• Alcatel OneTouch Pop 10 Review

    In technically advanced countries, when buying a tablet, we have the luxury of lots of choice, from the cheap through to the premium.

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    Alcatel OneTouch Pop 10

    You often get what you pay for with cheaper tablets being unreliable or not particularly desirable whilst the premium ones can be a bit too feature rich or expensive for what you need. Having been testing the Alcatel onteouch, it is a little different. It is a superb mid range tablet that delivers what I believe to be the best value for money that I have seen in a tablet to date. Let me tell you a bit more in this full review. If English is not your native language use the captions below and to read the full written review that accompanies this video head to blog.clove.co.uk Firmly sitting in the mid-range the Pop 10 specs are shown on screen now. The 2 piece kit consists of the Pop 10 tablet and the keyboard dock. All the technology is in the tablet, but the dock offers a keyboard for the tablet and pairs with it via Bluetooth. It is a secure fit too and when connected opens and closes like a laptop. A 9.6” IPS touchscreen display, with a resolution of 1280 x 800 is what you find on the Pop 10. It is functional and reasonably good on the battery life, unfortunately it is considerably inferior to the likes of the Retina iPads and the 2k screen on the Sony Z4 tablet It feels a little more resistive to the touch and on inspection graphics are by no means as sharp. For browsing the vast majority of the web and writing out a document or watching a few videos online, this is perfectly acceptable. Installed on the 8GB of internal memory is Android 5.0, making the Pop 10, bang up to date. Approximately 3.2GB is available for use. Whilst it is virtually stock Android, there are about 20 additional apps pre-installed. Remove these if they are not for you, to gain a bit more space. There is the microSD card slot for contents like media, but apps cannot be moved to the SD card. In my mind, the useful additional apps are Cloud Backup, which gives the facility to easily backup content on the tablet to other sources. Connect. An immensely powerful application, if working on the tablet you can pair your mobile phone with this app and manage calls, text messages, notifications and more from the tablet. Essentially making your tablet the phone. File Manager. Great for navigating to files and folders on the tablet. Peel Smart Remote. The tablet has an IR blaster and this allows you to actually use it. WPS office. Allows you to easily create and manage office documents on the go and is handy even if not used regularly for the odd document you may need to create or download. Rather frustratingly some of the apps pre-installed including some of the more useful (Peel Smart Remote) do not work in landscape mode. Being an Android device it is really easy to add various different email accounts, sign into social networks easily and personalise the device too. Of course you get standard apps such as Maps, Chrome browser, Google+, Drive, Play Books and more. There is an FM radio on board too. General performance was ok. The processor and 1GB of RAM did struggle though quite a lot of the time though. If you are a real multitasker then the Pop 10 will struggle to keep up. I could put up with this if I was generally doing only one or two things at once and not really needing to use if for demanding things then it is ok. Connectivity is really good on this little device. Bluetooth, WiFi (including 5GHz), 2g, 3g & 4g connectivity with a SIM card inserted. Use it as a phone, make calls, send messages or use just a data SIM for web browsing. It supports microSD memory cards, charges via microUSB and does too offer USB host support, so you can easily transfer files to a memory stick. The rear mounted speaker is not brilliant but it is not at all bad. It is loud enough and produces a reasonable sound. At full volume it can distort a little and you can feel the vibrations through the body of the tablet where it is working hard to push the sound out. A 5 megapixel camera is on the rear and 2 on the front. The cameras as a I would have expected, functional. Most results were ok, but the best came out in bright sunlight and the odd few were quite good. Lighter colours were a little over exposed and dark colours a little saturated, but far from the worst I have seen. You can capture still and video and there are a good array of settings from white balance to a time, for those who wish to tweak them. When it comes to the front camera, it is good for video calls if holding the tablet only. In the keyboard dock, sat on a desk it pointed at my chest and neck unless i sat a full arm’s length away which is not all that practical. a bit of a design oversight here I think. Overall, for a tablet, the camera it is pretty good. 4600mAh of battery power are packed into the Pop 10. Charged via a microUSB connection on the bottom of the tablet, you can to charge the tablet via the microUSB port on the keyboard dock. The gold pins on the connector that holds the tablet in place transfer the charge. It is a smaller battery than I would really like to see. For those of us who have a tablet at home that gets a few hours of use a week, a bigger battery means more usage time and certainly better standby results. Add into this the facility of 4G connectivity via the SIM slot and more regular users are going to get less than a day from it. During my time with it, with mixed usage, primarily on WiFi i was getting 2-3 days on average with about 90 minutes of usage each day. When it comes to tablets that come supplied with keyboard docks there are not that many. Two main competitors spring to mind, the Sony Xperia Z4 tablet and the ASUS Transformer series are just a couple of examples. At the time of recording, you can pick the Pop 10 up from Clove SIM free for £179.99 including VAT. Usually it retails for £239. The 4G enabled Z4 tablet is £579, that is a whopping £400 more. The Z4 is the pinnacle of design and specs but that is a serious difference unless you really need or want that. There are many that could work with the Alcatel for the cost saving. There are then the Samsung and Apple products which keyboards can be added too, but you are still looking at £350+ in the best scenarios. If you had not guessed it, I really like the Pop 10. If I did not already have a functioning ASUS Transformer myself, this would be what I replace it with. Whilst the Sony and Samsung models bring some advantages they do to bring with them an added cost that for me, in my circumstances I could not justify, as much as I like them. The same could be said for you. No denying for the power user or those who simply want the ‘best’ then the Pop 10’s sluggish performance, lack of memory and less than fantastic battery life means it does not fall into this category. However it firmly wins in the value for money category; nice work Alcatel, can you upscale this at a good price for the power users?

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