Tag Archive | "Tablet"

Lenovo Yoga Tab Pro 3 Mini Review

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I’ve been looking for an Android product and although the Sony Xperia Z5 Compact is at the top of my smartphone list I’m still hanging in with a Microsoft Lumia phone, mainly because I’ve been offered a long-term test on the Lumia 950 XL. If you’re into cameras and ultramobile PCs that’s an offer that’s difficult to refuse.

The problem is that I need Android too. There are apps I need to test and an increasing number of smartwatches and IoT devices passing through my hands. A Samsung Gear S2 Classic 3G I’m testing is unusable under Windows, for example. When the Lenovo Yoga Tab Pro 3 turned up this week I was excited to see the bright screen, long battery life figures, LTE and that projector, which of course no-one needs…but everyone can somehow justify. Here’s a summary review of this interesting and well-designed 10-inch Android tablet.

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Yes the Lenovo Yoga Tab Pro 3 is the one with the projector that you’ve probably heard about already. This isn’t a laptop or 2-in-1 mind, despite the Yoga branding.

My daughter already loves the Yoga Tab Pro 3 more than the Samsung Gear VR now that she knows she can lie on her bed and watch Germany’s Next Top Model with and I’m finding it very useful as a test-bed for Android apps. The family watched Shaun The Sheep yesterday and despite it being only 480p resolution it’s fine for family entertainment. I did a few productivity tests too. It’s working out well across a number of scenarios.

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As mentioned, there’s no keyboard included with the Yoga Tab 3 Pro so I connected a USB keyboard and mouse and used it for about an hour as a ‘PC.’  There’s no HDMI output (not even MHL over USB) so it’s not comfortable as a long-term desktop screen. 11.6-inches is the smallest screen I would recommend for productive mobile work.

There’s an Intel Atom X5 inside which drives good web-loading times using Chrome but Tweetdeck on as a tab seemed slow. Atom X5 on Windows tablets isn’t exactly speedy either so that’s no big surprise and an indicator that the Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro isn’t a barrier-free web-worker.

As you know, however, there’s an app for almost everything you need to do on the ‘web’ and most of them are fast and efficient. It makes-up for the so-so raw Web experience and that’s not something you can say about Atom-based Windows tablets.

The ergonomics are good if you’re hand-holding. You’ve got a solid and comfortable gripping point (housing the battery, DLP projector and hinge) if you’re looking for a portrait mode reading pad and the stand works both in upright mode and as a kind-of landscape mode easel which works really well if you’re drinking a coffee at a table.

I resisted looking at the price until I could make an educated guess about its value and had 499 Euro in my head. That’s based on the style, LTE and projector. This model is actually 549 Euro with LTE. 429 Euro without the LTE ($499 in the USA.) Maybe we’ll see 499 offers soon though because the delta between the WiFi and LTE versions is more than it should be. A 50-80 premium is more like the going rate.

Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro problems.

I’m a bit miffed that the Yoga Tab 3 Pro won’t pair with a Galaxy Gear S2 Classic 3G that I’m testing. Bluetooth 4.0 LE doesn’t seem to be supported. Periscope crashes on startup, the camera isn’t that good and it isn’t running the latest Marshmallow version of Android. There’s no fingerprint reader (Hey, if the Honor 5X can offer it at half the price, why can’t this Lenovo ‘pro’ tablet include it?) Yes, there are issues.

Rear projection - Window

Rear projection on a frosted Window.

And how about that projector? It’s low resolution (480p) and weak (50 lumens. Office and home projectors are usually over 2000 lumens) but it’s a lot of fun. You can watch videos in a dark room without any problem but I’m not sure there are many other uses for it unless you’re looking for some creative way to project some advertising on a shop Window. I tried that and  might run it on my studio windows overnight. The scheduled power-off feature will allow me to run videos on the frosted part of the Window for a few hours after dark.

The Lenovo Yoga Tab Pro 3 is  an interesting tablet and if you’re looking for a 10-inch mobile device I advise you to take a closer look at it. The design is good and the screen is sharp and punchy. There’s a 23 Wh battery inside (some sites refer to a bigger battery capacity but I think that’s for the non-Pro version of this tablet that doesn’t have the projector) and my colleagues at Notebookcheck got over 9 hours in their WiFi surfing test (150 nits brightness.) There’s no MHL-over-USB (HDMI output via an adapter) but it’s OTG capable so you can connect keyboard, mouse and storage. Miracast is supported, there’s dual-band AC WiFi, GPS and compass too there’s an IP21 dust and splash resistant rating.

