Business | Technology

ePad Genie: The dual-sim reaches tablets

Flexibility and limited features at a low price

  • By Naushad K. Cherrayil, Staff Reporter
  • Published: 16:04 May 13, 2013
  • Gulf News

Dubai: Eurostar’s ePad Genie is a seven-inch 3G phablet that can perform as a tablet and a dual-SIM mobile phone. The era of the dual-SIM low cost phablet is upon us.

The Genie is powered by a dual-core Cortex A9 1.6 GHz processor with 1GB RAM. It has as 8GB storage capacity that can be expanded up to 32GB using micro-SD slot. It also has HDMI and micro USB ports.

The tablet runs on the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system and has a display resolution of 1024 x 600 pixels.

The back of the tablet is made of glossy polycarbonate and it has a good build quality.

It has a speaker and a 5MP camera at the back. The volume and sound quality of the speaker is much improved compared to earlier models.

There is also a 1.3MP front facing camera for video chat. The camera quality is not that great and night shooting is ruled out as it does not have a LED flash. The colours of the pictures tend to be washed out. Low-cost tablet manufacturers need to improve the quality of the rear camera.

Analogue channels

Video playback is really good and the tablet supports full HD and all other formats. A noticeable feature is the ability to watch free-to-air analogue channels through an inbuilt antenna. During my test, I found eight channels inside my home — but none were worth watching. The reception was grainy and full of noise. Outside, I was able to pick-up 10 channels, but only Dubai Sports was worth watching, despite poor reception. Eurostar has pre-installed Sygic offline GPS Navigation, which offers free 2D and 3D maps, apart from the usual Google navigation. However, many of the features like live traffic and road speed limits are not accurate. To activate this software, the user needs to download the entire mapping data of a country, to avoid relying on a data package.

The usual pre-loaded applications, including Google Talk, FM radio, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Gmail, are available. Surfing the Internet was smooth: there was no lag and pinch to zoom worked fine. However, it got slightly warm when using YouTube for a very long time.

The call quality of the device is crisp. The tablet can connect to the web and other devices via WiFi and Bluetooth.

The battery lasted more than six hours during intense tests, including watching two movies, listening to music and surfing the Internet with WiFi. With normal use it can last up to eight hours. It is priced at Dh799.

Fact Box

Pros

• Strong built quality

• Supports all video and music formats

• Decent price

• Dual-SIM support

• FM radio

 

Cons

• Battery life

• Camera specifications

• Old operating system

• Poor analogue TV reception

• Gets warm

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