T-Mobile Springboard 4G
A 7 inch Honeycomb tablet
Last year many tablets with screens of 7″ were launched. They all ranged from OK to very good. But in all that chaos of brand new releases, some models simply did not get noticed. Even if they were actually good. That is, folks, the life of a gadget. In the end, all that matters is that there are people – like us, yes we’re being modest here – who notice every single device. And one of them is the T-Mobile Springboard 4G. Where most tablets don’t offer 3G connectivity, this one does. It was, in the tests we did for this review, better than Iconia’s Tab A100. Here is what made us say that.
A good price
The Springboard 4G will most likely attract you at first with its good price. It costs $179.99 if you sign a 2-year contract with T-Mobile. If you don’t do that, you can buy this tablet at a price of $429.99. Even so, it still is a pocket-friendly gadget. Consumers who use a tablet with only one of their hands can rest assured that this model will allow them to do that. Its build is at once substantial and durable. Its body’s construction is of aluminum, one of our favorite materials. And which will remind you of Apple’s iPad 2. The 14.1 ounces and 7.5″ 5.1″ x 0.4″ are dimensions that are similar to the Amazon Kindle Fire. The Iconia Tab A100 is thinner than the Springboard 4G.
The buttons for volume and power are on the right edge’s top. A headphone jack and a pair of speakers are revealed once the gadget is in portrait mode. The bottom edge is home for one micro USB port, one power jack and one microHDMI port. Speakers were pretty decent, but for better audio quality be sure to grab a pair of headphones. Or buy an external speaker if you fancy that option better.
16GB internal storage
Storage is onboard and is made of 16GB. That amount can easily become 48GB. And you will also be offered the following: a SIM card slot and a microSD slot.
On matters of touchscreen, the device is 7″. 1280 x 800 pixels are its resolution. Not bad, not bad. Blacks are deep. Text is so very sharp and colors look vivid all the time. Great brightness and wide viewing angles were two other pros. Responses came quickly when we tapped the display.
We know, we know, this tablet calls itself 4G. But seriously: its connection is more a 3G one. No worries: it’s not at all slow.
Powered by Android 3.2
The operating system is Android 3.2, so the Honeycomb version, not the newer one. That’s about all, since the user interface is still the same easy and nice-looking one as on other tablets running Android. The processor is Qualcomm’s 1.2GHz dual-core MSM8260 S3 Snapdragon. It delivered fast speeds and plenty of responsiveness. The only time it annoyed us in this test: when we scrolled a couple of pages on the Internet. But applications had fast loading times. 3G speeds were 1.3Mbps up and 6.6Mbps down.
The camera on the back and the one on the front are unremarkable. They shouldn’t even have been included, but ah well, blame the manufacturer. Battery life is advertised as being 7 hours in continuous mode. And 12 hours when the tablet is in standby. In real life situations, the gadget lasted 5 hours and 10 minutes. The Iconia Tab A100 turned in lousier numbers.
A tablet with great build, good price and really nice touchscreen is not such a difficult thing to find. The T-Mobile Springboard 4G might very well ring your bells. Once you get over its price and cameras.