Product Type: Motorola Tablet PCs / eBook Readers
Newest Review: ... screens to make them easy to find. Considering I've had this for over a year now, I think it's hats off to Motorola for producing s... more
Motorola have jumped onto the Tablet band wagon with some grace
Motorola XOOM With Wi-Fi
Member Name: blissman70
Motorola XOOM With Wi-Fi
Advantages: Easy to use, crystal clear screen, nice speaker sounds, really mobile and a great all rounder
Disadvantages: A bit towards the high end price tag but . . . . .
So, as I said, everyone has heard of a PC, be it one that sits on your desk, appropriately named a 'Desk Top', or one that sits on your lap, again appropriately named a 'Lap Top'.
But over time technology has made a few additions to the PC world, (Personal Computer world, not the other ones), in the shape of more mobile devices that can get you connected to the world wide web, browsing the internet on the move, with devices such as notebooks which are more portable than a lunch box, or even better, smart phones, with some the size of a cigarette packet, almost, but all more portable than a notebook
But most impressive, in my view, is the technological advance which is in the shape of a form of PC which is not only easily portable, like a smart phone, but also offers a viewing and internet browsing experience which is as good as you would get using a top of the range Laptop.
These devices I am amazed by do have a strange sort of name, being the same as something you'd take if you weren't feeling to good. No their not called 'Alka- Seltzer', nor are they called 'A double Brandy on the rocks', the devices I am talking about are actually called 'Tablets' (You'd take tablets if you weren't feeling to well?), which, as the name suggests, are slim devices which are easy to swallow, (but don't try taking one with a glass of water).
Anyway, quite recently I had the extreme pleasure of actually using a certain 'tablet' device due to a new contract at work, which meant that I could give this particular device a good run for its money whilst also completing what I realised was one of the easiest work projects that I had been given, (but I'm not here to talk about work, I'm in work to talk about this device).
The device I have had the pleasure of using is in fact made from a well known mobile phone company whose phones I have used before and found them to be quite good phones, offering some rather nice features. So I thought that this tablet would be as good as the phones themselves.
The company I am talking about is called Motorola and the tablet they have brough out is called the Xoom, (that's right X oom, I did spell it right).
So, after a few weeks 'hammering' this Motorola Xoom, for the sake of work honest, I can safely say that Motorola have taken steps into the Tablet market with some style and grace, offering a tablet device which is well up in the league table of tablet devices from the more well known tablet devices such as the popular Ipad and the not so popular Samsung Galaxy.
Firstly though, let's get into the technical bits and what this tablet has to offer...
* It has a 10.1 inch TFT LCD screen, 1280 x 800 pixels, which is surrounded by a nice sized black frame. The actual screen gives a crystal clear image which is a pleasure to look at
The entire unit is very portable, being 249mm x 168mm x 13mm and weighing in at a lightweight 700 grams.
* Inside it has a 1GHz dual-core processor, which really helps those who like to play games whilst they're meant to be doing there homework, so for normal use, like browsing and simply looking through files/photos, it speeds along like a boy racer in his mummies Golf Gti.
* It connects to the internet via Wi-Fi and 3G, although I only tend to use it on Wi-Fi.
* The Wi-Fi is your standard 802.11 and should connect to most routers in an instant, it took me a few minutes to connect to mine and has never dropped connection at all.
* Apart from the Wi-Fi it also has built in Bluetooth which lets me transfer certain files over the radio waves.
* It has two web cams, a 2MP on the front and a 5MP one on the rear, with the rear one having an LED flash for when you want to take pictures in low light.
* As for the camera itself, which has auto focus and digital zoom, has 720p HD video capture capabilities which when played back on the tablet is so clear you'll think you're looking through a window that's just been cleaned by a professional window cleaner, (not like my window cleaner who has a special skill of making my windows look dirtier that when he started).
* The operating system is Android 3.0 (honeycomb), which is pretty good indeed, but if you're not happy with it there are ways of changing the OS into you're particular choice. But as I said, the OS installed is adequate for me and allows me to do everything that I want to with no trouble at all.
* It has a 32GB internal memory
* The battery claims to give a cracking 10 hours plus of excessive use, and it really does stick to it's claim as I have 'hammered' the battery and actually managed to get more 12 hours out of it, before having to re-charge. This was going online, browsing, e-mailing etc, then doing a lot of bits of work on it, both personal and for the boss. Although I haven't tried it on playing games but I'm guessing that the battery power will not last as long when doing so.
* It also claims that, with a full charge, you can get over 3 days of MP3 playback and over 10 hours of video playback, now that's a lot of music and videos in my book. Also, it has a standby capability of around 14 days, but this is if it's just sat in a cupboards not being used of course.
* It has a 2.0 USB port which gives a good transfer speed and there's also a HDMI output and a 3.5mm earphone jack.
* The connection ports are all in one place, these being the HDMI, the USB and the power connection.
* The keyboard is virtual and can be used either portrait or landscape.
* The speakers are situated on the back of the device which cause them to sound a little muffled if you place it down on something, especially a bed or carpet, but the speakers themselves are clear and do not distort when the volume is turned up, or there's that option of using your favourite earphones in the 3.5mm jack if the speakers don't make you smile.
* If you've used a smartphone on android then you'll be used to the pinch to zoom action and the touch screen, which is sensitive but not too sensitive, if you know what I mean?
* Security features including screen lock, pattern lock and PIN lock
* Other features which are on the system are...
* A calendar
* Alarm clock
* Google street map.
** Along the bottom of the tablet, just below the screen, there are three 'hard keys' which are...
* Return to previous page
* Recent Application used.
