4 AF­FORD­ABLE TABLETS

Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - TEST BENCH -

BAG IT OR JUNK IT?

ZEN UL­TRATAB A 100 Zen’s first tablet, the Ul­tra Tab A100, un­doubt­edly has the best de­sign in the price bracket. The 10.5mm waist-line helps main­tain the 295 gm weight that makes it com­fort­able to hold for long du­ra­tions. The 7-inch ca­pac­i­tive dis­play dom­i­nates the front with no space for any hard­ware keys. The tex­tured back re­minded us of the Acer’s Ico­nia Tab. While the tablet can be used in por­trait and land­scape ori­en­ta­tions, the power/lock key and vol­ume con­trols are more handy in the lat­ter. Even the on­screen key­board can be op­er­ated in both the modes.

Along with the smart looks, the tablet also fea­tures the lat­est An­droid 4.0 Ice-Cream Sand­wich oper­at­ing sys­tem. The per­for­mance is im­pres­sive and for that we have to thank the 1.2GHz pro­ces­sor paired with a 512MB RAM. The tablets can ac­cess the net over a Wi-Fi net­work or us­ing an USB don­gle. The tablet comes pre­loaded with apps like AstroSage Kundli, BSE/NSE, Doc­u­ments to Go, iBrowser, Free Dic­tio­nary, In­dia News­pa­per, mig33, Traf­fic Won­der. On the down­side, the tablet has no rear cam­era, the view­ing an­gles are poor and there are no HDMI ports.

For R6,199, the Zen A100 is a steal.

` BSNL PENTA TPAD WS802C The Penta TPad WS802C from BSNL does not be­lieve in blindly fol­low­ing the com­pe­ti­tion. For, un­like them, this has an 8-inch touch dis­play that is re­spon­sive and fast. The white plas­tic body, how­ever, doesn’t have a feel­good about it de­spite the sturdy build. The wide white bor­der around the dis­play add to the style quo­tient and does not ham­per user ex­pe­ri­ence. Meant to be used in the land­scape mode, the front fac­ing cam­era and a set of ca­pac­i­tive keys have been placed on the right side of the dis­play. On the right panel are mi­croSD, mic, OTG, HDMI, host ports and a 3.5-mm jack. Next to the power key on the top are the vol­ume con­trols. There is also a SIM card slot at the bot­tom for us­ing BSNL’s 3G net­work.

The over­all user ex­pe­ri­ence was bet­ter than some of the other tablets that we have used. Nav­i­gat­ing through the home­screen and menu was quick with no lag in launch­ing the apps. The de­fault browser too was swift and we had no trou­ble down­load­ing apps from Google Play. In fact, a host of apps are pre­loaded. Oper­at­ing on An­droid v4.0, Ice-Cream Sand­wich, this tab has a 1GHz pro­ces­sor on­board, paired with 512 MB RAM.

BAG IT OR JUNK IT?

A good tablet, but not worth the price.

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