Wednesday, 25 September 2013

SYNAPSE CIRCUIT REVIEWS: ACER ICONIA A1-810 & STM BLAZER D7 SLEEVE

The STM Blazer D7 Sleeve featuring a zipless pocket at the back that can comfortably hold A5 papers. I found it handy to carry my flyers! 

A great fit: Iconia A1 and Blazer D7.
 

The Acer Iconia A1-810 and STM Blazer D7 Sleeve is a great combo!

Mmmmm... Provamel dairy free chocolate dessert is so delicious! 
SYNAPSE CIRCUIT REVIEWS:
ACER ICONIA A1-810
PRICE, £160 (CHECK ONLINE) & STM BLAZER D7 SLEEVE, £16
#Acer #IconiaA1-810

Good late evening, Synapse Circuit Readers! How are you? I hope that all is well with you and yours! Have you got your tablet yet? Well, I have promised myself that this year will be the year when I get mine. I have had the opportunity to play around with the Acer Iconia A1-810 and here’s what I think...

AS PREDICTED

Yes, as predicted the Android tablet has overtaken the iPad primarily because, like the handset, there are so many models to choose from that fits just about every budget and user. The iPad mini is a big mistake in that it has cannibalized the sales of the 10” iPad! Because of Apple’s determination to take on the 7” they were blind to realize how ill thought out the iPad mini was and is. Here’s why the iPad mini derailed Apple’s own iPad and gave rise to the Android tablet.

1. iPad users got a little fed up with the feeling of having last year’s tech when a new model is released so the mini version became more desirable as it costs less. And in doing so...

2. ...users realized that the retina screen was mainly hype. Don’t get me wrong, having a quality screen makes a difference but not that much otherwise Apple would have added retina to the mini. iPad enthusiasts were able to continue to use the apps they’ve become accustomed to.

3. The price is out of sync with a majority of Android tablets. As a result many consumers opt for an Android tablets either for themselves or for their children.

There you go; 3 reasons why the iPad mini was a bad idea. Just like the iPhone 5C, the iPad mini has not only cheapened the brand but has revealed that Apple is losing the battle against Android despite their in denial cool front that they present.

Now, let’s take a look at this offering from Acer...

...ACER ICONIA A1-810

Spec:-

7.9”
Resolution 1024 x 768 pixels.
IPS technology.
Multi-touch screen.
Quad-core 1.2GHz processor.
1 GB RAM.
16 GB internal storage.

General features:-
Built-in speaker.
Webcam.
Wireless enabled.
Bluetooth - enabling you to easily and wirelessly connect with other Bluetooth enabled devices.
3.5mm stereo headphone jack.
Microphone.
Mini HDMI.
0.3MP front and 5MP rear cameras.
Expandable up to 32GB.

Additional information:-
Up to 7 hours battery life (depending on usage).
1.1cm thin.
Size H20.8, W14.5cm.
Weight 410g.

Oh, I should also mention that there is a 3G version of this tablet for around £199, the A1-811! Very good!

As you can see the above specifications are quite good for a tablet at this price; you’re getting a quad-core processor! In addition there’s a main 5MP camera and front-facing camera for video calling. Other pluses are the mini HDMI and microCD slot (up to 32GB).

The 7.9” display has a 4:3 ratio instead of the customary 16:9 wide displays of other Android tablets such as the Google Nexus 7; while it is not the sharpest of tablet screens I was quite impressed by the quality. I was able to read documents, interact with Facebook quite easily without eye strain.

DESIGN & FORM
To look at the Iconia A1 you’d be forgiven for thinking that you’re looking at the iPad mini; the design is very similar albeit with no physical home button! Although the body is plastic the Iconia is very well constructed with a pearl while back which proved to be very resistant to fingerprints. Many budget Android tablets look and feel cheap but this is not the case here.

The design is quality and the tablet is easy to hold in one hand. It’s very light too! I would have liked a cover for the microSD card as it is easy for someone with malicious intent to remove it.

EVERYDAY USE
I was pleasantly surprised by the responsiveness of this unassuming tablet, many cheap Android tablets have been sluggish hence why I have been waiting for the quality to improve. There again, this was pre “Project Butter” that came with Jelly Bean (Android 4.2 and 4.3).

By placing 5 fingers on the screen the tablet wakes up! Apps are quick to display once launched. As you may have gathered I am a heavy Facebook, G Plus and Twitter user, the Iconia A1 handled these apps very well. I used my Galaxy S4 as a Wi-Fi spot and I was delighted with the set-up but I would opt for the 3G version of this tablet because there are many good to great SIM only deals from various networks to be had in the UK.

Very fortunately I got sent the marvellous Blazer D7 tablet sleeve from STM and it was a pleasure to throw the strap around my shoulders on my travels. What can I say about the Blazer D7 tablet sleeve? Okay... ...there’s a 10” version for larger tablets. The D7 is very well padded and gives a great deal of protection to the tablet. As you can see from the pictures it has a zipped pocket at the front and an open pocket at the back to store stuff! I love STM bags in general as they exude style and quality and the Blazer D7 is no exception. Now that the Iconia A1 has been sent back I feel desperate to fill the void (in every respect) with another tablet! Will it be the Iconia A1? We’ll see... In any event I recommend the STM Blazer D7 to shield your valuable tablet!

VERDICT
I judge a product not only by the usage, etc but if I miss it when it is gone. I miss the Acer Iconia A1-810! The Iconia A1 was simply a pleasure to use and couple with the Blazer D7 sleeve it was so very handy to take on the road with me.

The Iconia A1 is very responsive, surfing the web was a great experience, social networking apps functioned very fluidly and I felt it was an all-round tablet for everyday use. Naturally, the array of productivity apps can have you replace the laptop for many tasks such as the equivalent to Microsoft Office. To be honest with you I tend to use my PC for the productivity side of things. I tend to use my tablet as a social networking and multimedia device. The Acer Iconia A1-810 certainly fits the bill.

If you are interested you ought to keep a watchful eye on online and offline prices!

SCORE OUT OF 5
3.8 / 5

BITING THE APPLE
The Acer Iconia A1-810 is yet another thing that Apple can’t do – a great budget tablet with a true budget price tag! Check this out...

iPad mini 16 GB Wi-Fi, £269 vs. Iconia A1 16 GB, plus 32 GB microSD expansion, Wi-Fi, £160.

iPad mini 16 GB Wi-Fi & 3G, £369 vs. Iconia A1 16 GB, plus 32 GB microSD expansion, Wi-Fi & 3G, £199.

Game over, Apple!

I hope you enjoyed this review. Stay tuned for more reviews to come.

Watch this space!

Take good care!


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