The projector doesn’t seem to take a huge amount of energy and might give you more battery life than on the screen. That surprised me.


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Full Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro review at Notebookcheck.

Wall projection - daylight. 1m distance.Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro summary review.

Good design, quality screen, LTE and projector. IP21 protection, good speakers, great battery life and good performance. The Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro LTE is a really interesting 10-inch Android tablet and I’d really love to have it as part of my ultra mobile PC kit.

Compared to Windows tablets there’s less flexibility at the OS level but a huge choice of apps the make up for it, including Office Mobile. Don’t expect laptop performance here because the Atom X5 isn’t much better than the 2014 Baytrail-T platform.

The price for the LTE version needs to come down a bit but if you do buy it at full price I doubt you’ll be regretting the purchase.

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Next up on UMPCPortal. The Yoga 710 Core m Windows convertible which is also working out as a great productive 2-in-1. (First impressions of the Lenovo Yoga 710.)

iPad Pro 9.7 is an impressive ultra-mobile PC.

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truer_blue_hardware_screen_largeThe iPad Pro 9.7. I had to laugh a little when I saw it on the Apple event stream. Pen, keyboard, ultramobile and ‘the future of PCs.’ Maybe. Maybe not. Over the years of writing at UMPCPortal there’s one thing that’s for certain – 10-inch screen sizes don’t work well for keyboards and therefore don’t fulfill the full set of user requirements for a PC.Despite that, the iPad Pro 9.7 is one pretty impressive UMPC. At 437 grams it’s potentially one of the most powerful ‘PCs’ per kilo you can buy.

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Lenovo X1 Tablet. That keyboard!

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I don’t know how Lenovo did it but they have. The Lenovo X1 Tablet keyboard is amazing, and an engineering highlight. It’s got that classic Thinkpad feel of silky key-tops and solid, confidence-inspiring mechanics. There’s a touchpointer, mechanical mouse buttons and a touchpad. There’s even a backlight. Video overview, including the Lenovo X1 tablet itself, below.

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Google Pixel C 10-inch 2-in-1 launching at a price too high.

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Google has officially launched the Pixel C, a 10.1-inch Android tablet running on a Tegra X1 platform. They’ve also developed a magnetically attachable Bluetooth keyboard and the combo is said to offer a “great touch typing experience.” The price is extremely high for a 10-inch dockable though.

Google Pixel C tablet and keyboard.

Google Pixel C tablet and keyboard.

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Windows 10 10130 ISO available, good for tablet testing. (How-to.)

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I’ve been writing a Windows 10 upgrade guide for the Acer Iconia Tab W4, a decent early Baytrail-era 8-inch tablet with HDMI and, in my case, 3G. It’s relatively stable with Windows 10 10130 as most hardware seems to be functioning and the important tablet UI elements are there. It was difficult to get to this point though because the ISO I downloaded was an older version. Microsoft have now pushed build 10130 ISO up to the Windows 10 Insider Preview download page so you can now install from a tablet-friendly version of Windows 10 and won’t have to wait hours for all the updates.

Installing Windows 10...

Installing Windows 10…

Update: Version 10134 is (unofficially) available now too but you might want to stick to official versions for the best experience.

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Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 10” (Windows) Review

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Yoga 2 tablet just laid back

Lenovo Yoga 2 tablet – laid back!

Going into this review I had a very clear idea of what it was that I wanted out of the Yoga. I wanted something with great battery life, lightweight, moderate computing power and good “lapability”. I hate that word but it does cover that attribute quite well. Those of you who have read my first impressions will know that I was pretty chuffed with the device from the get go. Now a week later have things changed or am I am still in the honeymoon period? Read on to find out more.

Specifications and other information can always be found in the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 2 specifications page.

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Dell Venue 10 Pro summary review.

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I’ve just completed a full in-depth review of the Dell Venue 10 Pro for Notebookcheck. You’ll find thousands of words, lots of pics and many test results here but if you’re looking for my a summary opinion on the Dell Venue 10 Pro, read on.

Dell Venue 10 Pro 5055

Dell Venue 10 Pro 5055

The Venue 10 Pro 2-in-1 is available as a 1366 x 768 tablet but I reviewed the more interesting full HD version with docking keyboard and was very impressed with the build quality and features. It’s clearly for business and education and sacrifices some style to provide a full size USB port, 32 Wh battery and a rubber surround on the casing. The keyboard is great (no battery in this one) and the screen brightness is impressive. I also tested a rubber case for the tablet which gave the device more bulk but increased ruggedness and grip.

