Recently my review of an 8th Generation Kindle was published and it was something I had not seen for a number of versions. Here another such items a Fire Tablet which I see – over the years - I had tried three previous versions, now it comes with Alexa built in so it is possible to talk to your Tablet. So what exactly has been happening with the Fire Tablet recently?
The Fire 7 tablet from Amazon measures 19x11.4x1cm and weighs 288 grams. The viewable screen is 9x15.2cm which gives the diagonal imperial measurement of 7inches. A full charge via trickle charge is 3½ hours boot up is 20 seconds and shutdown is 3 seconds. Going around the outside has the micro USB slot on the right side, the base is clear; the right side has the speaker near the base. The top has volume up and down buttons, 3.
This is neither large nor heavy so ideal to use when out and about. A black sandwich with silver grey slices, it is a Notebook and a Tablet running the latest version of Windows 10 V1803. Three sides of the screen have tiny edges the forth the bass is the less than usual place to find the webcam. There are other surprises like only USB ‘C’ ports.
The Dell XPS 13 "2-in-1" convertible laptop measures 30x19.5x1cm at the front and 1.5cm at the back it weighs 1212 grams. The diagonal imperial measurement is 13inches As this folds back on itself the rear is clear of any ports. The left side has USB ‘C’ and headset 3.5mm socket along with a button to show the current battery state in 20% increments. The front is also clear apart from an LED to show when the unit is on.
At some point in your life you will probably be advised that it was rude to point with your finger – I know I was, However modern technology constantly encourages you to ignore this advise as you need to point & touch screen areas in order to carry out actions.
I regularly take delivery at my front door of review samples arriving by courier. These deliveries generally require me to sign a smartphone / tablet handheld device either using my finger or stylus. Often, in the case of the former method, nothing would register on the screen. However, when using a stylus, the courier would get some visible evidence of a scrawl although it would bear little resemblance to my actual signature.
While this is a Notebook as it has a keyboard it is more likely to be used as a Tablet as the keyboard folds back behind the screen and then you have an excellent touch screen Windows unit that even comes with a stylus for accurate work. If fact the keyboard can even be totally detached should you wish.
The Acer Aspire Switch 5 measures 28x20x.1.5cm and weights 1311grams with the keyboard being 390grams of the total weight. The viewable screen is 35.5x17cm which gives the notional diagonal imperial measurement of 12inches, the screen display is 2160x1440 at the default 150% display.
While this can be used as a notebook the keyboard is not fixed and the screen would need propping so this Latitude device is really a Tablet with a keyboard attached so probably best described as a Tablet/Notebook to be accurate.
The Dell Latitude 5285 measures 29x21.5x1.3cm and it weighs 1251grams. It has an 82 keyboard with the alpha keys being full size. There is a hinge behind the keyboard that can have the screen upright and no space between the function keys and the screen or the other way and over 1cm gap between the two. Around 1.3cm is the gap between the edges and almost 8cm clear in front of the keyboard with the 10x5.5cm trackpad mounted 8.5cm from the left and 10.5cm from the right side.
This is a larger Android Tablet that has an ‘approved by Google’ label. I am told not many tablets have. It comes in quite a large box for an Android Tablet. There are three different Android Tablets in the range I was sent the largest the 10inch offering, I hope to get a smaller one soon.
This 10" Android powered tablet from Time2 measures 24.5x17x1cm and weights 513grams. The viewable screen is 21.5x13.5cm which gives the notional diagonal imperial measurement of 10inches. The right side has the volume up and down controls and below that the on/off button. The base and left side are clear, the top has micro USB connection, headphone socket and behind a lift off door are Micro SD Card slot and SIM slots, also in this area is the rear 5MP camera.
This is a lightweight Windows Notebook/Tablet with – for me anyway – the all-important touch ability. Other things that might tempt you are USB ‘C’ and narrow screen borders on either side or the screen and the lack of Bloatware pre-installed.
