It has been just over two months since I wrote the first impressions review of the Hudl2 back at the end of October in 2014. My first review and unboxing was very complementary and I was particularly impressed with the specs. My first review is here.
I want to start this review with a reminder of the price of the tablet: Tesco are currently stocking the Hudl2 on their website for £129 with cases ranging from £10 to £25+.
For £129 you are getting a good spec machine.
The specs are very impressive and deliver excellent value for money:
- 8.3” full HD display
- 16GB storage
- 5MP back camera
- 1.2MP front camera
- 8 hour battery life
- Powered by an intel 1.83GHz quad-core processor
In comparison other similar priced Android tablets include:
Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8-inch (Black, Wi-Fi) - currently reduced on Amazon to £145: 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 16GB storage, 8” display
Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1-inch - (White, Wi-Fi) - again reduced on Amazon to £190: 1.6GHz dual-core processor, 16GB storage, 10” display
Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7-inch Tablet (Black) - £131 on Amazon: 1.2GHz dual-core processor, 8GB storage, 7” display
Kindle Fire HDX Tablet, £99 - 2.2GHz quad-core processor, 1GB storage, 7” display
The Hudl2 holds up well against similar priced tablets and I believe offers very good value for money. A number of people have made the following points to me:
“It is not an iPad” - well obviously it isn’t and it is not fair to make the comparison as they are very different products with different specs.
“You can get cheaper Android tablets for under £50” - having seen and used the tablets that are under £50 they are very different products from the Hudl2
The 8.3” (1920x1200) full HD display gives an excellent picture from a good range of angles. I recently used it on a long train journey (more about that later) with the brightness set to a minimum. Even under these conditions the image was crisp and showed good contrast.
Tesco state that the Hudl2 has up to 8 hour battery life. We all know that under ‘real-life’ situations battery life often is much shorter. I recently was on a long (long) train ride where I put this to the test. I had downloaded approximately 8 hours of video from the BBC iPlayer app and armed with a par of Tesco Hudl Earphones (with tangle free cable) I watched just over 7 hours of video. By the end of the journeys I still had over 25% battery life left. I was very impressed with this which exceeded my expectations.
“hudl2’s supercharged with a 1.83GHz Intel® Atom™ quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM, making it lightning fast and up for anything”
I have hammered my processor over the last two months, running games, home security camera apps, productivity tasks, video recording and much video playback. With enough apps open and dynamic wallpaper it is possible to trip the tablet up, but for normal everyday use you can definitely throw a lot at it. The startup time for apps seems very snappy and I have not experienced much lag.
One of the biggest surprises of the Hudl2 was the sound quality of the speakers. The stereo Dolby Audio system provides sound with both punch and quality. The design of the case provides good acoustics with the speakers not covered up. The speakers are more than ample for watching movies or listening to music. Again, this was a very positive aspect of the tablet.
The front facing camera (1.2MP/720p) is disappointing but I was pleased with the quality from the rear (5MP/1080p) camera and have included some test photos here. It did take some time to get used to holding the tablet and pressing the shutter button but I do think that this will improve as I get more used to holding it.
This is definitely a serious tablet but also makes a great piece of kit for the kids to use too. I am very impressed with the built in parental controls, these were easy to activate and have set up individual profiles for both my six year old and my ten year old boys. Both profiles give access to age appropriate apps and websites. Time limits can be set for each profile too. One feature i particularly liked was the ability to set a bed-time shut down time at the end of the evening.
For more information on the parental controls I’ve included the Tesco video below.
I am extremely impressed with the high build quality, excellent screen and very affordable price point of the Hudl2 from Tesco. The tablet exceeded my expectations of a mid priced Android device. The Hudl2 is a very good place to start if you are looking for a tablet for the commute to work, to take on holiday or to share as a family. I wonder what the Hudl3 will look like?
First look at the Hudl2
Hudl2 camera test
Hudl2 little book of treats
Official Tesco Hudl2 page
The Hudl2 boasts two cameras (1.2MP front and 5MP back).
My first impressions were mixed, as I am not used to taking photos on a tablet it took me a while to be hold the camera, press the shutter and touch to focus. After a while I mastered it and took some good photos.
- Nice colour saturation (no filters needed)
- Reasonably bright screen made it easy to see your subject outside
- Reasonably fast shutter speed
- Initially hard to juggle focusing, holding the tablet and pressing the shutter
- Transferring the photos into iPhoto on my MacBook was not as simple as I would have hoped. I had to download Android File Transfer
- Photos slightly overexposed
Overall, I am very pleased with the camera. For a budget Android tablet the Tesco Hudl2 is very impressive.
Ebay is full of budget USB keyboard for Android tablets. This review is of a typical budget keyboard case.
For $10 my expectations were low and after unboxing I was not altogether disappointed.
- The faux leather feel is not unpleasant to hold and feels sturdy
- The design feels rugged and the stand on the back holds the tablet at a good angle for viewing
- The keyboard feels clunky but is relatively accurate
- The stylus was unusable as it was for a non-capacitive display
This is not a case / keyboard combo I will be able to use for content creation but I do feel that it has potential for typing the odd email.
I have recently come across a great app for Android called Maluuba which offers a number of Siri style functionality but also a lot more.
Maluuba can be downloaded from here http://www.maluuba.com
The interface is clean and simple to use and I was particularly impressed with the tiles on the explore tab. Integration into calendar and social network functionality is slick and worked well.
The voice interpretation is reliably accurate and generally understands my accent!
Maluuba is definitely an app that will be one of my favourites and offers excellent functionality.
I will post a more detailed review later.