Headlines

7 months ago

Large Android tablets are finally becoming fun to use

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Nexus Dell

Hardware manufacturers are finally taking large Android tablets seriously, just in time for the software to complete the picture.

Android tablets have a long and storied history of not being very good. Despite dozens of options available to consumers, the overall experience — by which I mean third-party software, battery life, and hardware quality — has struggled. The combination of race to the bottom pricing and lacking software made the 7-inch tablet significantly more popular, and as a result the larger tablet market slowed for a while.

This year, things are on a noticeable upswing for Android tablets. Several manufacturers have released promising options, software has improved noticeably, and there's a roadmap for the future that makes owning a larger tablet something that makes sense.

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7 months ago

Choosing between a Chromebook and a large Android tablet

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Nexus 9 Acer C720

Google now has two platforms for desktop-class computing, but which experience is up to the task of being a standalone laptop?

While it may be easy to look at Chromebooks and mock them for being "just a browser" or look at an Android tablet and call it "just a big phone," it turns out there's not a lot of truth behind the derision. We've entered an era where the browser is the platform for a lot of work and play, and apps come in all shapes and sizes. That's not to say there's no need for high-end computing machines, especially for folks who need that hardware for games and resource-intensive tasks, but it does mean there are lots of options out there now for web-focused and casual users.

It also means Google has a pair of platforms for you to choose from, and we took a look at why you might consider one over the other.

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7 months ago

Hands-on with the Nextbook Ares 8

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The Nextbook Ares 8 is a $78 tablet that runs Android 5.0, but at less than $100 is it even worth a look?

Nextbook, a company that makes affordable Android and Windows tablets, has some relatively new Android based tablets available, and we got to see what it was all about.

In the past, it was a general rule to avoid any cheap Android device, but over the past year things have started changing. We have seen more and more affordable Android devices that are worth checking out, and it appears as though that trend may be moving towards tablets as well.

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7 months ago

Amazon launches Lollipop-based Fire OS 5 Developer Preview

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Amazon is giving app makers an early look at the company's next operating system update with the Fire OS 5 Developer Preview.

Amazon will likely launch some new versions of its Fire HD tablets later this year, and it's already preparing for that day with the release of the Fire OS 5 Developer Preview.

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7 months ago

Samsung launches LTE-enabled Galaxy Tab A in India, Galaxy Tab E coming later this month

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Samsung controls a lion's share of the tablet market in India, and is looking to continue its strong showing with the launch of the Galaxy Tab A and Galaxy Tab E in the country.

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7 months ago

T-Mobile celebrates Father's Day with free LG G Pad F 8.0

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T-Mobile's latest promotion offers a free LG G Pad F 8.0 to customers, as long as they pay for a qualifying data plan.

For Father's Day, T-Mobile is giving away the LG G Pad F 8.0 to customers as long as they purchase a qualifying data plan for the tablet. That's right, for $0 down, and $0 a month on top of the data plan, you can get a brand new LG G Pad F 8.0 tablet.

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7 months ago

Dell's Venue 10 7000 Series keyboard is what every Android keyboard should be

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Dell Venue 10 7000 Series

Dell's tablet experience feels like a laptop experience, and it's something more companies should emulate immediately.

With few exceptions, mobile keyboards are terrible. The keys often are too close together with next to no travel, and when you do pay extra for a feature like backlit keys it's usually not a great experience. In a world where we are surrounded by folks trying to claim tablets can be productivity machines, the dearth of quality keyboards for those devices is a little confusing. Software is an important part of the productivity experience, but when your web browser soaks up most of the productivity apps in your average workflow, a quality keyboard is the difference between banging out half a paragraph on a cramped rubbery piece of junk in a coffee shop and actually getting work done.

Dell seems to be the only company that gets this right now, and to demonstrate this they built a tablet and keyboard that feels more like a laptop than most of the mid-range "ultraportables" you'll see in your local electronics store.

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7 months ago

Meet the Harrier Tab, EE's new 4G-enabled tablet

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The Harrier Tab is EE's latest piece of kit expanding the company's own brand product range. Available today, the new tablet comes packing Android 5.1 Lollipop, and 4G connectivity.

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7 months ago

In pictures: Nexus 9 versus Dell Venue 10 7000 Series

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Nexus 9 Dell 10

Google and Dell both want you to use their Android tablets for productivity and entertainment, but the approach is what sets them apart.

