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July 07, 2013

Gadget ON: ASUS Fonepad - 7-inch Tablet & 3G Phone Review

The ASUS Fonepad was recently released by ASUS last May and it's their latest Tablet offering, the Fonepad is tablet with Phone functions, 7-inch IPS Screen, and Sleek Metallic Finish.


ASUS announced its Fonepad at this year’s Mobile World Congress as a 7-inch tablet which can also be used to make phone calls due to its 3G voice and data capabilities, although we’d certainly question the sanity of anyone who would hold a 7-inch tablet up to their ear on a regular basis.: http://www.ubergizmo.com/2013/06/asus-fonepad-review/
ASUS announced its Fonepad at this year’s Mobile World Congress as a 7-inch tablet which can also be used to make phone calls due to its 3G voice and data capabilities, although we’d certainly question the sanity of anyone who would hold a 7-inch tablet up to their ear on a regular basis.: http://www.ubergizmo.com/2013/06/asus-fonepad-review/
ASUS announced its Fonepad at this year’s Mobile World Congress as a 7-inch tablet which can also be used to make phone calls due to its 3G voice and data capabilities, although we’d certainly question the sanity of anyone who would hold a 7-inch tablet up to their ear on a regular basis.: http://www.ubergizmo.com/2013/06/asus-fonepad-review/
ASUS announced its Fonepad at this year’s Mobile World Congress as a 7-inch tablet which can also be used to make phone calls due to its 3G voice and data capabilities, although we’d certainly question the sanity of anyone who would hold a 7-inch tablet up to their ear on a regular basis.: http://www.ubergizmo.com/2013/06/asus-fonepad-review/
ASUS announced its Fonepad at this year’s Mobile World Congress as a 7-inch tablet which can also be used to make phone calls due to its 3G voice and data capabilities, although we’d certainly question the sanity of anyone who would hold a 7-inch tablet up to their ear on a regular basis.: http://www.ubergizmo.com/2013/06/asus-fonepad-review/
ASUS Fonepad is not only a tablet but a full pledge phone with 3G data capabilities, here's an interesting question, are users now adopt in holding a 7-inch tablet up to their ear as main phone on a regular basis! We'll there are already Phablet that ranges from 5 up to 7-inch so I guess it will be the next standard size for Phablet.

Now let me share my experience with this new Phablet! let get started....

Lenovo A390 Key Features:
 
Full 3G phone, Micro SIM
Intel Atom Z2440 with hyper-threading technology
Android OS, v4.1 (Jelly Bean) 
7″ WXGA (1280×800) LED Backlit IPS Display at 217 ppi, with 178 degree viewing angle 
1.2MP front camera, 3MP rear camera with autofocus and 720p video recording 
3.15 MP, 2048x1536 pixels, autofocus (selected markets only)

16Wh Li-polymer 4270mAh Battery Capacity
Color to choose from: Titanium Gray and Champagne Gold 
v3.0 with A2DP Bluetooth
8GB variant with Intel Atom 1.2Ghz sells for Php 11,995.00 
32GB variant with Intel Atom 1.6Ghz sells for Php 14,995.00  - See more at: http://adobotech.blogspot.com/2013/05/asus-launches-7-inch-fonepad-in.html#sthash.UcvSBKki.dpuf
ASUS FonePad Key Features:
  • Full 3G phone, Micro SIM
  • 1.6 GHz Intel Atom Z2460 with hyper-threading technology Processor
  • PowerVR SGX540 GPU
  • 1 GB RAM / 32GB Memory
  • Android OS, v4.1.2 (Jelly Bean)
  • 7″ WXGA (1280×800) LED Backlit IPS Display at 217 ppi, 178 degree viewing angle
  • 1.2MP front camera, 3MP rear camera with autofocus and 720p video recording
  • 4270mAh Battery Capacity (16Wh Li-polymer)
  • Color Titanium Gray and Champagne Gold 
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi hotspot
  • Bluetooth 3.0 with A2DP
  • SRP: 32GB variant with Intel Atom 1.6Ghz sells for Php 14,995
So what in the box!
The ASUS FonePad package contains, the wall charger, micro USB cable (for sync & charging) and some printed user guide and warranty information.

>>READ: Budget Android Torque Driodz Force Smartphone

 

Metal Design and Build 

With it's beautiful back plate made from metal with metallic finish. FonePad build is solid and you can feel it on your hand that you are holding a premium design device. It's amazing on how they come up with this design and build with a price point that low.

There is a plastic cover at the top of the FonePad, once removed revelied the location of the microSD and micro-SIM slot resides. The cover can easly removed by simply putting some pressure and sliding it upwards.

Holding the FonePad is actually comfortable, the metal back cover does not feel slippery and the screen surface as well. Weighing at 340grams this Phablet is can sit on your palm without you getting tired holding it. It also looks slim due to the design of the body.

There are only two physical buttons on the FonePad, located at the left side one for the power button and the long one is for volume controls, the tactile feedback is quite good. The rest of the buttons for navigation are virtual through Jelly Bean Interface.

Located at the bottom part of the FonePad is where the micro-USB plug, 3.5mm jack for audio and the speaker. There is a small hole located near the headphone jack I'm assuming this is the microphone.

Display: IPS LCD touchscreen

The 7-inch touchscreen on FonePad is quite amazing, with a resolution of 1280×800 pixes with LED Backlit IPS Display at 217 ppi, the viewing angles are great. This is a perfect device for watching movies, looking at photos and definitely surfing the web. 

I loaded this with some of my current selection of TV series, and I was really amazed by the color representation on this device.

By the way can you guess what TV Series I'm currently watching?
 
There is also a preloaded apps in the FonePad, one of these is ASUS Splendid which allows the user to fine-tune the color Temperature or Enhancement.

