Thursday, January 17, 2013

Scroll Extreme 9.7" Tablet PC isn’t likely to worry the likes of the Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime at the upper echelons

Posted by K.NAVNEETHA RAO at 11:34 AM

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Created by UK-based tech brand Storage Options, the Scroll Extreme 9.7" Tablet PC isn’t likely to worry the likes of the Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime at the upper echelons of the Android 4.0 top table, or even rival the Acer Iconia Tab A200 for mid-level shelf space but, at a couple of pennies less than £180, and running Ice Cream Sandwich out of the box – it’s a tablet that can’t be ignored

Scroll Extreme : Build

At first glance you’d be forgiven for mistaking the Scroll Extreme with a certain other tablet. To call it an iPad-clone would be understating it. An original iPad that is. Okay, so it’s not quite as chunky at an acceptable 9.9mm but there’s no getting away from that almost identical brushed silver backing and the fact that it sports a 9.7-inch, 4:3 aspect ratio display with a thick black bezel.

Unlike the iPad though, there’s a merriment of port activity with no fewer than six sockets for you to explore, including microSD, mini HDMI, Micro USB and a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Despite its obvious lack of originality the Scroll is still a nice looking machine with a build quality that exceeds its lowly cost.

Scroll Extreme: Screen

It’s only once you fire up the Scroll Extreme that you get your first real taste of the 'budget' flavour. The 9.7-inch, 1024 x 768, IPS display is more than acceptable for the monetary outlay but that doesn’t make its disappointing demeanour any easier to take.

It’s lifeless, with dull colours and is overly glossy. Viewing angles aren’t great and it doesn’t hold up well under bright lights. Thankfully, it’s capacitive and the multitouch response is okay.

Scroll Extreme: Usability

At 620g it’s not the sveltest tablet in town but it’s no chubster either. It’s curved edges make it easy to hold and, as mentioned, there are a multitude of connectivity options – although we’re not really sure what the double Micro USB is for. We couldn’t mount the Scroll Extreme as an explorable drive and charging is only capable using the supplied DC adaptor.

8GB of storage isn’t too bad – although you’ll probably have to make use of the microSD expansion if you want to store HD content.

There’s a 2-megapixel camera on the back which, weirdly, seems to be placed at the bottom when the Extreme is in its natural portrait position. We’re not sure Storage Options should have even bothered though; the test shots we took were some of the worst we’ve ever seen from a mobile device this side of 2005. There’s a VGA camera on the front that does the job for video calling.

Scroll Extreme: Performance

Powered by a Cortex A8 1.2GHz, Mali-400 dualcore processor, the Scroll Extreme is surprisingly nippy and handles itself pretty well with graphics-hungry games and HD video.

You may get the odd bit of lag when switching between homescreens or firing up apps but, on the whole, it’s a pleasant experience. Crashes are quite regular, however – let’s hope a software update sorts this out soon.

Worshipers of the Church of Android will be pleased to hear that Ice Cream Sandwich has been left in its natural state, just as God, sorry – Google, intended.

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