ViewSonic gTablet Review, Begging To Be Rooted

Article Index

Performance Summary and Conclusions

gTablet Performance Take-Aways:  The ViewSonic gTablet delivered a solid user experience, in terms of responsiveness and performance.  In our benchmarks, the device posted strong scores across all tests we threw at it.  It was the fastest tablet we've tested to date in general compute horsepower and also has a strong 3D engine by NVIDIA that is easily up to the task of ultra-mobile multimedia playback and gaming on the go.

The real major issue that we simply couldn't get around with the gTablet is its screen.  It's actually an odd sort of thing to have get in the way, coming from an LCD manufacturer like ViewSonic.  With all of their experience in display technologies, we would have expected the screen to be a strong point for the gTablet, but it's definitely not.  And the orientation issue with the viewing angle being better when the device is held upside down, is just plain odd.  We won't linger too long on this sticking point, however.  It's not a complete deal-breaker for the device and the gTablet's price point is definitely more palatable for the average consumer, when you consider 10-inch slates are commanding upward of $500 in some configurations.  The gTablet can be found online at places like Amazon for $399 and you might even find it a few bucks cheaper at a place like Sears or Office Depot. At that price, for a 10-inch slate with WiFi, lots of connectivity options, and capability for expansion, it's definitely worth consideration.

The big opportunity here for ViewSonic, comes in the area of support.  If ViewSonic can react quickly to the impending release of Google's Android Honeycomb OS, which will not only provide a full-fledged tablet optimized UI, but renewed access to the Android Marketplace, the gTablet could be an inexpensive alternative to many of the higher-end tablets on the market. Let's Kick Tap 'n Tap to the curb, just for good measure too.  And so we'll wait and see in the coming weeks if ViewSonic provides an over-the-air update with Honeycomb.  NVIDIA's Tegra 2 platform definitely supports it and hopefully ViewSonic will step up to the plate, or should we say, "slate."

Update 2/1/11:  ViewSonic has confirmed that they "plan to support the latest Android version on all our nVidia platforms….assuming of course that both nVidia and Google permits this."

  • Great performance with NVIDIA Tegra 2 chip
  • Thin, light and sleek
  • Reasonably priced
  • Lots of expansion ports
  • Regular firmware updates from ViewSonic
  • Great battery life
  • Poor LCD viewing angles
  • No Android Market
  • Tap 'n Tap UI gets in the way

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