The Dell Venue 10 Pro has some issues though and the one you just can’t ignore is the 1.5 year old Atom CPU design. Dell didn’t even chose the high-end version of the CPU – the Z3795 – that you find in other business focused offerings like the HP Elitepad, Fujitsu Stylistic, Lenovo Thinkpad and even the Dell Venue 11 Pro. Instead you get the common-or-garden Z3735 which didn’t even outperform a 2014 Lenovo Miix 2 10 that I’ve had for a while. The Z3795 is not only more powerful (with similar CPU performance to the new Surface 3) but it also enables 64-bit operating systems which helps IT departments keep images down to a minimum and enables a range of Linux-based OS alternatives.

Venue 10 Pro tablet, keyboard and cover.

Venue 10 Pro tablet, keyboard and cover.

There are some good security option on the Dell Venue 10 Pro though. I enabled Bitlocker file encryption by using a Microsoft account and noticed that there are BIOS options to disable ports, cameras and features. Where businesses are looking for a data-collection device to use with in-house software, the Dell Venue 10 Pro could be a good value option.  Security, screen and ruggedness are top-notch for the price.

Total weight is a little on the heavy side and the ‘docked’ thickness is way more than you’ll get with even a Surface Pro 3 and keyboard but you do get a nice keyboard and touchpad and it’s no bigger than a netbook from a few years ago. The 32 Wh battery is worth having too although my review device had lost 16% of its capacity already. Watch out for battery wear if you buy a Venue 10 Pro and return it if you reach 10% wear in 6 months.

If Dell upgrade the Venue 10 Pro with an Atom X7 CPU and a slightly faster eMMC disk then we’ve got a winner on our hands but in its current form it’s a product for vertical markets. Maybe that’s why we’re not seeing it in retail channels yet.

The full review is here.

 

Ramos i10 Pro launches with Dual OS and 3G. i10 Note and i8 Pro in development.

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i8 proAt an event in China today Ramos introduced three Windows 8.1 tablets. Two of these we’ve seen before but one is new. There’s also some information about the dual OS ability of the i10 pro.

We’re expecting variants of these device specifications to appear over time but for today Ramos have pitched three devices are three different segments. The 8-inch i8 Pro runs the Z7340D CPU and comes with the basic Windows 8.1 tablet specifications. There’s a GPS on board but we’re expecting this to be a low-cost Windows 8 tablet. No availability or price has been given but when we spoke to Ramos last week they were indicating that it would come ‘next’ after the i10 pro.

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The Ramo i10 pro is shown with 3G specifications and is the model with the Dual OS feature. Android 4.2.2 is on board with Windows 8.1. The FullHD screen sits above the same basic Windows tablet specifications of Z3740D, 2GB RAM and 32GB SSD. Some talk of 64-bit Windows in some sources leads us to believe that the CPU might get upgraded to the Baytrail-CR variants when they’re fully available. The i10 Pro will be available in 5 colours.

The 3G function is enabled with the Ultrastick 3G SD card from Huawei which we understand is bundled with the i10 Pro. Clearly that might not be the case in other regions.

Indications are that this is a dual-boot solution as we saw demonstrated at CeBIT although final confirmation has been given. A dual-boot solution might not cut across the Google Play non-fragmentation agreement but we wait to see just how much more than basic Android this build is.

The i10 Pro will be available in China from the 25th of March for 2699 Yuan which is $433. Our hands-on video is below.

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The new model we haven’t seen before is the i10 Note which offers Windows 8.1 on a 1280×800 screen but with a pen. It’s not clear if this is a capacitive-only pen. Indications are that the product is still in development.

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We’ll update you as soon as we have new information. We’ve already contacted Ramos for a review device.

A live blog in Chinese from the launch event is available here.

Additional info via pbhz.com

Thx Mike Cane.

Fujitsu Q702 Hybrid in-use at MWC

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2013-02-24-1659After all the Clovertrail testing last week the plans to take a consumer tablet to MWC took a turn at the last minute. The Fujitsu Q702 turned up for testing and it bumped itself to the top of the list based on some amazing specs; the first and most important of which is a total 70Wh battery with 44Wh of that as a replaceable in the base. Hot-swap goodness!

Depending on your stance, this Fujitu Q702 is either a 11.6” ultra mobile PC – a tablet that weighs 850gm and includes a full Core i5 platform, or an Ultrabook when docked.