For outdoor use with direct sunlight, nothing to worry it's definitely possible. You can still read your SMS, emails or simply browse the internet. There is a setting for the brightness, just make sure to choose "Outdoor Mode" this will allow you see better.

Android: 4.1.2 and Apps

This device have an Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean, it would have been great if ASUS opted to pre-load the Fonepad with Android 4.2 instead, because it can really used the new lock screen widgets, multi-user support and redesigned UI. Nevertheless this version is still the latest and and have a lot to offer in terms of functionality. For the update, well let's hope that ASUS will consider to give this update.

FonePad home screen have a lot of beautiful default background images, and with it's 7-nch screen there are plenty of space where to put Widgets and favorite Application and Games. With the modified UI, there are some useful tweaks that is worthy to look at, One of this is from the lock screen the Camera and Google app can be launched directly.

Another thing is from the notification bar, where Wi-Fi, GPS, Smart Battery and other functions can easily be switch on or off. Now there are two button besides the Setting button the first one is for the Wi-Fi setting shortcut and the other one is for Audio Wizard for setting the preferred Audio profiles. Adjusting the brightness or changing the brightness profile is also located here which is convenient if you want to instantly adjust it when your outdoor.

The one's that are native and stock form Android apps are Calendar, Gallery, Contacts, Dialer and messaging apps. For the Widgets, ASUS have loaded this device with some of the cool ones, like task manager, weather with clock and the battery widget.

  For the on-screen keyboard, the default settings is with clicking sound and vibration which is annoying but this can be easily turn-off in settings menu. I find it comfortable to type on the on-screen keyboard, the response is quite good without the lagged experience.


The Floating Apps is another useful FonePad productivity feature, this include a web browser, calculator, stopwatch, calendar, dictionary, email client and many more can be added from the sslection of widgets.

>>READ: Microsoft powered Windows Phone 8 smartphone - HTC 8S Review

 

Processor and Computing Power

Antutu Benchmark Scores
So the FonePad is one of the Tablet to be powered by Intel Atom Z2460 with hyper-threading technology Processor, and only have a single-core, this might not have Quad-core processing power, but the this is more than enough to get the performance needed to get a the UI experince smooth and other task to perform great.
If you're a gamer like me, just make sure to turn-off the live wallpapers so that you may not experience some frame drop while in the game specially those with high 3D graphics games.



Camera and Multimedia

Equipped with 3.2MP rear camera, it takes decent images during the daylight, the front 1.2MP camera is good enough for making video calls.

The Music Player that comes with FonePad is the Play Music app from Google which is a decent player if you ask me, and with Google Play All Access this makes a more universal audio player. 
One thing I noticed is the speaker has an average sound output, but this can be tweak by using the Audio wizard which have some presets, like music mode, movie,speech, gaming and recording mode.
There seems to be a default Video player, so I download the Free VLC player for the reason that it supports a lot of video format.  You'll enjoy watching on the Fonepad just like I did, since it can handle up to 1080p resolution. It's a great to have this with you specially long travel just  pre-load it a lot of Audio books and movies.

Phone Function and Battery Life

Since this is also a phone, it's also need to be tested, using this as a phone and putting on on the ear seems a bit uncomfortable maybe because it's just to big to be a phone. 
The call quality is a bit low standard, it seems the other person on the line can't seem to hear me well because I have to repeat some of the things I said a couple of times, but on my side I can hear and understand well what was said. I tried to repeat the call this time using a Jabra Bluetooth headset and it seems to work well for both party.

Battery life of the FonePad is around 9 hours on standard use, with it's 4270mAh battery capacity I say that's standard. But if you are using 3G data and watching Movies with high contrast expect the battery to drain faster. If you want to save some juice you can enable the Smart Saving feature what is does is, it turns off some or of the device radios if they are not being used.

Conclusion

With a price tag of Php 14,995, The ASUS Fonepad very reasonable price considering with it's build and the sexy the metal back cover design.  The form factor and size might be a turn-off for some specially those who have small hands. Since this a 3G Phone, it might be a good idea to get a wired or Bluetooth headsetto use when making calls. It might not be as fast as other tablet in the market like Nexus 7 or Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0, but it sure can do more than enough processing power.

The screen quality is great, it's a great device if you are looking for tablet with 3G and Phone function and with the right size of 7-inch, that is still pocketable in most purse and large pants pocket.

12 comments:

  1. It's nice that ASUS is providing us alternatives in the table and mobile phone market. It helps all competitors come up with better products.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. your right about that. Al least consumers have many choices in terms of functionality and prices

      Delete
  2. The features are highly techie. No wonder that the price is costly. ASUS has a high quality products especially this tablet.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great review! But I prefer N7 than this one but it has an amazing build too.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Every now and then, some consumers pay a fortune to take advantage of some of the high end gadgets. Thanks for the review, I will put Asus into my list of things to buy (taking consideration).
    But I guess, In addition to its features, primarily what I need to consider when choosing tablets are the specifications, one of which is the battery life. Sometimes I get easily annoyed at having to often to charge every so often.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess all of smartphones now have the same problem, the battery lasts only a day or less. Let's hope someone out there will invent a new type of battery that your device can last for a week or better yet a month or longer

      Delete
  5. Great review of this tablet. ASUS provides us with another alternative in the tablet market. The ASUS tablet looks like it has great graphics and user-interface.
    -Wanderer Juan

    ReplyDelete
  6. Your ASUS tablet review is quiet a catch, it has power and functionality.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I am sort of disappointed by the quality of the camera for a phone of that price. But the video quality looks very good.

    ReplyDelete
  8. the price is very high .i think i can buy that for 10.000 price

    ReplyDelete

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