Acer Iconia A500 10-Inch Tablet Review
Acer Iconia A500 Strengths
- The Acer Iconia is well built and stylish in design.
- Runs Android 3.0 Honeycomb – the first version of the Android operating system that is optimised for tablets.
- Same hardware spec as Motorola Xoom but lower price – apart from at this stage it only offers Wi-Fi connectivity rather than 3G/4G connectivity – more on that below.
- Dual-Core processor has plenty of power to run Android and give a speedy web browsing experience, handle 3D games, high-definition web video in the Flash format and complex apps. It also handles Blue-ray-quality high-definition video and you can use the HDMI port to hook the Acer Iconia to a high-definition TV and play what’s on your tablet on the big screen in high-definition. The strong processor also allows you to run more than one app simultaneously.
- 5-megapixel rear-facing camera for taking high-definition video and stills.
- 2-megapixel front-facing camera for video chat.
- 32GB memory for storing files which should be pretty substantial for the average user.
- SD memory card slot allows you to add more memory with a memory card to store additional files. Many digital cameras also use SD cards to store photos so you can take the card out of your camera and slot it into the Acer Iconia to directly load photos on to it.
- USB2.0 port means you have the facility to add peripheral devices such as a keyboard or mouse. You can also use it to get files on and off the Iconia via a memory stick.
- 10.1-inch multi-touch screen is of the capacitive-type so responsive to swipes and prods. It’s a high-resolution screen with 1280 by 800 pixels so images and videos are sharp.
- The range of sensors on the Acer Iconia mean it provides a similar gaming experience to the best gaming consoles. You can control the games on the tablet by twisting and turning it so it’s capable of a great 3D gaming experience.
- Acer Iconia comes pre-loaded with apps covering eBooks, digital magazines, music and video.
- GPS capabilities mean it can handle mapping apps along the lines of SatNav too.
- Strong battery life of up to 8 hours continuous high-definition video playback.
- Low price point given high quality hardware.
Acer Iconia A500 Weaknesses
- Weighs slightly more than the Motorola Xoom at 1.7lbs but same thickness
- The Wi-Fi-only Iconia is the only model available at the moment so if you’re out of range of a Wi-Fi hotspot then you can’t attach to a cellular network via a 3G SIM card – in comparison the Motorola offers the super-fast 4G connectivity.
- As with all Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) tablets, the operating system is still fairly buggy. This will improve as Google release updates to the Android operating system but for the time being you still have to deal with occasional lags and what feels like an unfinished operating system. This manifests itself in quirks such as videos and images being mixed up in the “Gallery” app or ports that are unresponsive so you have to try a couple of times before it registers your SD card. It’s designed to allow a user to configure absolutely everything and this means it gives too much choice that users can find overwhelming. It still looks great, is relatively intuitive and works in the vast majority of occasions, it’s just not as finished as the iOS operating system on an iPad.
Tablet Reviews – Acer Iconia A500
The Acer Iconia is an exciting tablet PC as it brings a very high-spec’d slate with the latest build of the Android operating system, at an affordable price. The processor is powerful, you get high-spec cameras and a high-resolution responsive touchscreen. Android still needs some finishing touches and it lacks 3G/4G connectivity, but you could always use a USB dongle or MiFi device to get around this. The Acer Iconia can be compared with the ASUS Eee Pad Transformer or the Motorola Xoom Review – it’s one of the new range of Android Honeycomb tablets that has the potential to really give the iPad a run for its money.
Image Source: Acer