Review round-up: The Dell Venue 8 7000 – the World’s thinnest tablet?

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Did Dell make crappy laptops? Some loved them, love hated them. But it now seems our experiences of Dell’s products can be put to one side, with the arrival of a statement-making 8-inch Android tablet – The Dell Venue 8 7000, proudly marketed as “the world’s thinnest tablet”.

So it’s definitely got our attention, but what’s the word on the street about the Venue 8 7000?

Wired, we have to admit, aren’t overly impressed. Citing the 8 7000’s new Intel processor, stylish features, unusual accessories, and a three-camera array, assets which are supposed to “blow you away”, the only aspect of the tablet that ‘does it’ for Wired is its beautiful design – sleek and slim, which at an incredible 6mm, could possibly be thinner than the iPhone 6. Despite its waif measurements and weighing just half a pound, the tablet still feels sturdy, pines Wired.

Innovative Intel Processor

Running the latest, cutting-edge Intel processor, the Venue has theoretically the perfect processor for a PC-style setup in a tablet form, writes Wired. However, the important word here is theoretically. Whilst the battery is impressively powerful and PC-like, little things like a game defaulting to inferior graphics and the multitasking menu stutters opening, are of concern to the Wired reviewer.

So mixed feelings about the Venue 8 7000 for Wired, but does the Dell tablet fare better with The Verge?

Super thin but “surprisingly solid” writes The Verge, but if only “better than the rest” counted for more!

Not a great start to the review and even less so when we learn that there’s only really two reasons why anyone should part with their money for the Venue 8 7000 – its design and its camera array.

So what about this elusive three-camera array?

Flip the Venue 8 7000 over and you’ll see three camera sensors, note the Verge. The sensors work together to form a depth-sensoring array. The first is an 8-megapixel camera which take the images, while the other two 720p cameras measure distance and determine depth information. This enables the user to get creative with photography by doing tricks such a blurring the background or isolating the subject in colour and making the background black and white. The camera even acts as a digital tape measure, informing the user of the measurements of the items in the frame.

Sounds impressive but, disappointingly, according to the Verge, the Venue 8 7000’s ‘special’ camera is reason not to buy this device. Why? Its standard 8-megapixel camera isn’t great, nor is trying to hold the device to take the photos!

Computer World seems a lot more upbeat about the Dell Venue 8 7000, referring to it as a “distinctive and premium Android tablet.”

This “distinctively stylish” tablet has some “unusually compelling” qualities, writes Computer World.

One such quality is the tablet’s impressive speakers which produce crystal clear sound. The 8 7000 is “consistently snappy” has “respectable stamina”, useful feature enhancements and clean and intuitive UI. On the downside, Computer World is critical of the tablet’s limited on-board storage

So what’s the overall verdict? Well the Dell Venue 8 7000 has certainly got the thumbs up for its super thin, sleek yet sturdy design but what seems to be a consistent let down is its camera, which, ironically, is the one component Dell probably worked the hardest on.

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And the price? The Dell Venue 8 7000 starts at £326, which is hardly a bank breaking price tag.

Alcatel OneTouch PIXI 7 – how good can a £70 tablet be?

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In recent weeks we’ve seen major players including Tesco and Vodafone stepping up their efforts in the budget tablet market – anybody would think it was getting close to some major seasonal gift buying event.

Now French manufacturer Alcatel is getting in on the act, bringing its OneTouch PIXI 7 tablet – first unveiled at Mobile World Congress back in February – to the UK. It’s a Wi-Fi only device with a budget price of £69.99, which places it above the sort of obscure far eastern brands you can pick up online for under 40 quid, but below better known names. It’s £10 less than the original Tesco Hudl for example.

The question is, at this price point what sort of compromises does it involve? At 9.9mm thick and weighing only 285 grammes it’s suitably pixie like. Inside is a 1.2 GHz triple-core CPU running Android KitKat, 512MB of memory and 4GB of internal storage that can be upped to 32GB with a microSD card.

Unusual for a cheap tablet is an infra-red port which lets you use it as a universal remote for your TV. You can stream content with Miracast too. Where the cost cutting really shows though is in the 960×540 screen resolution and in front and rear cameras both with a meagre 0.3 pixel resolution.

As Trusted Reviews says, “The specs are assuredly underwhelming, but that’s no surprise considering the price point.”

