Dell Venue 8 Pro and Venue 8 Do Windows and Android - HotHardware

Dell Venue 8 Pro and Venue 8 Do Windows and Android

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The Venue 8 is a mere 0.38 inches (9.75mm) thick, ever so slightly bigger than the 0.35-inch thick Venue 8 Pro. Neither tablet is as thin as, say, an iPad mini, but both devices are clearly very slim. They’re light, too: 0.82 and 0.87 pounds for the Venue 8 and 8 Pro, respectively. Holding either tablet in one hand is easy and so is keeping your grip, thanks to the almost-smooth finish on the back.


Dell Venue 8

When it comes to buttons and ports, the Venue 8 keeps things simple. It has a power button and headphone jack at the top, while the volume buttons are on its right side (by your left hand), near the top. The speaker is at the other end of the device. It’s a tried-and true setup: the speaker ends up closest to you whenever you use it in orientation mode. The display is reasonably bright and handled our taps and swipes without a problem. Multi-touch gestures also worked fine.






The Dell Venue 8. The micro-SD slot has a cover that snaps into place.

The Venue 8 Pro’s power and volume buttons are on its left side (by your right hand in portrait mode). Being a Windows tablet, it has a Start button too. It’s at the top of the device (in portrait mode), rather than near the bottom of the screen, where it is on most tablets. The placement has annoyed some users, but it didn’t strike us as a big deal: we used the physical Start button and the on-screen button (swipe inward from the side to see it) for weeks with equal comfort.


Dell also let us try out the Dell Folio and Dell Active Stylus, both of which are designed for the Venue 8 Pro. The Folio, which sells for $39.99, is a slick case that can prop up your tablet for easy viewing. The black exterior picks up fingerprints over time, but it’s easy to clean. It has openings for most ports and the back camera, but it completely blocks the micro SD port. We used the Stylus when the tablet was in Desktop mode, but found that we were usually more comfortable working without it.




Both Venues come in red or black colors. The red models look sharp in the images we’ve seen and they don’t cost any more than the black Venues, but we haven’t seen them up close, as we tested the standard black units.

As for software, the Dell Venue 8 runs Android 4.2.2, which is a recent - but not the most recent – version of Google’s mobile operating system. The tablet isn’t loaded down with many extra apps, but it does come with PocketCloud, an app that lets you connect remotely to your Windows or Mac desktop and access their contents.



The Dell Venue 8's Android apps on are on the left. The right image is from the Dell Venue 8 Pro, which runs Windows 8.1.

The Venue 8 Pro is also free of bloatware. Dell added some of its branded applications, which are small utilities that will either prove to be handy or at least stay out of your way. My Dell, for example, brings together tools for installing drivers, system backup, and troubleshooting.
 

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That's surprisingly affordable. Whoa

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Agreed... these are solid devices for the dollar and I'm willing to be the 8 Pro will come down a touch over time.

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Who would have figured that Windows 8 was a much more efficient OS than Android? The 15.5Wh battery in the Android tablet (using a 2.4W average processor) lasts half as much as the 18Wh battery in the Windows one (also 2.4W according to z3740 specs), making Windows 80% more efficient. Hurry-up-and-wait effect from the faster chip probably helped, but it still means that W8.1 is pretty impressive performance per watt wise.

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I recently dumped my old Nexus 7 2012 for a Venue 8 Pro. Having a Windows 8.1 tablet means there are quite a few apps that aren't available, but 100% working flash and MS Office preloaded completely makes up for it.

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Install bluestacks on it and you'll have all the android apps on top of the millions of applications (the big boy equivalent) that exist for Windows.

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This looks awesome since it runs full Windows 8. One CON that I see and have read elsewhere is that with 1 USB port you can't connect a dock or peripheral and charge the Venue at the same time.

I'm not trying to Spam and I just thought I would share in case others have run into this same issue.

I found this link - http://kck.st/1fIi06H for a device that simply connects between your charger and tablet. The device lets you charge (at full rate) and gives you an extra USB port to connect a dock, hub, or whatever peripheral you want. Like I said, I'm not affiliated with this project or trying to Spam but it sure sounds like a good solution for the Venue 8's port shortcomings.

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Full USB and Charging at the same time...

This looks awesome since it runs full Windows 8. One CON that I see and have read elsewhere is that you can't connect a dock or peripheral and charge the Venue at the same time.

I wasn't going to buy it because of the charging/docking issue but yesterday I found this link - http://kck.st/1fIi06H for a device that simply connects between your charger and tablet. The device lets you charge (at full rate) and gives you an extra USB port to connect a dock, hub, or whatever peripheral you want. I'm going to pre-order one. I just thought I would share in case others have run into this same issue.

+port plus port

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