Creative has hit the Android tablet sector with two designs. One is the7in ZiiO offering; the other – the subject of this review – has a 10 inch screen. The company’s idea, presumably, is to cover off both bases in terms of what users find an attractive size for a tablet. But has Creative done enough?
Short on wow
At £249.99 for the 8GB model and £269.99 for the 16GB, the 10in ZiiO’s price is one indicator that you shouldn’t look for greatness. So, for example, the build is OK but not awe-inspiring. We do like the media control buttons that sit next to Android’s usual Home, Back, Search and Menu buttons – but the device feels oversized and clunky, and at 650g the ZiiO 10 is a bit too heavy to hold in one hand for any length of time.
Android has been stripped down, with lots of familiar apps missing and several ZiiO alternatives in their place. Most annoying for many will be the fact that Google’s Android Market is absent. Lots of the current crop of tablets lack Android Market. Creative offers its own alternative, but the selection of apps is small.
Out of the box, our Creative ZiiO 10 inch ran Android 2.1, but we were immediately offered the chance to upgrade to 2.2. This happens over Wi-Fi as this is not a SIM-supporting tablet.
As well as lacking SIM support, there’s no GPS, and the ZiiLABS ZMS-08 processor is a bit on the slow side. We found that while web pages look great on the 1024×600 pixel screen, it suffers from a real jerkiness. There are frequent pauses while the screen responds to finger sweeps and presses, chiefly due to the fact that the screen is resistive, rather than using the newer multi-touch capacitive technology. Viewing angles aren’t great, either. There’s an SD card slot for upping the installed memory, which is handy, and HDMI out will please some, but Creative doesn’t bundle a cable.
- Large screen for web browsing.
- Slow processor; cut down suite of Android apps.
We just aren't convinced by the Creative ZiiO 10. With Android 3.0 just around the corner, the OS already feels old hat, and while an Android 3.0 tablet will cost you more, you'll get a whole lot more out of it.