There's no doubt the Android tablet market is heating up much like the phone market was a few years ago. Where before there were relatively few choices, manufacturers are now rolling out new models left and right - sometimes, it seems, with reckless abandon.
This is part one of a two-part review of the IdeaTab A2109 and S2110. Part two (the S2110 review) will be published tomorrow.
There's no doubt the Android tablet market is heating up much like the phone market was a few years ago. Where before there were relatively few choices, manufacturers are now rolling out new models left and right - sometimes, it seems, with reckless abandon. It's almost like Newton's third law in action: for every great tablet released, an equal but opposite tablet is released.
Lenovo took the wraps off its newest editions to the Ideatab tablet lineup this morning, announcing the S2110, A2107, and A2109. All three tablets cater to a different niche, with the S2110 sporting a Transformer-like keyboard dock, the A2109 coming in at a very affordable price point, and the A2107 hitting the 7" slate market.
The Ideatab S2110 is probably the most versatile of the bunch, thanks to its keyboard dock accessory.
Lenovo, the company best known for making some pretty sweet laptops and violating the seventh commandment, has released the IdeaTab A2109 at Best Buy. This 9" slate packs a 1.2GHz Tegra 3 processor, a 1280x800 display, 1GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage. At $300, this tablet is just barely more expensive than the comparable 16GB Nexus 7. For your extra $50 you not only get a bigger screen, but a rear facing camera and HDMI output.
So here's a novel idea: when a device reaches its end of life, manufacturers should provide users with a way to keep the flame burning. In a nutshell, that's what Lenovo has done with the Ideapad K1.
Here's the gist: the company is finished with this device. They no longer sell it, and it's clear that, past the most recent update (Android 3.2), they no longer plan to support it. So, they made a smart move: they built stock, unmodified Ice Cream Sandwich for the the K1, and released it to the public.
About a month ago, we saw Lenovo's previously unknown IdeaTab S2109 hit the FCC, providing a glimpse of little more than the company's new 4:3 tablet. At the time, Engadget's tipster claimed it sported a 9.7", 4:3 IPS display, TI OMAP chip, four speakers, and microSD. Turns out they were on point with all of that (though not about the March launch date, obviously), and today, the company has released an official reveal video for the tablet.
Owners of the Lenovo Thinkpad tablet have long been waiting for a way to root their devices... in fact, the situation is so dire that there is a $785 bounty for root. Or was, anyway: Dan Rosenberg has figured out a way to root the device, and Justin Case and utkanos have managed to get ClockworkMod Recovery (CWM) up and running without a hitch. Luckily, both rooting and installing CWM are quite simple (though you do need an SD card to install CWM).
It's finally happening - Intel processors are coming to Android phones, for better or for worse (we tend to think it's going to be the former). The world's first Intel smartphone? The Lenovo K800. But the real question is, is it actually going to be any good? Judging by the short time we spent with the device earlier today, the answer is a pretty emphatic "nope." The device in question has a 1280x720 4.5" display, 1.6GHz Z2460 Atom processor (single core with hyperthreading), and an 8MP camera.
Intel and Lenovo just announced the world's first Intel-powered Android smartphone: the K800. It utilizes Intel's Medfield mobile platform, with what we assume is the Atom Z2460 1.6GHz processor. Intel and Lenovo claim that the new Medfield platform is a "no compromise" mobile processor in terms of performance and battery life, though no exact figures were quoted. It actually looks pretty similar to Intel's reference device, and will be available in China (no US availability announced) some time in Q2.