Cnet points out that the PIXI’s design is reflected in the price,

“To look at, there’s no question that it’s a budget device. Its rounded plastic back is very plain, with none of the elegance you’d see on more expensive devices. Still, if you’re expecting bleeding-edge design for 70 quid, more fool you. It’s all plastic and comes in ‘bluish black’ — oddly unspecific, but at least Alcatel didn’t make up some awful name like ‘Midnight Emperor’ or ‘Ocean Shadow’.”

The presence of two cameras impresses Phone Arena, though their spec didn’t.

“Usually, affordable Android tablets omit cameras, so it’s to our amazement that this one is outfitted with not one, but TWO cameras. Don’t hold your breath, though, seeing that they’re measly sized 0.3-megapixel ones – front and back! They’re not there to snap the most detailed shots, but instead, they’re simply tacked on to give us that option of snapping something if nothing else better is present.”

The Gadget Show likes the fact that it runs a relatively recent version of Android,

“Although there’s no sign of the latest and greatest Android 5.0 Lollipop onboard, the fact it runs KitKat is respectable enough (we’ve seen plenty of budget slates and phones running Android that are a couple of iterations out of date)…”

Overall there’s no doubt that the PIXI 7 is a budget device with a slightly silly name. But if you just want to update your social media while you watch TV on something with a bigger screen than your phone, it’ll do the job without stretching your finances. The PIXI is available now from Three stores.

Nokia returns with N1 Android tablet

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Nokia is back and is back in style! Being a product that marks the former phone giant’s return to consumer electronics, naturally the announcement that Nokia is releasing an Android tablet is causing quite a stir. Sites as diverse as the Android Police and the BBC, the Phone Arena and Forbes, quickly gave Nokia’s announcement some deserved attention.

So should we be excited about the style, workings and capabilities of the N1 Android Tablet? Or is the hype merely bubbling because it’s the first product Nokia has released since it sold its smartphone business to Microsoft and is likely to be a disappointment?

Forbes, fairy impartially we have to admit, details the N1’s spec with little commentary or opinion. This 7.9-inch tablet has a Gorilla Glass 3 covered with IPS panel running at 2048 x 1536 pixels. The CPU is an Intel Z3580 which has 2 GB of RAM, 32 GB of internal storage and runs at 2.3 GHz.

The camera is an eight-megapixel rear camera and a five-megapixel forward facing camera, perfect, of course, for taking ‘selfies’. As Forbes writes, it will be interesting to see if Nokia has “retained its legendary image capability.”

The BBC spoke of how Nokia’s “surprise launch” pits the company against Microsoft, which concluded its takeover of Nokia’s previous mobile devices in April this year.

The BBC also points out how Nokia says it will not be making the device itself, but has instead licensed its design, software and brand to a third-party.

So what about the N1’s design?

Uncanny resemblance of the iPad Mini is one comment that is woven through a significant proportion of the preview reviews.

Digital Versus talks of the iPad Mini resemblance, stating how, with a screen that even uses the same 4:3 ratio, the designers must have taken some “serious inspiration from the iPad Mini.”

“So much so, in fact, that it’ll be difficult for the Nokia to plead ignorance.”

Admitting that Nokia, doesn’t “do things by half”, Digital Versus is quick to point out that its tablet is designed around the very latest version of Android, 5.0 Lollipop.

The 5.0 Lollipop is, as Android proudly asserts, the “largest and most ambitious release for Android yet!”

Asides the Android 5.0 Lollipop, the N1 is overlaid with the Nokia Z Launcher interface, a feature almost every report of the N1 is keen to mention.

As Wired mentions, Nokia describes its Z Launcher as “predictive”, as it enables users to quickly scribble a letter or two to retrieve content on the tablet quickly and efficiently. Eventually the Z Launcher will apparently learn which apps are in use and will predict what users are requiring based on the time of day and the user’s location – could be a tad frustrating we fear if the Launcher gets it wrong!

Of its design, Wired remarks that the colourful Lumias which Nokia were once celebrated for are gone, and it in place stands a single piece of aluminium with slightly rounded corners that look suspiciously like a device we’ve seen before that sports an Apple logo!

All in all there is a wave of excitement circulating the press about Nokia’s return to the consumer market – a return that is definitely ambitious.

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The N1 looks set to retail at $250 and should be released in the first quarter of 2015.

Tesco Hudl2 – best budget tablet on the market?

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If industry figures are to be believed the tablet market is facing a bit of a slump, with reasons varying from a gimmick that’s outlived its sell-by date to a victim of the “phablet” revolution. If tightening the purse-strings is also a factor then budget tablets like the Hudl should be in their healthiest position yet, so it’s not at all surprising to see Tesco launch the successor.