The Lenovo Yoga 520 measures 32x23.5x1.5cm and it weighs 1710grams. The viewable screen is 31x17.5cm which gives the notional diagonal imperial measurement of 13.7 inches, it would have been nice to have 1920x1080 display but the default is 1366x768 which becomes noticeable when viewing web pages. The left side has DC input, HDMI output, USB and USB ‘C’ ports and a 3.5mm socket for headphones. Both the front and back are clear, the base has a pair of speakers.
This is both a Notebook and a Tablet computer. It is of course quite light which is nice if you are walking around with it all day but that means compromises the main one for me was the lack of a full size USB port which for some might be a problem.
The Acer Spin 7 measures 32x22.5x1cm and it weighs 1341grams. The diagonal screen measurement is 14inches and the recommended display is 1920x1080.This is an updated version of one the units I got to briefly try during last year’s Glasgow visit. At that point it had Windows 1511 and now via updates it has Windows 1703. It has on/off button on the left and beside this is a volume rocker, both the front and back are clear. The right side has a 3.
Not just another Tablet/Notebook this looks very different and while it has an attached keyboard there is nothing showing when it is turned off and it can also be used with a (pen) supplied as a drawing area altogether taking things in a new direction.
They do a PC and an Android version I was sent the Android one. It is extremely thin and could even be described as a book because of the way the hinge looks, it is 25.5x17.5x1cm, the last figure the thickness is at the back and its even less at the front, it weighs 690grams. The viewable screen is 21.5x13cm. Everything about this unit is minimized.
As you might expect from its Toughbook classification the FZ-Q2 is a product that has been developed for use by professional field workers who require a device that can withstand the rigours of a workspace environment.
Developed by Panasonic, the FZ-Q2 combines a touchscreen element, which can double in the role of a laptop screen or tablet, with a spill resistant keypad. Whereas other 2-in-1 laptop products that I have checked out arrived as a single unit, my review sample of the FZ-Q2 was delivered boxed as two separate units packaged within their own boxes.
Named after a planet, Venturer’s tablet comes with a sub-£50 price.
The Mercury 7L is a tablet running the Android operating system. As part of the RCA brand of products, this tablet has been brought to the UK by Venturer, one of the largest manufacturers of audio and video products. This product will be available priced at £49.99 from Asda.com. With dimensions of 185 x 115 x 11mm (H x W x D), this tablet weighs 276g.
Adding to its range of products available in the UK, Venturer has released the Saturn 10 Pro.
This product combines the functionality of a mini-laptop with a touch screen and a 10-inch tablet. Both elements run the Android operating system. Priced at £129.99, the Saturn 10 Pro will be available from Asda.com. When operating as a mini-laptop, the Saturn 10 Pro has dimensions of 260 x 175 x 28 mm (W x H x D), when in its closed state, and weighs 980g.
Having told you about a Panasonic ToughPad now onto the really ‘tough boy’ of the group the ToughBook. This is built to withstand environments that you really should not expect a computer to function in, it has even been launched outside a weather balloon and still worked when it came back to earth.
The Panasonic ToughBook CF-20 measures 27x23x3.5cm and weighs 1750grams. The viewable screen is 21.6x13.6cm 2which gives the notional diagonal imperial display of 10.1inches which means you can use the Mobile versions of Word/Excel/Power Point for free. However the screen resolution is higher than the PC norm of 1920x1080 you have 1920x1200 which is WUXGA.
Having told you about the Swift and the Spin we come to last new model that was launched last November in Glasgow this is the Switch. While I would describe the Spin as a Notebook/Tablet this unit the Switch is a Tablet/Notebook.
The Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 measures 29x20xjust over 1cm. and it weights 1275grams with the supplied keyboard attached and 909 grams without it. The attachment is very magnetic and just presents the two parts close together and they click in place. While the keyboard is solid the Tablet part would need to be propped against something without the stand that flips open from the Tablet you then have a very useable Notebook. The keyboard has 81 keys and the alpha keys are full size, there is .
