If you’ve already been using Windows 7, and would like to get the same feel and use in your tablet PC, the Acer Iconia will be the only realistic option available right now. Apart from running a Windows OS, are there other reasons to make this the tablet to spend your money on?
Get the Acer Iconia Tab W500 from Amazon.com
Key Specs For The Acer Iconia
- Cost $505-$600
- Released 2011
- Runs Windows 7
- 7.48 x 10.83 x 0.63 inches in size
- Weighs 2.14 lb. / 0.97 kg
- 10.1 inch screen
- 1024 x 768 resolution
- 32GB storage space
- AMD C-50 1 GHz processor
- Wi-Fi & Bluetooth connectivity
- 1.3 MP cameras
- 6 hour battery life
Good Points About the Acer Iconia…
Screen: The Acer Iconia feels and looks extremely professional, with striking and vivid colours. While the screen itself isn’t HD (high definition), HD videos play really well. One thing you must get used to is making your finger touches very precise – this tablet is much less reactive than the iPad, which allows you to be quite sloppy.
Sound: In tablet PC terms, the Iconia speakers are pretty good. With that being said, no tablet on the market has great speakers. You’ll want a good quality pair of earphones if you plan on using your tablet for listening to music or playing videos.
Ease of Use: The tablet is responsive and the feel is quite intuitive. Many users will be happy to finally find a tablet Pc that runs the familiar Windows OS. If you use Windows on your home PC then you will find it very easy to get used to the Iconia.
Keyboard Attachment: A major plus point of the Acer Iconia is the add-on keyboard which basically turns the tablet into a laptop. This can be attached to the base of the tablet and functions just like a small but regular keyboard. This is a real bonus for anyone who will be using their tablet to send a lot of emails or other types of written documents, as typing on the tablet screen can be tiring.
SD Slot: There is a full-sized SD slot which is a big plus. A lot of tablets that include a memory card slot only accept micro SDs. With a full SD slot you can easily transfer, for example, pictures from a camera memory card. If you do want to use a micro-SD card in it, you can easily purchase an adapter.
USB 2.0: The Acer Iconia gives you a generous two USB slots, ideal for connecting accessories – especially now the USB has becomeso ubiquitous in modern life.
And the bad points…
On Screen Keyboard: No on-screen keyboard will ever be as comfortable or responsive as a physical model, but the Acer’s in particular has had a lot of complaints. Yes, you can add on the keyboard, but that’s going to cost extra!
Storage Space: 32GB might sound like a good amount of space for a tablet, but in reality with Windows OS will take up over half of this amount, leaving you just 19GB for your own files! This is far more space than needed by Apple or Android OSs, and really lets this tablet down.
OK, 19GB will be enough for quite a lot of apps and a fair amount of music, but if you’re into watching movies, you will only be able to fit a few on there at a time. Equally if you have a big music library you are going to find this very limited. On the plus side, the USB slots make it easy to transfer your movie or music to USB stick and then plug it in, or you could use the expanded memory slot.
Cameras: Camera quality isn’t a strong selling point on this model, giving only 1.3 megapixels. It does have both a front and rear-facing camera. Don’t even consider this tablet pc if photography is your main aim.
Battery Life: Battery drains quite quickly on the Iconia and it simply can’t compete with the top tablets on this. It’s advertised at 6 hours, but many users have reported getting only 4 hours with moderate usage. This means you will need to carry a wall or car charger with you, or risk your tablet dying in the middle of your business presentation!
Size/ Weight: There are certainly slimmer and lighter products on the market than the Acer Iconia, which can feel like a bit of a house brick in comparison to the iPad 2. The add-on keyboard will be a big help here as holding the tablet in one hand is not sustainable for long.
The main selling point of this tablet pc is that it’s a pretty high-spec Windows 7 tablet pc – in fact, it’s the only one on the market. If you specifically need a Windows tablet then there are very few other options. Sadly, there are some real drawbacks to the Acer Iconia. If you are looking for something a bit more lightweight, portable and user-friendly, then you should also consider the Samsung Galaxy or the iPad.