The Hudl 2 retains the original’s low-cost appeal by arriving at a wallet-friendly £129 (just £10 more than the original’s initial price), and this comes with a number of improvements including a larger 8.3” full HD (1920×1200) display, an upgraded Atom quad-core 1.83GHz processor that Tesco claims is three times faster than the original, double the RAM at 2GB and 16GB of expandable storage. It runs Android Kitkat 4.4.2 and comes bundled with a parental control app that it’s pushing as a bit of a USP – seven user profiles are available tailored to age and suitability that parents can have up and running in minutes.

It’s out already, so we’ve got a handful of reviews and first impressions to help you decide if this tablet deserves a place in the home.

TechRadar’s a big fan. It describes the Hudl2 as a “stylish, desirable, and cheap full-featured Android tablet that will satisfy the whole family”, awarding it a mightily impressive 4.5/5. Claiming that it outshines virtually everything in this price bracket, highlights include the display, which is “rich and vibrant, text is sharp and easy to read, and you can happily watch movies, game, or read on it for hours.”  It’s also impressed by the balance, slim line design and soft touch coating for added grip, and stereo speakers that “really enhance movie watching and gaming”. Unfortunately the battery life, which is quoted at 8 hours, seems to be a bit of a letdown – its 90 minute battery test video at full brightness reduced a full charge to 63%, which left TechRadar questioning its suitability when taken outside the home.

PC Advisor is similarly gushing, awarding it the same score and calling it “one of the best budget tablets you can buy”. It also points out that with Tesco’s ClubCard Boost, every £5 of vouchers is worth £10 towards the tablet, so you can actually get it for as little of £65 worth of vouchers. Now that’s a bargain.

It’s impressed by the general performance overall, calling it “nippy and smooth the vast majority of the time and copes with web browsing and gaming very well.” It’s also nice to hear that Tesco hasn’t flooded the Hudl2 with proprietary apps and has left the OS pretty much alone, though does subtly encourage you to try to opt for Tesco’s services with its own simplified app market. You don’t have to use this of course, and in fairness it complements the parental controls nicely by providing a more accessible way for beginners to get started. On the downside there aren’t a lot of good things to say about the upgraded 5MP camera (though it has strangely reduced the front-facer to 1.2MP), which without an LED flash doesn’t offer great performances and can take an age to focus.

We’ll round things off with CNet who awards it 4/5 (which still qualifies as being rated “Excellent”) and echoes many of the positives outlined above.  It goes into a little more detail on the software front, outlining Tesco’s Blinkbox service which lets you download films, music and books (though not very cheaply) and a range of software that is able to:

“teach you everything you need to know about using it, from how to use the navigation buttons, how and where to download apps, how to use apps to socialise and how to use privacy and security settings.”

Along with a range of colour cases, parental controls and detailed information about the sort of things you might need to safeguard your kids from, it certainly seems as though Tesco is marketing this squarely as a tablet “for all the family”.

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At this price and with these sorts of reviews though, we can see it being very popular full stop. It’s ideal for fence-sitters who haven’t yet decided whether they want one and occasional users who can’t justify the cost of an iPad Air or Galaxy Tab S – surely two relatively untapped markets. And with that Clubcard Boost thrown in we might actually have to dig around to see if we have any old unused vouchers as well.

The Hudl2 is available now at £129 in the UK.

Galaxy Tab S: What the critics say

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Samsung Electronics has released their new Galaxy Tab S, Samsung’s thinnest and lightest tablet to date. The Tab S comes in two form factors, 10.5-inch and 8.4-inch. Both models come complete with a WQXGA (2560×1600, 16:10) Super AMOLED display which, the company claims, delivers more than 90% of Adobe RGB colour coverage and comes with a 100,000:1 contrast ratio. The company’s Adaptive Display technology will automatically adjust the device’s gamma, saturation, and sharpness based on the application as well as the colour temperature depending on the viewing environment and the lighting.

Both models have a sleek 6.6mm profile and weigh in at only 465g (10.5-inch) and 294g (8.4-inch). They will be available with a variety of connectivity options: Wi-Fi, or Wi-Fi and LTE, available in 16/32GB + MicroSD (up to 128GB). You can also choose between Titanium Bronze or Dazzling White. The smaller model incorporates a 4,900mAh battery, with the 10.5inch packing 7,900mAh. The company claim that when used in Ultra-Power Saving Mode, the Galaxy Tab S lets you “enjoy hours of entertainment without having to worry about recharging”.

