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back to article Reseller touts cheap-as-chips 7in Android tablet

Shocked by the high price of Samsung's Galaxy Tab? Rather spend considerably less than that? How about 85 quid? Yes, that's what bargain basement seller Morgan Computers - Somerset-based Bentham Ltd snapped up the name in November 2009 after the original went titsup - wants for the "7 inch Google Android tablet with touchscreen …

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Anonymous Coward

Android Version

Any idea what version of android this will be running? Looked on the site and couldn't find anything.....

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Screen

I'll assume resistive, rather than capacitive then?

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Not necessarily a bad thing

You can write on a resistive screen with a stylus. If you were using the device to take notes, it might prove to be vastly more useful than capacitive. A hybrid screen would offer the best of both worlds of course.

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Gradually opening up a new market segment

It also only has 128 MB RAM, and perhaps unsurprisingly Android 1.7. So I guess you're not doing anything that requires much power on it. But as an ultra-simple portable web browser - think digital photo frame with net connectivity - it could be really useful, at that price.

And however cut-down, it's really refreshing that firms are bringing out Android tablets that aren't even trying to be iPad competitors, but are doing something quite different - and they're at a much more sensible price. More work needed for that breakthrough, eeePC equivalent for the cheap-but-great tablet market, but it's definitely edging that way.

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Paris Hilton

OS?

Erm the website it states OS: Google android 1.7.4

Really? I thought there was either 1.5, 1.6. 2.0, 2.1 or 2.2, so where did 1.7 come into it? Strikes me as one of those dodgy imports. I may be tempted to get one though, as a eBook reader.

Paris, cos I'm not blonde but probably should be :)

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FAIL

Product Image - fail

I also noticed that the picture seems to show a '3G' icon and signal strength bar, which clearly this model would not have? I guess the image is for 'illustration only' a?

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Re: Product Image - fail

The two clocks tell different times.

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Needs more

Why buy a tablet that's overshadowed by the most basic 'droid phones?

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Badgers

Android 1.7.4?

If that very dodgy-looking version number is even slightly accurate, that's about donut and a half. (The screen shot certainly shows donut.) It also doesn't say whether the screen is capacitative or resistive, which means it's most likely resistive.

I suspect that the only thing this tablet has going for it is the price. OTOH, it is a very good price... that's 85 quid *including* VAT, mind.

I wonder if it's upgradable to froyo?

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Coat

Not cheap enough?

How about a £35 one :)

http://www.engadget.com/2010/09/08/indias-35-android-tablet-reportedly-on-track-for-january-launc/

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Impressive for 85 quid!

Actually 84.95 or 72.30 without VAT. Assuming a 20% reseller commission, what's left is 60 quid to pay for all the parts, manufacturing, shipping, engineering,...

True, components are a bit aged (almost nobody uses 400MHz ARM for new products; 16Gb Flash chips must be quite cheap too), but there's still the Wifi chip (without 802.11n but nevertheless), 7" LCD (no OLED for this price), touchscreen + controller, 1Gb DRAM, battery, camera, speaker, etc.

Would like to see the innards of this baby. For this price, must be a generic reference design from VIA with relatively simple & large PCB (in contrast to that fruit company's high density designs with multiple silicon dies in single package). If that's the case, expect more of the same design under different branding / slightly different case design - similar to consumer SSDs, where at least 5 companies are using exactly the same PCB (=reference design from Indilinx).

In fact, those designs are similarly specced; might even share the innards with this product (except for the touchscreen instead of keyboard):

http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/279019650/7_inch_laptop_VIA_8505_with.html

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Umm..... the Apad? iRobot?

They're a bit late to the party, aren't they? eBay's been littered with 7" Android tablets for a while now, and with a damn sight better specs than that as well - 600MHz plus a 600MHz DSP? I think they're probably down towards £90 now?

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Pint

Morgan setting market balance - prices should moderate

Whilst the features of this Morgan pad might be modest, it will fill a void - particularly in the Christmas season - which will allow parents to satisfy a child's dream at reasonable cost - so they can evaluate the recipients use of the pad before moving on to a more advanced version whose prices should have moderated by then.

They will provide today's children with their grandparents experience of reading a book under the bedsheets using a torch/flash-light.

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A81E seems to be the current benchmark

the Wistech A81E (the one with 3 actual buttons on the front) seems to be the model to beat at the moment

http://www.merimobiles.com/Witstech_A81E_Android_2_2_Flash_10_1Market_Free_Ca_p/meri0306.htm

with Android 2.2, BT, GPS... in fact, a pretty good hardware list apart from (strangely) no accelerometer it may clock in a few quid more than the Morgan (I though they made Bug Eyed Sprites not computers) but offers a bit more value

http://slatedroid.com/ have good list of alternatives and write-ups... might be interesting to see an El Reg take on some of the more popular devices from there before the UK market is flooded with last generation fail...

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Nooo.....

Austin-Healey made Sprites - bugeye and otherwise.

Morgan, suprisingly, make Morgans....

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Joke

Suspiciously cheap and fuzzy on specs.

What are the odds that when the box is opened, it contains only potatoes?

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This is where Android Slates will win

Ultimately, tablets at the Apple/Samsung price range are going to be for wealthy fanbois/wannabees only, doing nothing a £200 netbook does. I have £125 7" slate from an Amazon seller. It browses the web, lets me read books, runs the few apps I would want inside the home, and does fit nicely in a pocket. Only 1.6 so no Exchange support but can live with IMAP. These things are real, work, and may not be sexy but do what people actually want.

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FAIL

zenpad?

this appears to be a zenpad: http://enso-now.com/zenpad1 which was a slightly different version of some other mid. the pic on their site is the same as on the zenpad site though.

which never shipped afaik. google for zenpad and read the drama.

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!Froyo

I believe Android 2.x requires 256MB of RAM so these devices are unlikely to be able to support Froyo.

Still waiting for a decent review of the ViewPad 100

Bob

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So so...

Pretty obvious its bankrupt stock and thus it'll not be upgradeable.

Oh sure a few techies will try to hack it for a few months. But when they move on to the next gadget the mere-human users of us will be left with a slate that can't do very much I fear.

.

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Android version what?

Love how they are posting the firmware version as the Android version because they just don't know any better. Looks like a re-bodied Eken or APad... In other words Android 1.5 and DOWN to the usual standard.

I don't care if it is £85, it's still rubbish. :-)

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