Acer Iconia Tab Tablet Review
The bulky Iconia has a good screen, but bad battery life may give some consumers pause.
Device & Specs
We've found that although tablets seem to be more or less comparable in hardware, what they do with that hardware varies wildly. Both devices have 1GHz dual-core processors, both have DDR3 RAM, and both have comparable screen sizes. Where they differ mainly lies in the amount of RAM (the iPad has 512MB, whereas the Acer has 1GB), type of screen each has, and the batteries. Though you'd expect the much-heavier Acer Iconia Tab to have more machine packed into it, right? Wrong. With far more space on the inside of the casing and much more weight, the Acer Iconia Tab doesn't seem to come close to matching the performance of the market leader, not to mention the fact the added weight causes fatigue much quicker.
When comparing the Acer Iconia Tab to the iPad 2, we feel it important to note that Apple equipped its machine with a higher-performance IPS (in-plane switching) display, while the Acer Iconia Tab has the older TFT LCD display, which has a smaller viewing angle, worse color performance and higher power requirement. As the Apple iPad 2 outperforms the Acer Iconia Tab pretty handily in every measurable category outside of contrast ratio, we'll give this one to Apple.
While the iPad and iPad 2 are older than the Acer Iconia Tab, the Iconia has a long way to go to catch up to the iPad 2 in terms of battery life. While the Acer Iconia Tab can barely squeak out five hours of video or eBook reading, the iPad 2 comes close to eight hours for both. It's really a no-brainer to say that the iPad 2 will give you a much longer media experience.
Because both tablets have access to relatively the same applications through their respective application markets, there won't be much of a comparison in terms of software. As devices, however, please note that the much-heavier Acer Iconia Tab is much harder to hold for extended periods of time, leading to fatigue. The iPad 2 has done away with much of the weight of the original iPad, and is therefore much easier to hold.
Though both Android and Apple devices have access to a huge range of applications, the Apple App Store has been around for a little while longer, and still has more of a selection than the Android Market. That's not to say that there aren't several useful apps available to Android machines, just that the Apple App store is a bit better.
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