Viliv S10 Blade Convertible Netbook/Tablet Review

Updated on 10 June 2018 by

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Multitouch

One of the key features of the Viliv S10 blade is the three-point multitouch screen. We can confirm it works but we are struggling to find a useful application for this capability.

Image zooming and page zooming in a web browser is a staggered, non-fluid operation that is arguably easier using CTRL-+ or the multitouch pad.

The Windows 7 on-screen keyboard is clearly better and more accurate with multitouch. Image rotation works in certain apps and a two-finger right-click is possible on the screen but apart from those limited features, we’re struggling to see a major advantage of a multi-touch screen when you have a multi-touch mouse pad and a keyboard available. Maybe the advantages of multitouch will be unlocked through third party software and will improve over time but apart from some niche applications, multitouch is simply trend-following rather than a serious attempt to improve usability of a desktop operating system.

Windows 7 provides gesture capability (flicks) which are single-touch operations and we’ve been using these. Single touch panning is also good.

Your comments on the use of multitouch are welcome as we continue to learn and test multitouch in various usage scenarios.

Multitouch doesn’t prevent secondary touches affecting the use of single-touch applications. For example, the TIP (touch input panel. used for handwriting input.) is rendered useless if you accidentally touch the screen on a second point.

Viliv S10.jpg (32)Webcam

The built-in webcam is acceptable for Skype although the frame rate was relatively poor on a local network test between two devices.

Application tests.

  • Firefox3.6, Chrome, Opera, Tweetdeck and Twhirl all tested perfectly.
  • Skype V4.2.0.152 works well with built in mic and speaker. Normal quality video works at a slightly reduced frame-rate.
  • YouTube – See above.
  • Google Earth (5.1) worked reasonably well in DirectX mode. Certainly not as smooth as on a desktop or laptop but usable. No multitouch support.

We expect all applications to work with the exception of those that check for certain 3D graphics features.

Full Viliv S10 specifications and more information in the UMPCPortal product database

Firefox load times.

  • Firefox application startup time: 4 seconds.

Page load examples (full script and flash support over Wifi. 10m and two walls away from a hotspot)

  • UMPCPortal: 9 seconds
  • Google News: 1-2 seconds
  • CNN.com 5 seconds
  • Facebook 2 seconds to login screen
  • uk.yahoo.com: 7 seconds
  • Techmeme: 8 seconds
  • Gmail (full version): 7 seconds
  • Google Reader (1000 items): 7 seconds

Overall, page loading times were fast.

Gaming.

We haven’t tested any games with the Viliv S10 and don’t recommend the Viliv S10 Blade as a gaming device.

WiFi/Bluetooth quality.

Bluetooth quality was not extensively tested. The system uses BlueSoleil version 5.4.281 which, in our opinion based on a number of devices running the same stack, is a quality, stable and easy-to-use stack.

We had no problems at all with Wifi configuration or reception. Reception appears to be slightly better than average. The Marvell SD8686 Wifi module supports b and g networks (no ‘n’ support.)

3G quality.

Viliv S10.jpg (2)

We tested 3G reception in out studio which is underground. Reception was impressive and nearly matched one of the best devices we’ve ever tested. The antenna on the Viliv S10 appears to have been well designed.

2.0Ghz Version of the Viliv S10.

JKKMobile are testing the 2.0Ghz version of the Viliv S10 and a full review video will be available here.

Testing notes

Here are Chippy’s personal testing notes we made public

  • Slick – man it looks good.
  • No Ethernet port
  • Silent
  • No heat. [Note: Updated above]
  • Turn Aero OFF!
  • Mouse pad buttons horrible.
  • Mouse pad is multitouch.
  • 3G antenna good reception (not as good as my Gigabyte T1028M)
  • No auto-rotate or frame buttons for rotation
  • Excellent Wi-Fi reception so far (802.11g)
  • Terrible speaker. Quiet, tinny and distorted.
  • 1366×768 is a high dpi. More screen space but needs font and window element size boost for touch and readability IMO.
  • Q. The SSD… is that a 2.5″ or 1.8″ drive? A. 1.8″
  • Q. Could you assess the DRAM under that cover too? A:No
  • Q; Resolution on the webcam? A:not known at the moment.
  • windows 7 screen brightness doesn’t work (only works from keyboard which is useless in tablet mode)
  • Impossible to use in one hand. (basically useless as a tablet) because of weight.