** On the back, or front, which ever way you look at it, but on the opposite side to the screen, there is a row at the top which contain
* 5 MP Camera
* On/off switch
** WHAT I THINK...
I love it, simple as, as I find it to be a tool that I can, and will, use on a daily basis, be it browsing the latest sports news, writing up a file for work or simply looking through some pictures I have taken. In fact, I can honestly see my faithful laptop being made redundant for my day to day work schedule.
Starting it up was as simple as pressing a button, literally, once I'd fully charged it, which took about 2 hours, using the supplied charger. Then it was a matter of following the on screen instructions, such as selecting a language, connecting to the internet through the Wi-Fi router, or Wi-Fi 'hotspot', then registering the device through a google account. If, like me, you use your normal google account then this unit will sync with your account automatically, which saves a lot of hassle and even more time.
Then I simply played about with the settings, changing them so that the tablet runs just as I want it too. Such as connecting it to my router, via the wireless and network settings, and in here is where you can also fiddle about with your Bluetooth settings as well.
Then there's the option of securing the device using the location and security settings, which is one of the first things I did by adding a security code so that when booting up I am the only person that could gain access.
There's just so much to say about the settings but if you spend time on it then you can get them just as you want them, although it does take time believe me, in fact, I'm still going about adding and taking things away, changing how the home screens looks and how the unit responds.
Once I got online, after connecting to your Wi-Fi router, I started to enjoy the capabilities of the tablet as there is a built in browser. This built in browser is good, but I opted to download, install and use a different browser, Opera mini in fact, mainly because I use it on my smartphone and am used to how it works, finding it to be a little diamond for speed, plus, with it's many functions, I can set it for my own personal way of surfing.
But either way, once connected to the internet browsing around is fast and just as easy as using a laptop or a desk top, only a lot less weight on your lap. The screen may be only 10.1 inches but the way that the web pages open up makes them so clear to read without having to squint.
As for 'multi-tasking' so to speak, I was amazed by how many 'tabs' I could open and actually use without any sign of sluggishness. In fact I had quite a few open at one point, expecting the tablet to slow right down but it didn't falter one bit, so I'm guessing that the 1GB of RAM is well up for the job of keeping it going without me pulling my hair out.
Although I haven't tried running multiple games and apps at the same time yet, but give me time.
Taking a picture, or shooting a video, with it was a little strange at first due to the shape of it, but the touch screen makes it so easy to do and I soon forgot I was holding what looked like a book out on front of me, looking like I was about to preach to the nation. When taking the picture, using the front camera, I was presented with some options on the touch screen, such as whether I wanted the flash on, whether I wanted to change the settings, what sort of light it was, and more. These all appeared on the right of the screen with the image the lens was pointing at clearly showing next to it. Once happy with the settings it was just a matter of touching the little centre 'shutter' tab on the controls and a click later I was given a crystal clear image of my kids and my wife, (should keep the burglars out when I put it over the front door).
The screen in screen facility is brilliant, allowing me to see who I'm talking to whilst seeing what I look like at the same time, remarkable, (technology not my face), this is done by using the front camera, your Wi-Fi connection and a program like Google Talk, or similar, but as Google talk is installed this is what I used.
As for using the touch screen itself, if you're familiar with smartphones then the screen works in exactly the same way, but for those that are not familiar with them. The screen responds to the smallest of touches, with a touch on an icon opening up the application that you put your finger on, but if you keep your finger on the icon you can move the said icon around the screen, putting it where ever you want to, allowing you to customise the screen to your own taste. If you touch and hold without moving the icon, a little 'bin' logo appears near the bottom, which, if pressed at the same time as holding the icon, will delete the said icon from your screen, but this doesn't delete the application, only the icon from he screen.
It may all sound a little complicated for first time users but once done the one time you will realise how simple it is to do again and again.
Customising the home screens are, as I said, a personal choice, so it's not worth me going into detail about how to do it, but I will say that my home screens have many widgets, short cuts and silly icons all scattered around my lovely wallpaper, making it a little easier on the eye that the boring screens that initially come with it.
Then there's the actual applications themselves, which should be all in the 'App' section, and once again, downloading them is your own choice, although there are several already installed which can not be deleted, such as maps, navigation, books, Android market, browser, e-mail, setting and more, although some of them are as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike.
But, if like me, the more you use them the more you get used to what each on can do and what they all offer, getting to know your favourite ones and getting used to avoiding the ones that annoy you.
All the apps can be found online, either on the Android Market, which is the safest place, or by simply searching around online to see if there are some out there you may like, although I prefer to stick with the market itself as there are hundreds of apps for this particular tablet, with more being added every day.
So what about stuff like typing words onto the tablet? I hear you ask.
This is cleverly done by it having a built in 'touch screen' keyboard, which pops up at the touch of a screen really. This keyboard is a good size, covering about a half of the screen, with the individual keys being just the right size.
This keyboard did take me a few moments to get used to, in fact, when I say moments I really mean a few hours, getting used to the fact that the gaps between the keys don't really exist, there being no touchable corners on each key like there is on a normal keyboard. But once I'd mastered this touch type business I was flying away, well, I was using more than one finger to poke the letters onto the screen anyway.
There's a lot more I can say about this tablet but it would just be padding really as it is up to each individual persons choice to set it up exactly how you want it. But I will say that this is without doubt a tablet that is keeping certain other tablet makers on their toes.
As for the price, well this is the only downside as the price of this particular modal is selling for between £350 and a massive £500, which may seem a hefty price but for what you get the price may just well be justified.
I know I didn't have to pay for the one I am using but I have to ask myself would I have paid that amount of money for this tablet? Yes, especially if I got it for the lower end price, but even for £500 I'd have to seriously think about parting with my cash now that I have used it.
Summary: This Tablet may not get rid of headaches but it can certainly keep you connected to the world
|Ease of use:|
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