I managed to pick up one from my local Coles, but it was the last one.
The Pendo Pad 7 is no Google Nexus 7, for sure – but hey, it’s a $30 tablet. Having played with it for the last couple of hours, I’m not going to complain too much at that price.
Here’s a basic run-down of the specs:
* 7-inch 1024×600-px TFT panel (not I-PS)
* Allwinner A31 quad-core Cortex A7 CPU
* 1GB RAM
* 8GB Flash (about 3.5GB available)
* 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi
* MicroHDMI port
* MicroSD port
* USB OTG port (also provides power, USB OTG adapter and USB 2.0 PC connection cable supplied)
* Android KitKat/4.4.2 installed (no available updates)
* Google Play store app included
1. No GPS or Bluetooth – GPS is neither here nor there, really, but Bluetooth would’ve been nice. Still, it’s $30, it’s cheaper than a Chromecast – I’ve pad more for music CDs that this!
2. Screen quality – well, at least its 1024×600-px and that’s something. The viewing angles could use some help and it’s not particularly bright. Fine for indoors, but the brightness control doesn’t appear to vary things all that much and it has no auto-brightness control.
3. No Adobe Flash support – that makes web video a bit of a pain. I haven’t looked into options for this yet, but I’ll wait and see. There may be a hack available.
4. Build quality – the shell flexes a little more than I’d prefer and if you’re too rough, you can see ripple on the panel if you press too hard.
1. The microHDMI port – it’s a surprise because it’s not listed anywhere as a feature on the box, nor is it listed on the side-panel spec list, so I wasn’t expecting it, but I’m more than happy it’s there.
2. The Allwinner A31 CPU – despite being a Cortex A7 design, it’s actually surprisingly zippy. The KitKat install is pretty much bog-standard, so there’s nothing too onerous it has to do.
3. USB charging – quite a few budget tablets at the moment come with DC socket chargers rather than USB, which is much more convenient, so I’ll take that too.
Conclusion / TL;DR
If you can find a Coles Supermarket still with one of these in stock at $30, it’s worth a speculative bet. Bottom line, you’re not going to find too many quad-core tabs for $30 floating around. Yes, it’s missing GPS and Bluetooth, but it has microHDMI, KitKat and Google Play store ready to go. The 1024×600-px screen won’t win any awards from me, but really, it’s a tablet – for $30! You’re not going to find a better price, even on eBay. (Yep, I’ve looked.)