Goodhour, Synapse Circuit Readers! Thank you so much for reading my articles! Here I am at crazy o’Clock writing up this last review for the hour!
Yes, it’s getting to that time again... Time for Christmas! If you are looking for an inexpensive tablet for you, child or children then read on!
#Tesco #Hudl2 #Android #AndroidTablet
Last year, UK super-mega-market chain put out a 7” tablet, the Hudl. It was okay, the design was a little, uhm, tacky. A tablet reconstructed out of recycled baby potties; that’s what the first incarnation reminded me of. It wasn’t going to challenge the Google Nexus 7 but at the very least it was a cheaper alternative which wasn’t too bad for the purpose of general entertainment. Being a Tesco product it gave consumers the confidence that it was a worthy family tablet.
Hudl2 came out a couple of weeks ago and I must say that the design is so much better...
DESIGN: FORM & FUNCTION
Hudl2 has undergone a wonderful transformation! It’s sleek, slim and rubberized to ensure that it can take some knocks that children will dish out! I actually like the 8 different colours available: Jazzy Blue, Zesty Orange, Slate Black, Rocket Red, Tropical Turquoise, Dreamy White, Perky Purple and Bubblegum Pink. Dare I say it that these colours should appeal to women of a non-technical background, children and men who are tired of these black devices like I am!
At the back are the two large mesh speakers and the main 5MP camera.
The overall effect is very pleasant to look at and it feels good in the hands. It’s quite light.
The screen is quite decent and the way it has been put together makes the 8.3” HD screen seem smaller considering the rather large bezels. The large bezels does go quite a way to prevent the screen being touched when held – especially by a child.
Summary: A very good improvement upon last year’s slate!
HARDWARE: POWER RATINGS
For £129 you do get some pretty powerful hardware: 8.3 inch 1920 x 1200, Intel Atom 1.83GHz quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM, stereo speakers with Dolby optimised audio, 5 MP main camera, 1.2 MP front-facing camera, 16GB storage and 32GB microSD card! I couldn’t get an exact fix on the battery other than it lasts up to 8 hours!
The hardware pushes things along quite nicely; the interface is pretty snappy but at times the Tesco user interface was a little sluggish. We’ll get to the software in a bit...
To sum this section up: The hardware is very, very good for the asking price; 1.83GHz of quad-core CPU is very satisfying. In addition the 16GB storage is great and should store enough apps and media from the 5MP camera. It’s a good move by Tesco to add expandability with a microSD card up to 32GB!
ANDROID & DEFAULT APPS
It’s good to see that Tesco has KitKat 4.4.2 running on it. But as with most user interfaces on top it can slow the process down somewhat. There is occasionally some noticeable lag and that happens when switching between apps and some games. This can be solved by ensuring that you stop apps running in the background when going from intensive applications that uses a great deal of media such as video and graphics.
Another way to improve the lag is to install another launcher that could reduce the lag a great deal.
Tesco has placed its shop specific apps and widgets, as you’d expect, as a main feature. In addition as a parent, you can set-up different user profiles that are child friendly. The time on the tablet can be set and website can be prohibited too! Nice!
Summary: Hudl2 uses Android KitKat 4.4.2 and it may be possible that Tesco has factored in an upgrade to Android 5 Lollipop! Tesco’s user interface overlay isn’t bad but I feel that it attributes to the occasional lag which may be reduced by installing a launcher such as Nova (Prime) instead! If you are a regular Tesco shopper the specific apps and widgets should help to make your shop more economical.
USAGE: DAY TO DAY
Because of the inspired redesign I really enjoyed using the Hudl2. The one let down for me was the speakers which sounded very, very tinny! As you should know by now I dabble in music composition and I have been looking for a tablet with a decent sound in order to do so. I thought the Fonepad 7 LTE ME372CL was going to be satisfactory and it wasn’t. The same thought occurred to me with the Hudl2 looking at the “Dolby optimized” speakers that quite frankly look weaponized! The speakers sound like a wet fart coming out of them! Yes, you will be able to enjoy video from YouTube, BBC iPlayer, etc but the experience is little more than watching and listening on your smartphone – depending on what you’ve got! The Motorola Moto G second generation with its stereo front-facing speakers are quite loud and not as tinny as is the Samsung Galaxy S4 and Note 2! Tesco really ought to put more effort in the speakers for Hudl3! In fact, Tesco ought to consider a tablet aimed at adults as Hudl2 is proving to be quite a success! For a little more cash Tesco could up the hardware ante to include a stronger set of speakers (possibly at the front).
But these criticisms are not meant in a harsh way; the Hudl2 is a very usable everyday tablet!
At £129 the Hudl2 can be an additional tablet specifically for a child or children while you enjoy a more powerful beast such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab S that boasts a superior screen, CPU, and everything!
I see the Hudl2 as a multifunctional tablet:-
It can be used as a children’s teaching aid.
In the kitchen it can be used to follow recipes.
For the older 11 to 16 year old it just might come in handy to do school homework.
Less demanding adults can use it as a portable entertainment device to access the Internet, YouTube, social networks, receive email, etc. Fling it in an over the shoulder bag and away you go!
I give the Hudl2 a solid gold because the hardware is very good for the money and the build is solid! The 8.3 screen is quite nice for watching movies and working with productive apps such as Google Docs for example. You won't be disappointed!
8.3 inch 1920 x 1200
Intel Atom 1.83 GHz quad-core processor
2 GB of RAM
Android Kitkat 4.4.2 operating system
Stereo speakers with Dolby optimised audio
5 MP main camera
1.2 MP front-facing camera
16 GB storage
32GB microSD card
8 hour battery life
Dual band Wi-Fi, micro-HDMI
8 colours: Jazzy Blue, Zesty Orange, Slate Black, Rocket Red, Tropical Turquoise, Dreamy White, Perky Purple and Bubblegum Pink.Pre-loaded with Parental filter and controls
There you go!
Things to think about!
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