Dell Streak 7 Android Tablet Review

Article Index

Summary & Conclusion

Streak 7 Performance Summary:  The Dell Streak 7 delivers excellent performance. In our benchmarks, the Streak 7 was able to take the top spot in most tests. NVIDIA's Tegra 2 chip continues to prove itself very competent in both general processing and graphics intensive applications and games. Unfortunately, many benchmarks cannot currently take advantage of the Tegra 2's second core and the same can be said about most Android apps. However, we'll see better performance in the future as multi-core support becomes the norm on Android.



The Dell Streak 7 is a competent tablet, especially with respect to performance and hardware. The NVIDIA Tegra 2 SoC lends the Streak 7 some serious computing power for both work and play. The Streak 7 packs front and rear cameras which are well calibrated and take good pictures. It also has a good design with great build quality. Unfortunately the Streak 7's less than impressive screen takes it down a few notches. Both the screen's mediocre 800x480 resolution and its below average viewing angles makes using what is an otherwise fantastic device occasionally lackluster.

It's really unfortunate that Dell decided to use a lower-end LCD panel for their new 7-inch tablet. The Streak 7 should be very competitive with the Samsung Galaxy Tab and, given a Honeycomb update, could also compete well with upcoming tablets like the Motorola Xoom. Unfortunately, the screen's 800x480 resolution and below average viewing angles are going to limit the tablet amongst power users who are looking at such details.  Perhaps the average mainstream consumer might not care so much but, these are differences that can be noticed in a side-by-side comparison.

Battery life isn't in the same league as the iPad or Galaxy Tab either. We were able to get a solid 6 hours from a single charge through sporadic use where the Streak 7 was connected to Wi-Fi and screen brightness was set to 1/3. The Streak 7 spent about as much time in standby as it did in a combination of light and heavy usage scenarios ranging from web browsing to viewing video and running benchmarks. While our usage pattern is likely to reflect average real-world usage, and 6 hours is respectable, other tablets like the Galaxy Tab can manage to stay running for much longer. This is a result of the Streak 7's relatively small 2,780 mAh battery, compared to the Tab's beefier 4000 mAh unit.

Other than the lackluster screen and mediocre battery life, the Dell Streak 7 is an excellent tablet. The 1GHz dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 makes it one of the most powerful tablets around and it should have a long shelf life, especially if Dell does a good job of supporting the device with Android OS updates, starting with Honeycomb. Overall, the Dell Streak 7 has the potential to be a relevant tablet for quite some time and assuming it receives an update to Honeycomb, will remain competitive well through the summer.

  
  • Excellent performance with NVIDIA Tegra 2
  • Great build quality
  • Good 5MP camera
  • Front-facing 1.3MP cam
  • Thin, light and sleek
  • Reasonably priced

 

  • Somewhat limited LCD viewing angles
  • Low screen resolution
  • Stage UI a little sluggish
  • Mediocre battery life
  • Dell 30-pin proprietary docking port

 


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