Chinese gadgeteers Giz-China have tested out the $220 ePad, an Android tablet which is clearly “inspired” by the iPad. The verdict of the head-to-head test, it won’t surprise you to learn, is that the tablet is a piece of junk. This is despite the review’s author, Andi, curiously declaring the ePad the winner.
The ePad looks a lot like the iPad, but then the similarities end. The cheap tablet has a plastic back, good for letting through radio-waves and being lightweight, bad for stiffness and strength. Around the sides you see arrayed a laundry-list of ports “missing” from the iPad: microSD card-reader, a USB-port, HDMI port along with a front-facing camera. You also get Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
Then we get to the screen. Here’s what Andi says: “Where as the iPadâ€™s true touch screen offers crisp vibrant colours, the ePad looks dull and washed out [...] The ePad has a terrible screen in comparison.” The ePad uses a resistive touch-screen, the kind you have to push hard to register a click. It is designed to work with a stylus but “Take away that stylus and youâ€™ve got a very stubborn little tablet.”
Onto the OS. Andi declares this round a tie, despite admitting that “Each time I have used an Android device [...] Iâ€™m always left underwhelmed,” and that iOS is “is very simple and quick to use/learn to use.” He even works in another dig at that awful screen.
What about the rest of the hardware, the 1GHz ARM A8 that powers the ePad? It managed to surf the web but after that it would “play choppy video clips and crash when we attempted to open a racing game that looked like it had come from a Commodore 64!! It then refused to do anything before it had had been given a complete hard reset!”
Oh dear. It seems that throwing a tablet together isn’t quite as easy as it might seem. Like a million tiny netbooks before it, the ePad might seem like a cheap bargain on paper, but when you use one, you find you have just wasted a few hundred dollars.
Exclusive: Hands On With The ePad Android Tablet [Giz-China]
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Android ePad Tablet Reviewed. Verdict: Junk
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