Budget tabs with big screens

Source : BUSINESS_STANDARD
By : Abhik Sen
Last Updated: Mon, Mar 25, 2013 04:28 hrs
Keeping a tab on technology

We always want more - more wealth, more fame, more power, more friends, more bandwidth and more screen area. Okay, the last two were my additions, but any self-respecting gadget lover will nod in agreement. And, as Indians, we know how to extract the maximum from every rupee we spend. No wonder then that we want tablets with the performance and form factor of Apple's iPad, but at practically a third of its price. With that noble thought in mind, here's a list of Android-based tabs which fit the bill



Spice Stellar Pad Mi-1010
You may be forgiven for mistaking the device for an iPad at first glance, but look closer and you'll notice it looks a tad different. The screen is a pleasure to use, thanks to its vivid colours and the right contrast. Thanks to the Mali quad-core graphic processor, gaming is also loads of fun. The battery life is decent and the rear camera is good for casual shots. The speakers, though, sound harsh at loud volumes. Spice also bundles a cover along with the tablet.

Price: Rs 12,999
Screen: 10-inch 1280x800 10-point touch IPS
OS: Android 4.1.1
RAM: 1GB
Processor: 1.5 GHz dual core
Memory: 16GB internal, expandable up to 32GB via microSD
Camera (rear/front): 3MP/VGA
Battery: 7600 mAh


HCL Me G1
Another dead ringer for the iPad; the only way to distinguish this one from the real deal is the absence of a home button in front. The tab packs a punch in terms of performance, and gaming is also smooth, thanks to its powerful processor. The sound output isn't too bad either. This expensive device isn't helped by the fact that it doesn't support the Google Play Store. Also, we expected a better rear shooter at this price. Nonetheless, it's a good device if you can make do with HCL's Me app store.

Price: Rs 14,999
Screen: 9.7-inch 1024x768 XGA multi-touch IPS
OS: Android 4.0.4
RAM: 1GB
Processor: 1.2 GHz dual core
Memory: 16GB internal, expandable up to 32GB via microSD
Camera (rear/front): 2MP/0.3MP
Battery: 7000 mAh

Simmtronics Xpad 1010
The device was the cheapest that we received among 10-inch tablets and we wouldn't be surprised if this is the cheapest tab in that form factor available in the country. The device sports hardware nearly identical to the Funbook Pro, though the latter has a better screen. Also the software runs better on the Funbook, while on this device we could detect jitters even as the device was playing the start-up animation. The company claims it is able to keep prices down by manufacturing the devices in India. This is a good device to buy for your children, but won't really be your best companion.

Price: Rs 8,499
Screen:10-inch 1024x600 multi-touch capacitive
OS: Android 4.0
RAM: 1GB
Processor: 1.2 GHz single core
Memory: 8GB internal, expandable up to 32GB via microSD
Camera (rear/front): NA/0.3MP
Battery: 5600 mAh

Zync Quad 9.7
If there's any tab worth its salt we can call loaded, at least in the hardware department, this is it. Besides the top-notch specifications, Zync has improved a lot on the look and feel of the product. The sober device will feel at home both in boardrooms and living spaces. The device packs in a 5MP rear shooter and photos taken outdoors are great. As for the front 2MP camera, this is a great one for video calling. The screen is the tab's best feature and somehow games seemed a whole lot of fun thanks to that. With casual gaming and heavy internet usage, the battery should last more than a day. The device weighs in a tad above half-a-kg and doesn't feature Bluetooth .

Price: Rs 13,990
Screen: 9.7-inch 2048x1536 10-point touch Retina Display
OS: Android 4.1
RAM: 2GB
Processor: 1.5 GHz quad core
Memory: 16GB internal, expandable up to 32GB via microSD
Camera (rear/front): 5MP/2MP
Battery: 8000 mAh

Micromax Funbook Pro
The brand is known for offering a lot at reasonable prices. But looking at the competition, it seems Micromax could have given better hardware. The fit and finish of the device seems a major improvement over the original Funbook and the multimedia playback is also good, as is playing files off a USB drive. But the touch experience is iffy; the odd placement of buttons don't help matters. The device boasts a plethora of connectivity options. GPS and Bluetooth have been given a miss

Price: Rs 10,499
Screen: 10-inch 1024x600 multi-touch capacitive
OS: Android 4.0
RAM: 1GB
Processor: 1.2 GHz single core
Memory: 8GB internal, expandable up to 32GB via microSD
Camera (rear/front): NA/VGA
Battery: 5600 mAh

Karbonn Smart Tab 10 Cosmic
The device looks smart in black and feels solid. But the surface is a fingerprint magnet and sometimes the OS feels jittery. The device plays many multimedia formats out of the box. It comes bundled with a lot of apps but do get yourself some external memory as the device has a measly 1.5 GB on board. But the device is very good for casual gaming and the bundled Angry Birds Seasons game is a whole lot of fun. As is the bundled TurboFly 3D game. It is only when you're gaming do you realise that the device, thanks to its heft, is likely to leave you with painful wrists after intense gaming sessions. If you're ready to handle the heft, game on!

Price: Rs 10,490
Screen: 9.7-inch 1280x800 10-point touch IPS
OS: Android 4.1.1
RAM: 1GB
Processor: 1.5 GHz dual core
Memory: 1.5GB internal, expandable up to 32GB via microSD
Camera (rear/front): 2MP/VGA
Battery: 6000 mAh


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