Remember – personal opinions there!

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33 Comments For This Post

  1. UMPCPortal says:

    Full Review: Viliv S10 'Blade' Convertible #Netbook #Tablet – http://bit.ly/cFJPYt

  2. Steve 'Chippy' Paine says:

    RT @umpcportal: Full Review: Viliv S10 'Blade' Convertible #Netbook #Tablet – http://bit.ly/cFJPYt

  3. Ricky Cadden says:

    Man I want one of these. RT @chippy: RT @umpcportal: Full Review: Viliv S10 'Blade' Convertible #Netbook #Tablet – http://bit.ly/cFJPYt

  4. Oliver Herbert says:

    RT @chippy: RT @umpcportal: Full Review: Viliv S10 'Blade' Convertible #Netbook #Tablet – http://bit.ly/cFJPYt

  5. Neil says:

    RT @chippy: RT @umpcportal: Full Review: Viliv S10 'Blade' Convertible #Netbook #Tablet – http://bit.ly/cFJPYt

  6. Jerry Fahrni says:

    Cool device RT @chippy RT @umpcportal: Full Review: Viliv S10 'Blade' Convertible #Netbook #Tablet – http://bit.ly/cFJPYt

  7. Vakeros says:

    Thanks for the in-depth review. I guess the main point of a multi-touch screen is when used in tablet-mode as you can’t access the keyboard or mouse pad.
    You find it to heavy to use in tablet-mode. How does it compare with other netvertibles for weight and size?

  8. Yu says:

    @ Chippy: Doesn’t the low end version come with a 60 GB HDD of yet unknown quality?

    As for weight…
    I think the Gigabyte T1028X weights 1.5kg at a claimed 6.5h battery life.
    The Lenovo Ideapad S10-3t weights 1.5kg but comes with an 8 cell battery, so it should provide relatively good battery life in exchange ( 8h according to cyberblog.de ), it’s the best competitor at that point.
    The Asus EEEPC T101MT weights 1.3kg but comes with less battery life (6h being realistic under laboratory conditions only, but 5h+ still being realistic for actual use if I remeber right). But: It’s the only Convertible Device in the Netbook area I know to provide palm rejection ( the asus software provides a “pen mode” where fingers are ignored alltogether but the stylus is not ). Also it comes with a matte screen.

  9. c1oudrs says:

    The poor speakers kill it for many people. Viliv needs to resist introducing deal breakers like that in their line. Also, 1gb of ram in their high end seems silly. BAD Viliv! Bad. BAD! Viliv is an innovator, no doubt about that. But the competition is getting fierce–its an industry of innovators right now–and Viliv needs to decide if they want to bother to compete. Many companies have jumped in the free for all since the S5, X70 and S7 have come out. A ‘good’ product isn’t enough anymore. Frankly it was heating up with the x70 introduction but now it seems everyone is in the game. Notice that 2 out of 3 of their competitors offer 2gb ram but Viliv is still offering the same ram on their higher ends that they did for the smaller devices last summer. The not-as-sensitive touchscreen is a smaller issue in my opinion but it becomes evident that Viliv is doing their own thing and not paying attention to business. If I was Viliv management I would be having conniptions.

  10. Lucien says:

    How does the screen look when viewing off-center? Especially in portrait slate mode reading books or browsing? Most netbooks will have a falloff in brightness viewing at certain angles.

  11. Lucien says:

    Never mind see now it’s mentioned. Picture would be great to illustrate the color shift in portrait mode from side. At which angle does it occur? Would it be visible looking straight at the screen in portrait mode? Or only if you tilt little bit?

  12. Johannes says:

    Great Review Chippy! I played around with JKK’s Viliv S10 during cebit and it is a great convertible.