Those of you who read about my trip to Glasgow in November last year would have been waiting for the next part of the Swift/Spin/Switch story the three groups of new notebooks launched there. The Swift arrived swiftly and you can read that part published at the start of January, the Spin has just arrived at the start of March but it does – joy of joys - have Windows Anniversary update (1607) pre-installed.
There are several models in each range and what you get – hard disc, processor and memory etc. - will depend on where you purchase it. The unit I was sent has an Intel i5 quad core Processor, 8GB RAM and a 256GB Drive and as stated it comes with the Windows 10 Anniversary edition (1607) pre-installed. It weighs 2070grams, and it is 38x24.5x2cm the last figure reduces to 1.5cm at the front. This is both a Tablet and a Notebook hence the name ‘Spin’.
Having recently told you about a Kurio Tablet that although designed for the younger user could equally well be used by an adult that comes with Windows 10. Here a Tablet that comes with a rubber sleeve that could withstand a knock or three.
Once booted this is a nice Tablet which could be used by an adult and you can clear 2.5GB of items from memory by removing the majority of the 51 games pre-installed. However if you do then the Tablet would no longer appeal to a child. It has 5GB of memory with the games loaded 471MB is available, and 2.48GB of free memory with them removed.
A reasonably priced Tablet produced by a company in the toy field but equally useable – without restrictions – for an adult. Unlike a lot of recent Tablets this comes with a detachable keyboard and even the latest version of Windows 10 (v1607).
Kurio describe it as ‘2 in 1 Tablet + PC.’ It is creamy white with blue keyboard and screen surround. The keyboard is a little smaller than full size and has 61 keys these are just about typeable for an adult but ideal for a child. This unit has excellent Wi-Fi and Bluetooth built in. I found the units five point touch perfectly acceptable. The viewable screen is 18x12cm with the notional diagonal display of a tad under 9 inches. The screen display is 1280x800 pixels.
If you expect your Tablet to have a hard life then you are better off paying more and getting one that will survive knocks and drops and even a degree of getting wet. In fact Panasonic launched another of their Toughbook’s on a weather balloon to the edge of the earth’s atmosphere and then brought it back by parachute and it still worked.
If you expect me to give it such a test you are mistaken, however I did take it out and about and while the temperature was below freezing but it was not nearly as low as those for the one below the balloon. I did use it in drizzle without problem. However my job is to review what is put before me and this is a powerful Windows 10 unit.
A tablet that comes with a keyboard, when the keyboard is attached then Hotspots become available so while out and about you can get 3G and even 4G coverage. When detached from the keyboard it’s a tablet that can take advantage of Wi-Fi wherever you are.
The Alcatel Plus 10 measures 26x14.4x1.5cm the tablet itself is 8mm thick and the total weight is 816 grams with the keyboard attached the keyboard being 362 grams of the total weight. On the left side of the keyboard is a USB port and on the right side a micro USB port as well as a micro SD slot. The keyboard has 67 keys and on a 1cm strip behind the keyboard are three LEDs and a 3G/4G toggle. Both the left and right side of the keyboard have a 1cm strip clear.
This is a Notebook and a Tablet; the 11.6inch screen can show 1366x768. As it’s a Tablet as well as a Notebook it of course has touch and then Windows 10 starts to make sense, not for Cortana but for the on screen annotation ability.
The Acer Aspire R3-131T measures 29.5x21x2.1cm the last figure at the back and it is only 1.5cm at the front, it weighs 1509grams. Going around the outside, on the left is an Ethernet port, HDMI, USB3, USB2 and finally a headset port. The front and back are clear, the base has reversing speakers, this leaves the right side that has volume rocker, two pin hole LEDs, on/off button and DC input. The viewable screen is 26x14.5cm which gives the notional imperial diagonal measurement of 11.6inches.