Samsung devices are well known for coming packed with a variety of software, some of which is genuinely useful, some of which just a bit too quirky for the average user. The Galaxy Tab S is made for entertainment and comes with a variety of related apps. “Kick” is a new football app that provides in-depth and visually compelling sports data in real-time as matches get played. Samsung’s magazine service, “Papergarden” debuts on the Galaxy Tab S. An optimised viewing environment for digital interactive magazines, you will be able to view a wide range of popular magazines in vivid and true-to-life colour. There is also Galaxy Gifts which is where Samsung has teamed up with more than 30 mobile content and service providers to bring you extra content such as free memberships to Marvel and a free e-book per month.

So far, so good – but lets take a look at what some top industry critics thought of the Galaxy Tab S.

First up is The Guardian who asks whether the Samsung Galaxy Tab S review: a rival for the iPad?. The reviewer is particularly impressed with the new tablet’s display, going as far as to state that it’s the best I’ve ever seen on a tablet” and that it’s “bright enough to read even in direct sunlight”. He was also positive about the battery life, stating that:

I found both Tab S models lasted a good day (about 15 hours) on a single charge under constant usage (constant push email, a few hours’ browsing, perhaps an hour of video) without activating any of the power-saving modes. Even with a power-hungry application like the Assassin’s Creed 4 second-screen app connected to a PS4 the 10.5in tablet lasted a good eight hours.

In concluding, The Guardian’s view was that the “Tab S is Samsung’s best tablet yet by miles. Samsung has definitely given the iPad Air and Mini a solid run for their money: these are arguably the best Android tablets to date, with the best screen ever on a tablet.” They also awarded the device 5 out of 5 stars.

Here’s a quick infographic highlighting some of the features of the Tab S:

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Over at Trusted Reviews they were equally positive, awarding the Tab S 9/10 and giving it “Recommended” status. In particular they liked the “sharp, bright screen” as well as the fact it was “very thin, light and portable” and came with a “good battery life”. There overall verdict was that:

In every way that matters, this is a great tablet. The fingerprint reader is naff and some of Samsung’s software features miss the mark, but the screen is great it’s the perfect size for toting around with you everywhere.

The folks at TechnoBuffalo proclaimed the two varieties of the Tab S to be “the best Samsung tablets we’ve ever seen“:

Not only does it possess a great design and cool features, but it also comes equipped with one hell of a screen—among the best, if not the best, we’ve ever laid eyes on.

Awarding the devices 9/10 the reviewer rounded-up by stating that:

Samsung has never really excelled in the tablet market, but the company has finally hit a sweet spot with the Tab S

The Tab S devices will be selected markets from July 2014.

Microsoft Surface Pro 3: Review round-up

 

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Microsoft’s Surface series is leading the line for Windows-based tablets, and with the latest iteration show its desire to keep things competitive in an ever-improving market. The Surface Pro 3 comes with a number of improvements to do just this, and thankfully they’re not just restricted to barely noticeable performance upgrades.

Perhaps the most important is the larger screen – there’s a 12.1 inch display here, which is a significant upgrade on the 10.6 inch Surface Pro 2. Importantly this creates a clear gap between the Surface and other non-windows tablets, underlining Microsoft’s ambitions to make it a true laptop replacement. The aspect ratio has also changed, being 3:2 rather than 16:9, which may or may not appeal depending on its intended use.

With a bigger display you need better resolution, and Microsoft pushes past the 1080p barrier with a 2,160 x 1,440 display at around 214ppi – just about enough to ensure that there’s no drop in sharpness due to the increased size. The Surface Pro 3 is also lighter than the Pro 2, and with a slightly thinner bezel around the screen makes for a more immersive user experience.

Elsewhere speakers have been improved and are allegedly 45% louder, Microsoft claims 20% better battery life which should push nine hours, and yes there should be a performance boost, albeit a small one, thanks to an Intel Core i5-4200U chip (the top-end model gets an upgrade to Core i7).

So an impressive list of upgrades then, but how does it fare when you slap it all together? We did the rounds to find out.

Anandtech provides a typically detailed technical analysis of some of new features, with a focus on the display and performance. Though it admits there’s a lot more work to do before it draws any firm conclusions, there are mixed results from the early tests. The display varies from “Max brightness drops a bit compared to Surface Pro 2, likely due to the Pro 3 having 50% more pixels to light” and “Grayscale accuracy is the biggest issue with the new display, green levels are just way too high” to “Full saturation color reproduction is excellent”, so a bit of a mixed bag. Performance improvements seem significant though, as it reported “seeing a 3 – 20% increase in performance over the Surface Pro 2.”

