- Consumer Electronics & Personal Gadgets
Motorola Xoom Tablet with Android 3.0 Honeycomb - 10.1 inch Capacitive Multi-Touch Touchscreen and Flash
Why did it take so long for an Android Tablet to measure 10.1 inches? The short answer is that Android operating systems prior to 3.0 (Honeycomb) were not optimized for displays larger than 7 inches. While previous Android versions 1.6 to 2.3 worked well on cell phones and 7 inch tablets – larger displays were not supported. Finally, the Motorola Xoom Android Tablet is available – one of the first popular tablets to be loaded with Android 3.0 or code name Honeycomb. If you have used an early Android Tablet you may have experienced a less than enjoyable experience. Honeycomb promises to offer an improved experience by offering increased multi-tasking and more robust functionality. Who would have expected a holographic UI (user interface)? Sounds interesting but I too wondered - What in the world is a holographic UI?
I believe that it is a way to describe the ease in which a user can access anything that is on the Xoom from anywhere on the Xoom. The Action Bar remains at the top of each screen and offers immediate access to Apps, Widgets, content or Navigation options. Just a swipe of your finger moves you through 5 different screens – each one totally customizable. The 3D appearance of the Home Screen is visually stunning and fun to multi-task from.
The Xoom’s widescreen HD Multi-Touch Capacitive Touchscreen measures 10.1 inches with a 16:10 aspect ratio and resolution of 1280X800.
The Xoom offers 5 layers of (home) screens that make it easy and possible to park your apps, widgets, media and content in an organized manner. You can move them from page to page if you prefer and you can customize them however works best for you. Regardless of which screen you are currently using, there is always a way to access or search for any other app regardless of which of the other 4 screens it is parked in. It is just as easy to find your contacts, movies, photos or other content that you have added to the Xoom.
Battery Life from its Li-Ion Standard Battery lasts for up to 10 hours makes it possible to enjoy the functionality of the Motorola Xoom. Of course, battery life will always depend on how the tablet is used. For those that continuously search the Internet over 3G – you can expect up to 9 hours battery life. Browsing the Internet over Wi-Fi gains about one hour of battery life increasing the total to 10 hours – the same applies to continuous play of videos. Don’t use your tablet everyday but you want it available at a moment’s notice? Standby time on the Motorola Xoom is about 14 days.
Connectivity options include 3G (to be upgraded to 4G LTE), Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR and WiFi (both 2.4GHz and 5GHz) 802.11 b/g/n. You can connect to Hotspots easily via the WiFi capabilities. In addition there is an integrated 2.0 Micro USB port, a 3.5mm headphone jack and GPS (AGPS).
Features that make the Motorola Xoom a full featured tablet include:
Android 3.0 (Honeycomb)
Adobe 10.1 Flash compatibility
Front and Back Facing Cameras - 2 Megapixels and 5 Megapixels
720P Video Recording
3D Graphics hardware accelerator
Light Sensor (ambient)
Available in multiple colors
The internal memory is 32GB and can be expanded with the addition of a MicroSD card up to a 32GB capacity. Full 1080P HD video playback is available via the HDMI-out port. Video recording at 720P is possible at 30ftps. Still photos can be shot at 5 Megapixels (2592X1944) enhanced with a Dual-LED flash, 8X Digital Zoom and Auto Focus. Also available are Color Effects, Scenes and White Balance. The secondary front facing camera is 2 Megapixels (1600X720).
The Nvidia Tegra 2 dual core 1GHz processor with 1GB DDR2 RAM provides ample power and speed to operate the Xoom while taking advantage of its numerous features. It has been a long time coming and many Tablet enthusiasts are excited that it has arrived. Having Flash available is a deal maker for many that have avoided the iPad due to their lack of Flash. I am researching the claim that Xoom users can send and receive text messages from the device but nothing definitive has serviced yet. Apparently the hardware is there with the 3G models but maybe it is not activated. Would the same hold true for the iPad? It looks as though there are still a lot of hidden goodies residing inside Tablets – that are just waiting to be discovered by tablet users.
I think that the many differences separating all of the tablets available today are a good thing. Hopefully both the Android and Apple camps will learn from each other. We will all have better choices in the future if they pay attention to what we really want and need in our next Tablet purchase.