Android tablets with large screens are mostly though to be no-compromise consumption devices. These are the computers that replaced inexpensive netbooks as a buying option for a lot of folks, especially with the volume of streaming video apps and games in the Google Play Store today. Google released the Nexus 9 to act as a sort of blueprint for large format devices, showing how quality front facing speakers and a high resolution display can make all the difference in the world. You can also use the Nexus 9 as a productivity device by sliding the magnetic keyboard folio into place and typing away on the mini keyboard.

Dell has approached things a little differently. The keyboard for this tablet is the star of the show, offering a quality typing and navigation experience without needing to worry about another battery or toggling a Bluetooth connection. Should you decide to play a game or something, the keyboard detaches and you've got an entertainment device with decent front facing speakers.

Here's a quick look at these machines side by side.

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8 months ago

Dell Venue 10 7000 hands-on

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Dell Venue 10

Following on from the Venue 8, Dell's new 10-inch Android slate boasts high-end specs, depth-sensing cameras and a unique form factor.

One of the biggest Android tablet surprises of 2015 has been the Venue 8 7000 series, the super-thin tablet with a depth-sensing camera and a gorgeous display, which gets even better with Lollipop. Now the manufacturer's back with a second Android 5.0 slate, the 10.5-inch Venue 10 7000 series. Like its predecessor it eschews the traditional tablet form factor in favor of an unconventional handle/hinge design, while also running a high-end Intel processor with the chipmaker's RealSense 3D camera tech.

Sure, Dell's still terrible at naming most of its products, but we can't deny that the veteran PC maker is coming out with some interesting Android tablets this year. Head past the break for a closer look at Dell's latest 10-incher.

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8 months ago

Dell's ultra-thin Venue 8 7000 tablet heads to India for ₹34,999

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Unveiled earlier this year, Dell's Venue 8 7000 Series tablet — specifically the Venue 8 7480 — has made its way to India for ₹34,999 ($549), with availability commencing from July.

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8 months ago

More shots of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 appear online

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More photos of what are claimed to be of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 have surfaced online, matching those spotted as the device passed through certification.

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8 months ago

First look: Acer's crazy Predator 8 gaming tablet

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Acer Predator 8

Four speakers, a beastly Intel CPU and an otherworldly design make up one of the most unique Android tablets of Computex.

Gaming is a big deal for Acer. The Taiwanese firm's booth at Computex 2015 prominently displays its line of "Predator" gaming gear — including full-sized PC cases, monitors and other components. And now Acer's gaming focus extends into the mobile world, with the emergence of the Predator 8 tablet — a ferocious 8-inch tablet running Android and targeted at gamers, and coming to market in late 2015.

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8 months ago

Hands-on with ASUS' new ZenPad tablets

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ASUS ZenPad 8.0

ASUS' new tablet range includes three entry-level models and an intriguing Intel-powered high-ender.

This morning at its "Zensation" event in Taipei, ASUS unveiled a new line of 8-inch Android tablets under the ZenPad brand — the ZenPad 8.0 and ZenPad S 8.0. Then after that presentation, the company showed off a further two low-end ZenPad models — the ZenPad 7 and 10, at 7 and 10 inches respectively. While most of these devices won't appeal to spec-happy tablet buyers, the new flagship ZenPad S 8.0 delivers an impressive combination of hardware power in a slim, sleek form factor. And even the budget offerings have some unique accessories going for them. We'll take a closer look after the break.

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8 months ago

ASUS ZenPad 8.0 Z380C tablet lowers the specs, adds functional backs

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ZenPad 8.0

Being able to swap out the back of a device for a different color or maybe to add a little functionality isn't exactly a new phenomenon — phones have been doing it for years. But tablets never really got into that game. That changes today with the ASUS ZenPad 8.0 Z380C, unveiled at the Computex conference in Taiwan,

The 8-inch tablet sports an Atom X3 (SoFIA) quad-core processor and Mali 450MP4 GPU. The display is a rather unimpressive 1280x800 resolution (at a 16:10 aspect ratio), and you'll get either 1 or 2 gigabytes of RAM along with either 8 or 16 gigabytes of storage, depending on the model.

The real talking points, however, are the back covers. There's the Zen Case back covers, available in leather black, pearl white and aurora metallic. Or you can opt for the Zen Clutch folio. If the 4,000 mAh battery isn't enough for your use, you can snag the Power Case batter back that gives you up to 14 hours of total use, ASUS says. (That includes the internal batter.) There's an Audio Cover that adds six speakers and five hours of battery life, with 5.1 DTS-HD sound.

So while the specs might not wow you, there's definitely a lot here to take a look at.

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