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Gadget review: The Iconia W4 tablet

If you're looking for a Windows tablet within 30k, Acer’s Iconia W4 might be your best bet

After struggling to impress fans with the Iconia W3 in 2013, Acer seems to have learnt its lesson, and very well too. The PC and tablet maker has just-launched a Windows tablet, Iconia W4, a much-needed improvement over its predecessor. It beats a lot of competition with its pricing and performance.

What we liked

Performance and Hardware : The Iconia W4 comes with a decent quad core processor, the Intel Z3740 up to 1.8 GHz, a decent 2GB RAM, 64GB internal storage with support for another 64GB memory card. As far as real-time app performance goes, the W4 manages to beat most of its competitors including the Dell Venue Pro 8, which has nearly the same specs as the W4. Overall, the tablet works well with most of your browsing and medium gaming needs, except when it shut down automatically, which was just two occasions. The 4960 mAH battery gives a decent 8 to 9 hours of video playback, which is great for a Windows tablet.

Connectivity: It is 3G-enabled, which means you no longer have to carry a 3G dongle on the go to stay connected on your tablet. It also supports WiFi and Bluetooth, but what makes it more useful is the mini HDMI support, which
was missing in the Dell Venue 8 Pro.

Price: Its biggest advantage is its pricing when compared to other Windows tablets with similar specs. The 64GB 3G Iconia W4, which we tested, is 10k cheaper than the 64GB variant of Dell Venue Pro 8 with 3G connectivity.

Camera: The Iconia W4 gets a decent 2MP front and 5MP rear camera; probably not the best in its class, but it gets the job done.

What we didn't like
Handling and weight: The Iconia W4 come with a metal finish at the back, which is not as grippy as the soft, rubbery finish of the Dell Venue 8 Pro. Next, the Iconia W4 is also a bit bulkier and heavier for an 8-inch tablet. The Dell Venue 8Pro is lighter by 30 grams.

Accessories: We also didn’t like that the only accessory available with the tablet was just a battery charger and USB. It should at least have had a pair of headphones. Unlike the Dell Venue 8 Pro, the Iconia W4 doesn’t provide a digital pen, which could act as a deterrent for some buyers. While the tablet is already available in India, some of the much-needed accessories like the Bluetooth keyboard aren’t available in India as yet. Despite these hiccups, at '29,990, a 64GB Windows 8.1 tablet with 3G connectivity and mini HDMI support, makes for a hard-to-miss pick.
Available at All electronic stores.

Specifications

Size: 8-inch
Screen: 1280 x 800 LCD; 189 ppi density
Prpcessor: 1.8 Ghz Intel Atom Z3470 quad core
RAM: 2 GB RAM, 64 GB storage (expandable)
Camera: 2MP (front), 5MP (rear), GPS, Bluetooth, WiFi, 3G
Price: R29,999

Pros
>> Solid looking with metal finishing
>> Priced within budget for a 64GB, 3G-ready tablet
>> Support for mini HDMI
>> 8-9 hours of video playback.

Cons
>> Body isn’t well gripped, a tad heavy, and bulkier for an 8-inch tablet
>> No support for a digital pen
>> Accessories like Bluetooth keyboard not yet available in India

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