Wikipad Mini

Close Up: The Wikipad 7-Inch

April 2, 2013 - Written By Briley Kenney

The Wikipad changed sizes almost instantly, dropping from a projected 10 inches down to a more appropriate 7 inches. As the size went down, so did the price yet I would argue not enough to make the tablet desirable.

A 10-inch version of the Wikipad is still coming though, but much later and hopefully it will also see some needed hardware upgrades. The 7-inch Wikipad is powered by a Tegra 3 quad-core SoC processor, which is pretty much outdated by now.

The 7-inch Wikipad is also equipped with the following:

  • Tegra 3 quad-core
  • 1280 x 800 IPS display
  • Full size gamepad (12 buttons total)
  • MicroSD expansion slot
  • Jelly Bean 4.1

If the Wikipad was just a tablet, then it probably wouldn’t have much of a chance in today’s market. Realistically, it still might be overlooked by consumers. The device’s saving grace is the combined 12 button gamepad, that allows you to play Android games with a standard controller, instead of sloppy touchscreen controls.

The folks over at Engadget seem to think you should keep your money and spend it on something better. They  got a chance to try it out at the Game Developer’s Conference last week.

After using it, they described the Wikipad as “awkward” and accident-prone. Primarily because the device seemed too bulky which makes it difficult to grasp tightly. If you can’t grasp something very well while you’re jabbing at buttons, it’s likely you’ll drop it eventually. Seeing as they don’t make Otterboxes to fit the Wikipad 7-inch, you’d probably have quite the mess on your hands if you dropped it.

I’d love to get my hands on the Wikipad, just to at least give it a try. I’ve played around with the similar Archos Gamepad, and I was totally smitten.

Personally, I’ll choose standard gamepad controls over touch controls any day. I hate using a virtual joystick to move, and I seriously hate that such joysticks take up a large part of the screen, even if it is just the bottom corner.

What are your thoughts on the Wikipad? Are you planning on buying one as soon as they become available?