Monday, 28 May 2012

Can you get an ipad for the price of a kindle?

 Sadly I am afraid the answer is NO  which is not what I had originally hoped. Last week I posted my second and last Zenithink (original plus replacement) back to China. On the first tablet the screen had stopped working after a few days and on the second after about 2 weeks it starting losing settings such as the date and also could no longer access wifi which is a killer for a tablet. Lovely tablet when it was working but terrible reliability. Don't even think about it. I have now got a lovely Samsung Galaxy 8.9" tablet (running the latest version of Android) - but its more than twice the price of the Zenithink. Lesson learned. Original article below.
For the last week I have been testing out a Zenithink Android Tablet - the C91 Cortex upgrade - a 10 inch tablet from China (dubbed the Chinese ipad),  which costs just £120 and runs flash. Its a nice looking tablet, good screen and its slightly long shape makes it good for reading books downloaded from Google Play. The C91 has a great range of expansion slots - I have put a 16GB mini SD card in it and you also have a full USB port and an HDMI connector (for playing it on your PC or TV). One of the things which attracted me to Zenithink is the user ratings - although based on a small sample it comes second only to the ipad on tablet user satisfaction.

There are some snags however - it does not seem to have as wide a range of apps as I would have expected - the android twitter and facebook apps do not run for example. Do you realise that not all apps on Google Play run on all android devices!  Also it does not support my own bioteams app (bummer!) and whilst it runs flash sites OK it won't run the latest version of flash nor the BBC iplayer. It also gets a bit twitchy when the battery goes low and stops running videos it previously had no problems with. For me the screen height is excellent but the width is a bit narrow (just 5 inches deep) - if it was an inch wider it would make the whole browsing experience much better.

But all in all a great machine if you want most of the ipad experience but only want to pay a fraction of the  price.  

Ken Thompson (aka The BumbleBee) blogs about bioteams, virtual collaboration and business simulation at