At 1700 Euro this is not something you buy without thought but here are a few things that might tempt you.

  •  Matt capacitive display with digitizer and pen (stowed on base)
  • 3G (Sierra Wireless Gobi with GPS)
  • 2×2 WiFi
  • Fingerprint reader, VPro and TPM
  • Full SD, Full Gig E. Full HDMI, Full VGA, Four USB ports
  • Array mic, two webcams, very fast SSD
  •  Windows 8 Pro.

My unboxing video is here.

In yesterdays test I got a good 6hrs of work out of the Fujitsu Q702 with about an hour to spare. I have the mains cable with me today but it will probably stay in the hotel tomorrow.

My apologies to those who wanted some Clovertrail action. It was a risk that I was prepared to take but when the Q702 turned up, there were to many reasons to take it instead.

For information on what I’m doing at MWC this week, see this post at Ultrabooknews.

Acer Iconia W510 Review – Windows 8 Tablet and Docking Keyboard

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Acer Iconia W510 _27_

The Acer Iconia Tab has been here for over a month now. Bought as a Clovertrail test device it has turned into a surprisingly usable and flexible ultra-mobile PC. The Acer W510 might be using the same Atom core as netbooks did but the package here is far more than that both in terms of computing and usage flexibility. Read on for the full review of the Acer Iconia W510 and a summary of where this ground-breaking style of smart and ultra mobile PC fits into the market.

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Lenovo Ideatab Lynx Early Review (Tablet Only)

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I’ve never been a big fan of tablet PCs. A ultra mobile PC with 5-7” screen, yes but the classic tablet pc with digitizer and 11.6 or greater screen size was too awkward for me, Too heavy to hold in one hand, with poor battery life and screen input limited to a pen with a focus on handwriting, was far from my idea of fun or productivity. The Lenovo IdeaTab Lynx, an 11.6” tablet PC is a completely different story however and is easily the best 11.6” tablet PC I’ve used, and that includes the original Samsung XE700, a well-crafted tablet PC with Core CPU and a digitizer. The Lenovo Ideatab runs Windows on an Intel Atom platform.

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Now I’m not saying that the Lenovo IdeaTab Lynx is the best 11.6” tablet and I know there’s a huge difference between this and a pro-level Core-based tablet with Digitizer and handwriting input. I must also say that I haven’t fully tested any of the new Core-based Win 8 tablets yet but the Lynx is working well for me and I feel it hits a very nice sweet-spot in the market. Weight, size, price, features, touch, OS. The Lynx is well-balanced and while it’s not going to be a winning consumer tablet, I bet it finds a lot of friends. The Lynx I have here is the 64GB/2GB model which is retailing in my locale for 55o Euro. I only picked it up yesterday but I’ve given it some serious testing over the last 24hrs.

The 11.6” tablet design is very much a productivity-first design, especially when you can add a comfortable keyboard to the mix. At 635gm (1.4 pounds) it’s light enough to serve as a consumption device too though. In portrait mode it really feels like you’ve got the future of the newspaper in your hand. Seriously, if 11.6″ tablets hit 500gm I bet we’ll have another hot segment on our hands. This is the coffee-table tablet!

Is Atom good enough for the job of productivity? It depends on your definition of productivity but it’s fair to say that it’s not going to be good enough for most people as a daily drive for office-type activites. For me, 2013-01-19-1437_q1however, there’s an exciting mix of capability here. As a blogger that writes, and writes, and edits sub-2MB images with the occasional YouTube video edit in 720p, this could really work for me, especially given the battery life and always-on capability. I’d add HSPDA for my ideal mobile blogging setup and a full-size SD card slot would be a dream but this could work out better than a 10” Windows 8 device. I can think of a lot more customers that would get good value out of the Lynx too, not least the long-distance traveler; Having Windows behind the entertaining Metro/Modern/Win 8 Store is perfect for that scenario.

Here’s how I’m using it right now (see image) because I haven’t got the keyboard dock yet. That comes next week.

Here’s a rundown of the device itself.

Screen. Bright, not incredibly punchy in terms of color but is IPS which is a must on a tablet. 1366×768 is OK for me but I know that many would expect more. For reading, there would be an advantage with 1600×900 of course.

Build. Strong. No flex. No creaks. Plastic back feels a bit cheap. One thing I must point out is that the edges are not smoothly chamfered which could have given the use a more comfortable experience. If the Lynx was any heavier it would have been a serious negative point.

