Acer Iconia Tab W500 Review

The Acer Iconia Tab can be used with or without a docking station which turns it from a tablet to a notebook. This is a medium priced tablet comparable to the Samsung Galaxy 7 and cheaper than the Dell Latitude, another Windows 7 tablet that converts to a notebook. A special feature of this tablet is the Acer Ring Control Interface which with 5 finger grab control allows you to launch the unique touch portal and scroll effortlessly through a variety of applications and utilities with your fingertips.

Features

The Acer Iconia Tab W500 is powered by a 1 GHz AMD dual core processor with 2GB RAM; has a 32GB solid state hard drive and uses the Windows 7 Home Premium 32 –bit operating system. Microsoft Office Starter edition 2010 is installed together with an ATI Radeon HD 6250 graphics card for high resolution viewing. It has the full range of connectivity with two USB 2.0 ports and an HDMI port with HDCP Support plus Bluetooth 3.0 . It is also configured with HD audio support with a Dolby advanced audio v2 enhancement for crystal clear sound. The screen is multi touch, with 1280 x 800 resolution and LED backlit for comfortable viewing. The dual function enabled by the docking station with its full sized chiclet keyboard allows users to either have an ultra portable tablet, or connect it to the station and use it as a netbook. The docking station also has the additional features of Ethernet connection for internet use and a USB port for other external devices.

Usability

The screen is touch sensitive and allows fast access to entertainment with the ring control interface and wide viewing angles for an enhanced viewing experience. The access to Windows 7 is via bigger icons and a dedicated control bar, features specific to the Acer Iconia Tab. To improve users connections the Acer Iconia Tab features SocialJogger which brings together Flickr, Facebook and YouTube in one place for instant and simultaneous connection. There are also two 1.3 mega pixel HD front and rear-facing cameras. Acer have their own multi-media sharing system called Acer Clear.fi which allows the sharing and storage of any media between Clear.fi enabled devices in any room in the home. The Acer Iconia Tab has up to 6-hours battery life for Internet browsing and up to 4 hours for HD Video Playback.

What Customers Say

A smart little feature on this tablet is the border round the screen which makes it easy to hold without smudging the screen. Users report that the AMD processor is extremely fast and capable of playing movies and music with ease. The speakers and sound are of good quality and all connectivity works efficiently. Customers suggest buying a capacitive touch stylus to keep the screen free of fingerprints. Most find the screen very responsive and are pleased with simple but smart features such as the windows button allowing you to access the start menu and task bar with ease. A particular thumbs up goes to the brightness of the screen and the quietness of the unit, either as a tablet or a netbook. When assembled as a netbook, the tablet part feels a bit top heavy but it does not affect its use, but it is possibly not as comfortable using it as a laptop. Customers have really put the CPU through its paces with 3D design work, Skype calls, and multi tasking in the extreme; reading, downloading a program, listening to music, pausing and minimizing a movie and chatting with multiple friends on Gtalk/Facebook. The Acer Iconia Tab has handled all of this so has very passionate fans!

Overall verdict

This tablet has a great price performance ratio, is fast, easy to use, and acts both as a tablet and a netbook with Windows 7 efficiency. It is a good tablet for multi tasking and whilst not as elegant as some other tablets is nevertheless very good value for money and delivers an exceedingly good range of functions.