TechRadar’s hands-on is more focused on usability, and enjoys the new smarter cover, which “made for a much more comfortable typing experience” and “deeper travel and punchier rebound in each key, making for an experience quite close to that of a laptop”. The only problem here is that it’ll cost you an extra £76 ish. The Pro 3 also works very well with a stylus, or Surface Pen, which feels more natural in the hand and combined with the LCD screen being brought closer to the glass makes “writing feels more natural – plain and simple.” It concludes by admitting that this is still quite a pricey device, and questions the concept of a laptop-replacement tablet in general, stating “Price and barely optional accessories aside, I’m already bullish on what this hybrid device is capable of. And I’ve been skeptical bordering on critical of the category since it popped up a few years back.”

Docking station
Docking station

There’s a fairly detailed review over at CNet, who decides that while the Pro 3 is somewhat stuck in the middle of the tablet/laptop space, “it’s more successful as a tablet than a laptop replacement. “ This is largely because of design shortcomings, such as some ergonomic difficulties when balancing it on a lap and various niggles with the touchpad. It’s also a fair bit behind performance-wise, as a trial of Bioshock Infinite showed. “We gave BioShock Infinite a spin at high settings and our standard 1,920×1,080-pixel resolution, and got single-digit frame rates. Running at the native resolution on low settings, the game still chugged unacceptably.”

It does offer praise for the optional keyboard upgrade, which is beginning to sound less like an option, and the digital pen. The battery life impressed when pitting it against rivals such as the Yoga 2 Pro and HP X2 hybrid: “The Surface Pro 3 did, however, best most of the competition in battery life, even if only by a small margin”, and comments on the slim design and display were generally favourable.

We’ll sum up with MacWorld’s conclusion in a comparison between the Surface Pro 3 and iPad Air. Although there are similarities in design and size, the consensus here seems to be that the Pro 3 will score more points with professionals who don’t want to carry around a laptop and a tablet (Microsoft says that 96% of iPad owners also have a laptop) where the Air will be better for consumers who really just want a tablet. This seems to be the overriding point, and surely one that Microsoft is aware of with these new improvements. Moving away from the tablet space towards the laptop with a larger screen and strong focus on a usable stylus and keyboard could be a risky move, and only time will tell whether there’s enough interest here to make it a success.

Lenovo Tablet 10 HD+ review round-up

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Lenovo did something few other companies have done in the tablet market when it released the Yoga Tablet 10 – it dared to try something a little bit different. This “difference” was largely down to an oversized (albeit stylish) base which housed a kick-stand and importantly allowed it to make a significant improvement on typical battery life.

Despite receiving rather mixed reviews, Lenovo was not deterred and is back with the Yoga Tablet 10 HD+, a device that promises a premium experience and comes with a range of upgrades on its predecessor.

Boasting a 10.1” full HD (1920×1200) display, Qualcomm SnapDragon quad-core 400 processor and an 8MP rear camera, it comes with 16GB and 32GB storage options (plus a microSD slot), Bluetooth 4.0 and a 3G option for selected countries. Importantly, the extended battery life is carried through here, with an estimated 18 hours of viewing pleasure, and running Android 4.3 (with an update to KitKat allegedly on the way) it appears as though, on paper at least, the HD+ could well be worth a look.

Though we’re a bit short of full reviews at the time of writing, a bunch of the usual contenders have already gone hands-on with the 10 HD+, so let’s see how it fares.

TechRadar praises the display on the new Yoga, though does note that “the resolution still lags behind some other larger-screened tablets such as the iPad Air”. It also appears to be very good value for money, undercutting many comparable competitors, but the 8MP camera sadly lacks an autofocus and flash, and didn’t appear to be overly impressive.

The back of the new Yoga 10
The back of the new Yoga 10

PC Advisor is pleased that Lenovo has tackled its biggest issues with the predecessor, namely the screen resolution and overall performance. It comments that “We found the old model of the Yoga Tablet 10 to be a little slow at times, but our first hands-on experience with the Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ suggests that it’s a fair bit speedier and smoother to use”. The display also receives praise here, and though it doesn’t quite stand up to the iPad Air, it does “match the density of the new Sony Xperia Z2 tablet’s display”.

