After a lot of waiting I finally got my quad core tablet Onda V972, which is considered the best chinese iPad alternative.
It took a time to arrive in brazil because he was sold out in Chinese market, taking about a month to be acquired by the store and sent to me. Please don't ask me how much I paid in taxes because I can't answer it here on the site.
Now it is a commom in all Chinese products coming with this specification “retina display”. However, in the case of Onda V972, the resolution is really high, so the specs are correct.: amazing 2048 x 1536, greater than FullHD!
The box is standard, with the tablet turned down at the top. In the box there is a foam lining to protect the appliance in transportation.
Accessories? Only one power supply slightly bigger than usual and a micro USB cable. No headset or earphones.
Look at the picture below and check how the power supply is a bit larger than usual. The specification says 5V 2.5 to, is that exaggerated?
Here are all the items that come in the package except the power supply and the tablet. For a change, the manuals are useless, not even resemble the product.
Here is the tablet, protected by plastic and ready to be power on!
At the first boot I got scared. because In the middle of the first boot screen the tablet made a noise and turned off by itself. Then I power it on again today and it worked. Strange…
The finish quality of the LCD screen is quite good, although it looks bad on the picture below because I have not yet removed the protective plastic.
On the Left of the picture, near where we would have the iPad home button, there is a 2M pixels front camera.
The back of the tablet is all made of aluminum, what is good for dissipating heat from the device, specially if the screen is set to maximum brightness.
In the photo below we have the side buttons “Home” and “button”. One problem here is that the power “button” can be pressed accidentally while you're just holding the tablet.
We can see here the details of the 5M pixel rear camera.
On the other side we have the headphone, USB OTG, MicroHDMI to connect the TV and microSD card slot. At the bottom two speakers. I didn't like a lot of the audio, it is very low and distorted. Better to use a headset.
The tablet is rather thin, look at the picture and check that it's only slightly thicker than a coin 1 real.
Below we have the tablet connected. This is not the original wallpaper, I switched to take some different photos. Below we have the traditional unlock screen 4.
The original home screen was just ridiculous. Full of widgets and Chinese crap that made no sense. I removed the widgets, and uninstalled or disable all the programs I do not wanted. The splash screen was much more fluid and functional this way. Fluidity is really a problem on this tablet. Although everything works normally, the screen scroll looks kind of shaky and the icons do not respond immediately. Perhaps the resolution is too high and that's the cause of this inconvenience.
We only have WiFi settings, because this tablet does not have BlueTooth. I already knew that and I was not disappointed. In my opinion bluetooth on a tablet is not really usefull.
In the screen settings we have a smart color “system” and some intelligent brightness settings. I have disabled both and re-I enabled not noticing any difference.
Not sure if I would insert a memory card in my Onda V972 because the internal memory is 16GB, enough for anything I would want.
The screen brightness is quite strong. So strong that wasted most of 90% the battery charge. And there is no much change if you set to the minimum brightness, because the brightness is very high anyway.
The settings screen somewhat resemble the Ipad mixed with Android. Look at the account settings.
O tablet came with firmware 1.32 e I know there is a new one 1.35 available for installation. According to the forums V972 is hard to be bricked, IE, you can not make it unusable by changing firmware. There is a software similar to clockworkmod already installed, available if you turn the unit on after pressing the home key for five seconds.
O AnTuTu benckmarking we have 9736, which is pretty good considering the absurdly high screen resolution.
We have below the 3D test on AnTuTu.
I took a picture of this tablet taking a picture of a magazine. I didn't much like the camera, I think it is a little noisy. It takes passable pictures in a well illuminated area, but it is just horrible in dark places. A good feature, unusual in most tablets, is the autofocus, you touch the screen and the camera tries to focus in this position.
This is a picture taken by the tablet. When I saw it on my computer, I did not think that's so bad. It seems much noisier in the retina display.
Look at the photo of my Cat "Pucca" using only one fluorescent lighting. The photo quality is worst than my Jiayu G3 cellphone, but certainly much better than any Chinese tablet I've ever used.
The front camera is also not very good, but that is expected.
The screen resolution is great, better than my monitor. Watching videos in FullHD, As this one from TV show Friends, can see that the quality of the Retina display is quite good.
To play videos I recommend the MXplayer software, that words normally with Hardware decoding.
Below we can check the screen brightness at maximum emitting white.
It is not possible to see, but the screen below is not white, but formed by a grid of about 3 to 4 pixels. Only very close to the screen it is possible to see the resolution capabilities.
Below there is a square test and interference resolution.
Youtube and other APPs work normally. Actually, Everything I tested up to now is working.
1080p videos played from YouTube are fantastic on retina screen. This is a video from Angry Video Game Nerd.
Facebook also works. Interestingly, Facebook has a better and smoother scroll than the home screen, and that makes me think I'm actually using an Ipad. Only the Launcher is not as good, maybe it would be better in a future update?
No problem in downloading anything from the market. Fully functional.
Gmail also works…
The browser that comes with this tablet is very good, but you can download Chrome and it works very well.
One common concern on Chinese tablets is WiFi performance. I can say that this device works as well as my notebook. In the picture Below we have AdrianoWiFi network two rooms away and AdrianoWiFiSala network just one room away. Both are working on my Onda V972.
But if you're on the street and need internet, a good solution is to use a modem carrier, that usually works on Android. This is a Huawei E173 from Vivo Brazilian operator.
To connect the modem to the tablet you will need a microUSB OTG cable, sold on DealExtreme (link at the end of the text).
Connection is made using the same USB port to recharge the tablet.
As soon as you disconnect the WiFi the 3G is activated. It takes a little more than 10 seconds.
In the picture below we have 3G modem connected and the network signal is shown on android status bar.
The APN configuration can be made on this screen, but everything works fine without any configuration, There is no need for special settings.
You can even share the 3G internet with other devices creating a WiFi HotSpot.
To test the screen I downloaded a game called Asphalt 7 and it worked great. Perfect graphics and smooth moviments.
Here is my first “race” with the tablet.
The screen with all the apps has a different wallpape than the main screen. I do not know how to change that…
Another interesting application is editing my posts using the wordpress app.
I made a video showing some features, including testing the iLauncher copy of iPad interface. Check it out:
For the price, only U$ 280, is a great alternative to the iPad, which costs between 1300 (model 2) to 1600 (brazilian reais) or the galaxy tab which is also close to this price. Everything I tried to run works well and fast. The aluminum construction is sturdy and looks like it will last day to day transport and operation.
The problems is the launcher, android home screen, with slow graphics and not very fluid animations. Maybe it would it be better after a software update? I think besides the camera, that it is only passable, the main defect of the tablet is the audio, that is low and a little fuzzy. It is possible to compensate by downloading an equalizer software from market, but is still too low sometimes.
But, in general, It is worth it: very low price, CPU better than most tablets including Ipad, 2GB of RAM and 16 GB of internal memory. It seems that the Android animations are really a problem on higher resolution, only the Ipad can do better.
For those who wanted to check products prices and specifications, I leave the links to DealExtreme and Pandawill. I think the Onda V972 still has some stock problems, but of all Chinese tablets I researched this one appears to be the best. Here are the links:
OTG micro-USB cable to connect the modem tablets – http://dx.com/p/micro-usb-male-to-female-usb-otg-adapter-cable-for-samsung-galaxy-s3-i9300-black-8 cm-153,644