleek magnesium frame are outstanding. But it gets better, as the Surface Pro 3 also comes with two 5MP HD cameras, stereo speakers featuring Dolby sound, a full-size keyboard and trackpad as well as a pressure-sensitive stylus. This means interacting with the pre-installed full version of Windows 8.1 is both easy and enjoyable.

So even if you’re looking for some fun from your tablet, you can get a great deal of functionality too with a Microsoft Surface device. Just be sure to choose a tablet that’s right for you and meets your requirements.

Image by Scott Akerman, used under the Creative Commons license.

 

 

Posted in: Editorial, Laptops, Tablets
By July 29, 2014 Read More →

The HTC Nexus tablets

HTC-generic-Tablet-concept-renderSupposedly, HTC is working on three different Android tablets and supposedly they plan to release later this year. On top of that, one of them will could be the Nexus 9 tablet for Google. 

HTC Nexus tablets specification:

  • 8.9-inch display with 281ppi
  • 2GB of RAM
  • 16GB or 32GB storage options
  • 8-megapixel rear-facing camera
  • 3-megapixel front-facing camera

According to the dude @evleaks, a Nexus 9 will have the model name T1 (and could have internal names of Volantis/Flounder as previously rumoured), while the other two unknown HTC tablets will be models T7 and T12. On top of this rumour, it has been speculated that the T7 will be the next Nexus 7 tablet, and that the T12 might be a successor to the Nexus 10.

Posted in: News, Rumours, Tablets
By July 26, 2014 Read More →

NVIDIA Unveils The Tegra-K1 Equipped Shield Tablet

Screenshot 2014-07-23 21.53.50We have seen to rumours, however now we have the details, Nvidia are putting out the Tegra-K1 Shield Tablet. We also have pricing details. Whilst the details are for the US we shall still share them. The Shield Tablet 16GB/Wi-Fi version will cost $299, and the 32GB/LTE model will sell for $399. Additionally, the optional Shield controller will cost $59.

Now for the juicy parts… here’s the primary spec-list:

  • 8-inch Full HD IPS LCD display
  • Built-in stylus that works with Nvidia’s new DirectStylus 2 tech
  • Tegra K1 SoC – 192 Kepler-based GPU cores (with support for some desktop class graphics)
  • Quad-core Cortex A15 processor spinning at 2.2GHz
  • 2GB of RAM
  • Wi-Fi only version with 16GB of built-in storage, and an LTE-equipped version with 32GB of storage
  • Both feature an expansion card slot for up to 128GB of additional storage space

NVIDIA-Shield-Tablet-Tegra-K1-GPU-Benchmarks-OpenGL-ES-31-unreal-engine-4

That’s not all though. This new tablet is more than just internals. NVIDIA have gone all-out by including what they claim are some “world’s first” features for this super-gaming tablet. Here’s a quote from their presser with the details,

String of World Firsts

The SHIELD tablet provides a range of firsts for a tablet:

  • PC Streaming: First to stream games from a PC desktop or notebook, from anywhere in the home – using NVIDIA GameStreamTM technology to stream from systems powered by an NVIDIA GeForce® GTX 6xx series or greater GPU.
  • Cloud Streaming: First to stream PC games from the cloud. Gamers can access the NVIDIA GRIDTM cloud gaming beta, available exclusively to SHIELD owners in Northern California, to instantly stream a library of high-quality PC games, and then save them in the cloud.
  • Twitch and NVIDIA ShadowPlayTM: First to feature Twitch – the leading video platform and community for gamers – which is also integrated with ShadowPlay, an advanced game-capture tool that lets users save and stream their greatest gaming moments. Gamers can stream titles from the SHIELD tablet to friends and foes worldwide. SHIELD Tablet also includes a 5MP front camera to enhance the image of the gamer overlaid on the Twitch gamecast.
  • Console Mode: First to feature NVIDIA Console Mode, which takes your tablet gameplay to your big screen TV. Console Mode transforms the device into a full living-room gaming and entertainment experience. Gamers can set up their SHIELD wireless controller, sit back on their couch and play Android games, browse the web and watch their favorite movies — all in native 1080p HD.

 

 

 

Posted in: News, Tablets
By July 22, 2014 Read More →

NVIDIA Shield Tablet leaked online

nvidia-shield-tablet-leaked-picThere have been many rumours of a NVIDIA Android gaming console over the last few weeks. We don’t have anything new to report on that front, but we do have a solid leak regarding NVIDIA’s upcoming gaming Android tablet from one of the most reliable sources, out pal @evleaks

The NVIDIA Shield Tablet could be one of the most interesting things to happen to Android gaming. In fact, it’s entirely possible there won’t necessarily be an Android gaming console from NVIDIA because, with the proper input/outputs, this could easily become a portable gaming console. We do know that this device is supposed to come with the NVIDIA Tegra K1 SoC or if the newly leaked NVIDIA gaming controller is meant to pair with this device, a likely situation however. 

Either way, Android gaming is only just now evolving to reach a more mainstream gaming audience. This device could be a big step in that direction.

nvidia-shield-tablet-leaked-pic

Posted in: News, Tablets
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