Over at The Inquirer the impressive front-facing Dolby speakers get a mention for their clear-sounding audio, though the purported 18-hours battery life may be typically overstated, as in its tests “the device lasted for around 11 hours of uninterrupted use on full brightness while connected to WiFi”, which is still nothing to sniff at.

TrustedReviews was rather critical of the original Yoga, stating that “a long battery life and low price point did not offset the awfully grainy screen and under-par processor”, and goes on to state that during its hands-on test, these issues do seem to have been resolved. The general feel of the tablet also gets a mention, with the oversized base allowing for an additional benefit of it being comfortable to hold, though “the stand was a little short, leading to some tip-over issues if the screen was pressed too firmly”. It goes on to praise Lenovo for clearly listening to criticisms of the first tablet and directly addressing these issues, before concluding by saying that “the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10 HD Plus could be a real stand-up Android tablet”.

So there you have it. After a relatively mediocre showing from its first effort, the Yoga appears to have made significant improvements in all the right areas, making it a genuinely appealing mid-range device that could represent a real alternative to more established rivals.

The Lenovo Yoga 10 HD+ starts at £299, and will be available from April via major retailers. For more information visit www.lenovo.com

 

Review round up: Nokia Lumia 2520 tablet

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With Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia all but signed and sealed, it’ll be interesting to see what the merger of these two tech giants can bring to the ever-changing handheld market. Whether the Nokia Lumia 2520, the Finnish company’s first (and quite possibly last) tablet, gets swept under the carpet in favour of the Surface or embraced as part of a more diverse portfolio really depends on how precious Microsoft is about its own baby, and, of course, whether Nokia can show that it has something worth looking at.

With a 10.1” full HD display, quad-core, 4G connectivity, Windows RT 8.1, an impressive 11-hour battery life and 6.7MP/2MB rear/front cameras, along with a choice of four colours, Nokia is going all out with a high-end entry from the off, so let’s see how it fares.

We’ll kick off with The Independent, who lays its stall out early by claiming that “This, Microsoft, is how to make a tablet”. Lauding the aesthetics of the 2520 and calling it “…a triumph of design and beauty, making Microsoft’s own Surface look clumsy and heavy”, Nokia’s tablet is praised for its simplicity, a neat selection of Nokia’s own built-in apps and fast and responsive touchscreen, though what could turn out to be a predictable disadvantage is the limited (albeit growing) selection of additional apps available.

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T3 is similarly complimentary about the design, claiming that it represents a mix of the elegance of the iPad Air, the bargain price of the Tesco Hudl and the PC-replacement nature of the Surface 2. It also praises the display, stating that “It looks great, not least because alongside excellent resolution of 218ppi it has Nokia’s Clear Black Display technology which makes the screen more easily readable in bright light” and “Movies look super sharp, with a rich colour palette and wide viewing angles.” Both overall performance and the impressive camera get a mention, and T3 concludes by saying that “This is one of the best tablets yet built, thanks to Nokia’s swish and tactile design that fits the hand splendidly”.

Pocket Lint likes the performance, battery life, display and viewing angles, and again praises the design over Microsoft’s Surface, though does note that the Surface has a kick-stand, more USB ports and a slightly better price. These are minor points, however, as it goes on to say that “…the Lumia 2520 is probably the best thing on the market for people looking to buy a tablet that doubles as a laptop.”

Phone Arena is slightly less dismissive of Microsoft’s own brand, claiming that the choice between the two “is a tough one to call.” The slightly more expensive 2520 appears to win out overall though, with the extra cost “…justified in the way that it’s sporting one attractive design, produces better results with its camera, and that it’s preloaded with various Nokia-branded apps that deepens the experience out of the box.”

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Finally, TIME magazine says that the Lumia 2520 is “the tablet Nokia was born to build” and offers similar praise for the design and overall performance. Holding it back, however, is that “…it doesn’t trump the iPad and can’t compete with its abundance of apps”, while musing over its future in the light of the Microsoft acquisition. Sadly, with Nokia’s previous head of design Marko Artishaari declining to join Microsoft, it may be the case that the 2520 is seen as too much of a threat, with no immediate means to replicate its aesthetic merits. But as what could be a final hurrah for a company that has been so influential in the mobile phone marketplace, it’s nice to see that the Lumia 2520 ticks a lot of boxes.

The Nokia Lumia 2520 is priced at £399 with 32GB of storage, a SIM card slot for 4G and is exclusive to John Lewis.