Review: Lenovo IdeaPad K1 Android Tablet

Lenovo IdeaPad K1 PackageLenovo was surely a little late in entering the already saturated Android Tablet Market. But they have come up with the IdeaPad K1 which is sure to have a fan following simply for the brand Lenovo. We got to review the IdeaPad K1, which is thickly designed and sits ‘heavily’ in the middle of numerous other tablets.

Hardware, Looks:

The IdeaPad K1 comes in three colors(black, red and white). We got to review the black version. Featuring a 10.1 inch touch screen display, the design of IdeaPad K1 could have been better(less thicker). The IdeaPad K1 has a unique Home Screen Button unlike any other Android Tablet. Obviously it was placed with a few cool tweaks in mind. When you Press and hold the Home button along with the volume down button, you end up capturing an image of the current screen. It can also be used as a return key when swiped downwards. Can’t be bragged much, but still a handy feature. The body is made of matte aluminium and there’s a panel on the back which distinguishes this tablet from others.

On the left side, you will find the ports as usual – the power button, volume control, a screen rotation locker and a microSD Card Slot. At the bottom, you have the 3.5 mm Headphone Jack and a micro-HDMI Socket. The make of these buttons could have been better, as it feels a little flimsy for the money that we spend.

The IdeaPad K1 is powered by an ARM Cortex A9 1GHz dual core processor and 1GB of RAM. It comes with Android 3.1 Honeycomb preloaded. The 10.1-inch touch display has a resolution of 1280×800 pixels.

Software: Honeycomb Interface

IdeaPad K1 HomescreenGoogle admitted earlier that its Honeycomb 3.x versions are unfinished in a way and may not produce the best results from your hardware. Lenovo has made sure nothing is fallen apart in the OS side. It has customized the Honeycomb to add a few pre-loaded apps(more than 30). A widget grid consisting of four apps can also be customized. There are plenty of shortcuts to various tasks, including Lenovo Shop, List of Recently used Applications etc. The Lenovo Launcher dashboard is editable.

The Honeycomb Web Browser is in the center of this Dashboard. The App Wheel at the bottom cannot be customized. This is kinda redundant as you already have Menus for Apps. While multi-tasking can be good, it can take up a lot of system resources. Lenovo has made sure it has included the Close button for the Apps to Kill Tasks and save some precious resources. With Ice-Cream Sandwich 4.0, the tablet will make the best use of its features. Hope Lenovo makes it quick to get it on the Tablet.

IdeaPad K1 CablesIdeaPad K1 Backside

Multimedia, Apps:
The IdeaPad K1 comes with a 5 MP Camera at the back and a 2 MP Camera at the front. But as with any other tablets, the camera performance cannot be bragged about much. The Video Recording at 720p does a decent job. The Video playback was surprisingly good at 720p. However when you try to play 1080p HD videos, there are certain lags. The Dual Core processor ensured that playback was smooth in most cases.

The Audio output was not desirable. The in-built speakers just gives low volume output. I don’t want to criticize much about this as its not worse when compared to many other tablets or even some laptops. Connect to external speakers if you really want to enjoy true multimedia experience. [This applies to all tablets and laptops.]

There are two pre-loaded apps for Music Playback. With Android MarketPlace, you can get many apps for your Multimedia Playback of different formats.

The ArcSync app allows 5 GB of Free Cloud Storage. There are lots of games bundled as well like the Need for Speed Shift HD(Trial Version) and some full version games as well. Talking Tom was our favorite app. As always, you can browse through the Android MarketPlace to get more apps or the Lenovo AppShop which categorizes apps specifically for your tablet.

IdeaPad K1 Web BrowsingPerformance & Battery Life:

The performance of the tablet is pretty good. Apart from occasional lags which you get with any Android Tablet, the IdeaPad K1 did well in Web Browsing, Video Playback and casual gaming. The viewing angles were actually impressive as you might even get away watching a movie from the side angle, despite having the glare on screen.

The tablet gets heated up more when compared to other tablets. The resolution of the screen makes viewing clear and crispy. Battery life, though not the best around, gives you fair amount of standby only if the Location Services and Wi-Fi are turned off. Overall, its no way near to the iPad or the Galaxy Tab.

Final Verdict:

The IdeaPad K1 packs in a pretty good hardware, bundled apps and a decent battery life. But with the tablet being heavier to handle and a very fair sound quality, people might be interested in going to the Galaxy Tab. If you want a more cheaper option, go for the ASUS Transformer Prime. The Lenovo IdeaPad gives you more Storage for less money and the choice is left to you. 🙂 At INR 31,990, the IdeaPad K1 is surely a good tablet but not the best of the lot.

Ratings: 3.5/5

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