  13. umpcaddict says:

    thanks for the review chippy. you’re always on point brotha.

    no upgradable ram? viliv is just trying to stretch their manufacturing capabilities correlating to the times, but the competition is fierce like cloudrs said. and this isn’t really a developer’s machine. windows shouldn’t look like one. what’s windows 7 without aero? what’s the benefit of 6+ hr battery without being able to waste some of that watching hd movies? who really writes up documents and works on spreadsheets for 6 hours on such a small, portable device? multi-touch and no multi-task? =\ that screen would respond better to those gestures if it had more ram.

    and that sd card slot/dip is ugly. it should be on either side, seems out of place.

    it’s got a nice black gloss and matte finish but it seems like it’s a woman’s machine. it’s a bit dainty. i hate how the whole machine rocks when you tap the screen in traditional laptop mode. they should’ve used more straight-edged corners and made it a little bit more boxy and without that staggered height from front to back. men are usually the majority consumer of electronics/netbooks/laptops/umpcs. if i buy this, and that’s a big IF, i’ll probably buy it for my sister lol.

    the weight/size/battery and it being a convertible tablet is a plus but i think this is going to come and go like the asus t91 and the gigabyte m912. viliv should’ve started at $549-599.99 for the lower model and then work up. imo, that would’ve been a better marketing strategy. s5’s price+size+battery opened the doors up for them. they should’ve prepared these price points for the Viliv S12 with 2+ GB ram (because that’s probably going to happen) to ensure longevity and in becoming a household brand/product. they would sell the blade like hotcakes if it had more ram and better prices. they would broaden their consumer base and reach when they release the s12, because the s12’s release could be stretched 2-3 quarters because of the s10’s popularity. people would definitely be excited without questioning the S12’s design or hardware because they would be so satisfied with the s10. who knows, maybe this isn’t their focus product?

    and did anyone notice the scar on the woman’s forearm in this picture? why? because it’s a “blade”? lol. we should run a poll. subliminal benefit vs. lame

    http://www.myviliv.com/eng/img/product/s10/s10_img_9-1.jpg

    i say lame

    one more thing..good thing this isn’t white. i think i saw ken lee with a white one ;)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4KU8wOVpcbY

    i’m sorta looking forward to your review of the n5 when you get a pre-production unit chippy. thanks again.

  14. crabolsky says:

    I happen to agree with most of what you’ve said here. I don’t think the design is too “dainty” but I do agree that it is styled to be as svelte as possible. Unfortunately at the detriment to a number of important elements. I keep trying to convince myself that I cant stretch the dollars to meet my desire to own this good looking bit of hardware. I come close But I still cant justify the $800 (the base model isn’t worth it).
    They have over stretched their aspirations for this one. Or maybe this price point is what is needed to make these netbooks look this pretty? The engineering, tooling and materials surely add up, but to what end?

  15. Debloussie says:

    its exactly what a 1008HA would look like if it were a convertible!

  16. Cody Fink says:

    @DMBarlow http://bit.ly/aws0TM

  17. digitaldoc says:

    Chippy … good luck in your impossible pursuit to find a productivity gain from multitouch. MultiTouch is for fingerpainting !
    I am so happy to see you demoing multitouch in Paint …. AND … doing fingerpainting !

    MultiTouch is a virtually pointless feature … Do you really think if a smart guy like you hasn’t seen even some possible benefits to multitouch … that you will eventually find any ! NO !

    To top it off, any multitouch bonus you find, I’ll be able to do better with single touch and the Mouse Pad ! I promise.

    Note: I do think Microsoft Surface benefits from MultiTouch … and I would want MultiTouch if my entire desk was a Microsoft Surface PC. But MultiTouch on a S10 is without any use other than ….. :)

  18. techb4l says:

    You’re points are dead on. I’ve been trying to understand what are the actual benefits of multitouch netbooks or convertibles for a few months. All the web buzz has continually been multitouch this, multitouch that. I never got it. Chippy is the only player I’ve seen be truthful about this issue. Multitouch isn’t that useful on a Windows netbook/convertible. I thought I was crazy this whole time. While I still may be, it’s not because of this issue.:-)

  19. Simon says:

    Hi all,

    Just a heads up for the European release!

    Think4.com is the Master Distributor for Europe and are currently taking back orders for the S10. Please feel free to contact – Simon Thomas for further information.

  20. Michael says:

    Hi Simon, I am a bit surprised about your comment as I got the following e-mail response from Viliv this morning:

    “The EU area will be next step of launching. […] CarTFT and / or MobilX will launch this device to EU market. If the launching schedule is fixed, they might do some promotion of sales.”

