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There are a lot of cheap Chinese Android tablets out there, and keeping them straight is tricky. What are the options that I should keep in mind?

  • Capacitive vs. resistive touch screen

  • HDMI out

  • Screen resolution

  • Screen size

  • GPU

  • CPU speed

  • NAND size

  • charging voltage

  • Whether the microSD card sticks out

  • Accelerometer

What else?

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Android version? I've seen a lot of them on 1.5 or 1.6 –  GAThrawn Nov 29 '10 at 13:56
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@GAThrawn sure - why not put it as an answer? –  Jay Bazuzi Nov 29 '10 at 21:34
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7 Answers

The top consideration I would have, other than finding something that meets your personal requirements, is the 3rd party development status of the device. In the cheap tablet market I wouldn't count on decent software from the manufacturer, so you want an actively developed aftermarket version to run.

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Be sure that it has access to Google app market. Some of the cheaper phones and tablets restrict access to the Google market and provide their own inferior versions instead.

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This page has a list of what to avoid:

  • Android 1.5, 1.6
  • VIA WM8505
  • 128MB RAM
  • Rockchip RK2808
  • Anything smaller than 5"
  • Cruz Tablet, Augen, MIPS
  • No g-sensor

and recommends 7" tablets with a TCC8902 processor from Shenzhen.

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I would add -no google android market or google apps. Look for the complete android stack. Totally agree on avoiding MIPS and Cruz Tablets (I own one). –  Ariel Popovsky Apr 27 '11 at 13:04
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I would not say avoiding MIPS is necessary. I own 6 devices (2 handsets - both Froyo, 3 tablets - 1 Donut, 1 Froyo, 1 ICS and one set top box - Froyo) and you'd be amazed at how many apps will work on the MIPS device that will not work on the some of the ARM devices. And with Magic Code, a hell of a lot of ARM-only apps (games mostly) run just fine on MIPS. –  Captain Toad Mar 18 '12 at 2:54
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Android 3.0, or Honeycomb, is the first version of Android designed specifically for tablets. IMHO, with Honeycomb sure to be on tons of tablets (including cheap Chinese ones!) in the very near future, you would be crazy to get a tablet running an older version of Android at this moment in time; even if that means hanging on a month or two.

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Why is it a problem to have older versions of Android? –  Village Jan 7 '12 at 2:54
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I purchased the PanDigital Supernova, which works really well. and as popular as it is, the Google android market doesnt support it, which I have found for several other devices. I am however able to download apps from the Amazon android market just fine and in many cases directly from the vendors website and have had no issues running any of them.

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  1. Android version
  2. Battery back-up
  3. Support of Google Play
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I've tried an ePad, which is the bottom line of the tablets, and I can't decide. The display is OK, the touch screen is so-so, WiFi is working, uptime is OK, but it's near to the speed we call dead slow. The browsing experience is so-so, but somehow the whole machine is so lazy and basic. Also, there's no Market, and I think lot of stuff couldn't even run on it, better case couldn't run fast enough. Try one before buy; if you don't except too much, maybe it will be your favourite "bed browsing" device.

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