A Non-Techy Nexus 10 Review
I was lucky enough to get a Nexus 10 Android tablet for Christmas so I thought I’d write a short post about it, in case anyone out there is thinking about spending some of their precious Christmas dosh on one.
I like technology but I’m not a massive geek, so this post isn’t going to be full of specs. If you are after that kinds of review, you’d better hit the back button.
If you are like me. all you really need to know about the Nexus 10 tablet is that it’s the same sort of size as an iPad, just a little longer and a little narrower. It only comes in black and you have the choice of a 16GB or a 32GB model. The 16GB model retails at around £319 and you’ll pay around £389 for the 32GB model; both cheaper than the iPad equivalents.
I liked the feeling of the Nexus 10 right out of the box. It has a plastic backing to it, so it feels warm when you hold it and the bottom of the screen is narrower than the top. This is a tablet that encourages you to hold it in landscape but it still rotates automatically when you hold it in portrait.
I switched the tablet on out of the box. The on button is on the top left, next to the volume rocker. It sprang to life within seconds and presented me with a welcome screen from which I could select my chosen language and set up my WiFi connection. There were some other boxes to check concerning backing up and location, but these can be altered at any time in ‘settings’, so don’t panic too much if you aren’t sure of your preferences.
The keyboard is instantly responsive and you can elect to hear a click or feel a buzz as you type a letter, or get no feedback at all; whichever you prefer. I like a buzz but find a touch click annoying, so turned the ‘touch sounds’ off. You can also do a sort of swiping, where you drag your finger from one letter to the next rather than just touching the appropriate button. It feels like quite an odd thing to do but seems quite accurate the few times I’ve tried.
Then I was presented with the tablet’s home page. The Nexus 10′s screen is actually higher-resolution than Apple’s new iPad’s much-trumpeted Retina display, or even a Full HD TV screen and it is amazing. The film ‘Ice Age 4′ comes preloaded on the Nexus 10 so we watched a bit of that. The other thing that stands out on the Nexus 10 tablet is the speakers. There are two long ones, with multiple outputs each side when you hold the tablet in landscape. This means that the sound coming from the device is never muffled, no matter how you hold it.
I can see I’m going to have no problem watching movies or TV programmes on my new toy.
The Nexus 10 is a little lighter than the iPad, even though the screen is made from tough, scratch-resistant Gorilla Glass. This is good news for this accident-prone household, although I’m going to make sure the kids have very few chances to get their grubby little mitts on my tablet.
However, if you did want a tablet for the family to share, the Nexus 10 would be a good choice as you can create up to eight different user profiles. Each user can set their own homepage, Wi-Fi preferences and groups of apps.
I have an Android phone so I’m familiar with the set up procedure and had no trouble using the menu bar at the bottom of the home screen. I have a GMail address which I was prompted to connect up and this also signed me into my YouTube and Google + accounts. And because I already had a Google Play account, all the Apps I’d ever downloaded onto my phone appeared, as if by magic, on my tablet.
I’ve only had the Nexus 10 for a couple of days and so far have found it easy to surf the web on. I have had no eye strain at all, due, I think to the screens high definition. I’ve posted on FB and Twitter on it. I’ve downloaded a couple of new games as I find it easier to play games on a larger screen than on my phone. I’ve changed the background a couple of times, and downloaded some music. I have got the WordPress App loaded up on it but find it easier to use a real keyboard so will probably continue to blog on my desktop for the foreseeable future. However, I have spotted some wireless keyboards that work with this tablet which might make blogging from the sofa a possibility. It also has a handy little notification light at the bottom front that flashes every time you get an email or message.
I’ve taken some photos with the 5 MP forward facing camera and frighted the bejesus out of myself by switching to the 1.9MP backward facing camera. They are okay but I’m a bit of a camera snob so I can’t imagine I’ll use this function a lot. I did, however, take quite a nice video of the Christmas pudding flaming up during lunch on the big day. And the Nexus 10 does have PhotoSphere which takes fun panoramic photos.
The Nexus 10 isn’t going to replace my desktop for serious writing sessions while the kids are at school, but it should free it up during the end of the day, when all I want to do is catch up on FB and check my emails but the kids need it for their homework.
I’ll update my thoughts on it after I’ve used it for a month or two but for now, all I can say is if you are after a good quality, fast WiFi-only tablet with good picture and sound quality and don’t want to buy from the iStable, then the Nexus 10 could very well be the right device for you.