Ports/features: No rear cam. Micro ports could be a pain (usb, hdmi, sd on the tablet.) Speakers are loud, not brilliant quality. Dual-array mic. There’s a micro-USB to USB converter included and you can plug in a micro-USB charger which seems strange considering it’s a host port. Check out the unboxing video, below, for a closer look at the ports.

Software: Apart from a Norton package (removed immediately) and a Sugar Sync service (Acer cloud sync) it’s refreshingly free of additional software.

As for performance, you shouldn’t expect much difference between Clovertrail tablets due to the high level of integration inside – due to Connected Standby requirements. (Always on.) The Lenovo Ideatab Lynx does, however, beat the Acer W510 on PCMark7 purely because the eMMC write speeds are a little faster. On every other benchmark the two devices were almost exactly the same. The WiFi appears very slightly weaker on the Lynx which is a disappointment. It has the same Broadcom WiFi chipset as the Acer but I was hoping for better antenna design. In general the WiFi is relatively weak.

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2013-01-19-1440All Clovertrail Windows 8 tablets are always-on capable but this one has a nice little trick because the micro USB port on the underside can be used to charge the device. This also serves as the docking port so clearly the dock will charge the tablet whenever it is connected – a battery-to-battery charging setup that wastes quite a bit of energy. I’ve just connected in a pocket USB charger which can deliver 1000mA and the device is just managing to charge at a very very slow rate. I doubt it’s pulling the full 1A available. This is the first time I’ve ever charged a PC from a smartphone power pack. You can also see I’m using a Bluetooth keyboard. Total cost was about 55 Euro for the charger and keyboard. The Lenovo Lynx keyboard costs 155 Euro! One other advantage to this charging setup is the extremely small and light charger which delivers 5.2V up to 2000ma, similar to some tablet chargers. I love this idea of Micro-USB charging.

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I’m not sure you’d need this charger during a full day out though because battery life is as good as I’ve seen on the Acer W510. I’m sitting here typing with WiFi on, Bluetooth on and screen-on in about 2.5W of usage – enough for about 10 hours typing from the tablet battery alone. Based on what I’ve measured on Clovertrail before, you’ll struggle to get less than 6hrs battery life from the tablet. Video playback with WiFi off should run for over 10hrs if I have my maths right.

A quick word on Clovertrail performance now. It’s Atom, as we know it. It’s not a powerful compute platform but it returns a full and accurate web experience faster than most Android tablets. The graphics performance has been pumped up a little over previous generatios too; I was surprised how smooth a game of Reckless Racing was from the Windows 8 store. Audio playback and video playback hardware is included along with accelerated video encode. You’ll get about 2X the render performance that you saw on Netbooks which brings short 720p clips into scope at around 1X real-time rendering.

The SSD is not a SATA drive on any of the Clovertrail tablets as Clovertrail only supports eMMC which is usually soldered-on just as it is on Android tablets and the iPad speeds aren’t stellar but it’s acceptable, rugged, silent and efficient. 75MB max read, 33MB max write (sequential.) Oh, on noise – there isn’t any. No fan here!

I’ll leave it there for now and hand-over to you for questions. The keyboard dock will arrive some time next week and I’m really looking forward to that because if the keyboard is typical Lenovo style, I’m going to get on very well with it!

The unboxing video and a few more pics are here.

Surface Pro Latest Details from The Verge + Chippy Analysis.

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Microsoft Surface Pro Image

The Verge have just posted a very interesting and detailed hands-on with the Microsoft Surface Pro. I sent out my  Surface Pro Performance Preview late last year but this hands-on, by Tom Warren, is worth taking a close look at too because it covers more than just the internals. You can read my thoughts below or just jump to The Verge.

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Top 10 Ultra Mobile PCs

Acer Aspire E11 ES1
11.6" Intel Celeron N2840
Acer Aspire Switch 10
10.1" Intel Atom Z3745
HP Pavilion X2 10
10.1" Intel Atom Z3745
Lenovo IdeaPad A10
10.1" ARM Cortex A9 (Dual-Core)
HP Spectre x2
12.0" Intel Core m3 6Y30
Asus E202
11.6" Intel Pentium N3700
Lenovo Ideapad Flex 10
10.1" Intel Celeron N2806
Lenovo ThinkPad P40
14.0" Intel Core i7 5500U
Asus Transformer Book Flip TP200
11.6" Intel Pentium N3700
Asus Transformer Book T100HA
10.1" Intel Atom X5 Z8500