Liz Garcia

Acer Iconia W3-810 has lots to offer at an affordable price

The Acer Iconia W3-810 has a lot to offer for a tablet

One of my favorite perks here at Intel is getting the opportunity to take home and try out some of the devices in Intel’s demo room. So when I was asked if I would like to try out the Acer Iconia W3-810-1600 this past summer I did not hesitate to say yes. The tablet did come with instructions, but I didn’t bother to read them. Why? Well, I wanted to see how intuitive it was to use this device.

This tablet is essentially a mini PC

The W3-810 is an 8-inch tablet which I find it to be a perfect tablet size for me. It fits into my small bag without weighing too much. The chassis itself is plastic, light-weight and slim. It is small enough to hold and comfortable to type on the virtual keyboard. Yet, it has a large enough screen to read online articles or watch videos.

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Figure 1: Acer Iconia W3-810-1600

This tablet didn’t come with a detachable keyboard, but there are Bluetooth keyboards made especially for this tablet if you want to check them out here. I had no difficulty connecting an external keyboard and mouse using the micro USB 2.0 port and the process was quick.I used this tablet for a few weeks as part of the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) program we have here at Intel to see how much work I was able to accomplish. One of things I really liked about this device is the fact I was able to use Microsoft Office 365 just like on my PC to manage spreadsheets, type up documents and create PowerPoint presentations. This tablet essentially became my mini-PC. I was also able to synch documents between this tablet and my work laptop using Sky Drive so that I can continue to work on my projects on the go.

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Figure 2: Split screen multi-tasking feature.

Taking my entertainment on the go

Connecting to a Wi-Fi network was easy. The device was able to pick up and connect to a Wi-Fi network with no issues whether I was in the office, at home or in a Wi-Fi hotspot. When it came to web browsing, I really liked the fact that this tablet supports full versions of the Firefox and Chrome web browsers in addition to Internet Explorer. Using other web browsers is something not all tablets can do which I found to be a little frustrating at times.

There is one feature of this tablet that I want to really highlight and that’s the battery life. It has an impressive 8-hour battery life; I measured 7 hours and 41 minutes with multiple applications running in the backgrounds. This is a huge benefit for me since in addition to accomplishing work-related tasks, I like to relax after work and watch movies on Netfilix, browse the web or play games without having to scramble for the nearest outlet.

There are some features on this tablet that could use improvement. One would be to incorporate an IPS (In-Plane Switching) screen, so I can view the screen from different angles instead of keeping it steady at an optimal viewing angle. The screen resolution could also be improved; it seemed a little grainy and lacked the sharpness and brightness of color. When accessing apps, desktop applications or browsing the web, there was a bit of a lag. I also did experience a little bit of lag when rotating the screen from portrait to landscape  However, I found there to be more positive trade-offs that you can get with this tablet for $379.99.

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Figure 3: Sample photos taken with the 2 MP camera.

For one, it operates on Windows 8.1 which is a really good operating system once I grew accustomed to it. Secondly, it supports Microsoft Office 365 which makes this tablet a productivity device in addition to the entertainment device most tablets are designed to be. Third, it has 2 GB of memory, 32 GB of storage, with a micro SD slot for additional storage, and runs on Intel’s Atom Z2760 processor. Not to mention there are two cameras; a front and rear-facing 2 MP camera and an HDMI port in case you want to connect to your TV. Lastly, this tablet has a good 8-hour battery life. This tablet definitely packs a lot of functionality with a good price.

My final thoughts…

 Overall, the Acer Iconia W3-810-1600 has a lot to offer in the areas of productivity and entertainment. With the capability of running full Windows 8.1 and Office 365, I found this tablet easy to integrate into my job whether I was at home, in the office, or out and about. With web browsing, games and apps like Cut the Rope, Free Flow, Facebook Netflix, and Hulu Plus, to name a few, this tablet also worked really well for me as an entertainment device.

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