    Though I have seen that Think4 is listed as Viliv’s distributor in the UK, their sales team did not mention it (to me) at all. It would be great if you could provide some additional information here.

  21. Simon says:

    Hi Michael,

    Thank you for your response!

    Yes you are correct in pointing to CarTFT and Moblix with referance to the reseller arm of viliv. We (T4) are the Master Distributor for the EU Channel. We are acting in the capacity of Channel Manager for the S10 in the UK through a number of resellers. I will be looking to update the viliv web site with this information shortly. In the mean time we are taking orders for and on behalf of our reseller network. The resellers information will also be included on the viliv site too.

    Many thanks,

    Simon.

  22. Michael says:

    Hi Simon, thanks a lot for the quick clarification.

  23. Michael says:

    (On a side note: I do not doubt the seriousness of your comment. I am just wondering about the actual stage of the launch as Viliv did not state anything specific regarding EU availability.)

  24. Simon says:

    Hi Michael,

    Again you are correct!

    The anticipated launch for the S10,N5,HD5,P3 is expected to be around the end of April / early May. This is to be confirmed but that is the indicative ETA.

    Thanks again,

    Simon.

  25. Davide-NYC says:

    If this came with an active digitizer option I’d buy it in an instant.
    If they stick a wacom digitizer (capacitive/active) it would take the corporate world by storm.

  26. Yu says:

    Got a point there. With a pricing aimed at the professional market the ability actually to write with a pen would probably be even more important for a convertible device :-/ Asus has demonstrated by now, that it is possible to achieve such with software settings with the T101MT though ( except that I think it is done by reducing the responsiveness of the screen in pen mode to the point where only a small pen tip may easily produce the necessary pressure, because one user reported a joint of his small finger interfering with writing ).

    Though being no optimal solution, it would probably make the device more interesting. Handwriting recognition is nice, but it doesn’t help you much with note taking if you have to rest your palm on the screen’s border…

    Note: Though I speak of “making the device more interesting” I’m still intrigued by some of the features: SSD and fanlessness make the device unique, the battery life is well above the netvertible competition and the high resolution isn’t bad either ( though a 3Qi-Screen would easily make me drop the want for a HD screen as it seems to be available only in 1024×600 so far ). Still I’d rather go for a less premium device. After all, the Asus EEE PC T91 has demonstrated the two (to me) most interesting features, if it wasn’t for the small 9″ form factor I have no use for :-/ (also 9″ means that a 3qi screen won’t fit in)

  27. Tom says:

    Doubt it. Inking has never been very nice to use on tablets. In what situations in a corporate environment would benefit from this device having inking abilities. I’m sure pulling out a small notepad is more convenient than pulling out a big and heavy device to just write down some notes.

  28. techb4l says:

    “…never been very nice…” Huh? That statement sounds like you’ve never actually inked on a tablet PC. One may not find it a compelling input method, but real inking on an active digitizer works pretty perfectly. I’m not a tablet PC guy, but the times I inked on the old OQO were very pleasant.

  29. Tom says:

    I have and it was not as nice as pulling out a notepad and pen or just typing.

  30. 刘苏 says:

    刘苏到访,留个脚印…

  31. Davide-NYC says:

    I agree that the experience is not “as nice” as writing on pen and paper.

    But *NOTHING* beats having all of your notes in a single place and SEARCH-ABLE.

    I’m about to purchase an old TC1100 to keep running along side my laptop to avoid generating un-search-able text in a notepad while I’m on the phone.

    A lot of people (including myself) do not type well enough to type notes in real time without interrupting the flow of the conversation.

  32. Lucien says:

    I just noticed the Lenovo X201 and HP SmartTouch tm2 test video’s and multi-touch works smooth as it’s supposed to be. Check last minute of this video and compare to S10:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CrOq5ScFLUo

    So unfortunately S10 is underpowered to make effective use of the multi-touch features.

  33. Kym Dancoes says:

    Perfect blog post man, I realistically like the look and additionally the feel of this specific internet page. You write fully well, you need to be a aware guy. Will without a doubt come back

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