In the world of tablets, many of us think of a 10-inch tablet as being almost too big for certain things. While there are some 12-inch tablets out there like the Samsung Galaxy TabPRO 12.2 and the Galaxy NotePRO 12.2, there are also even bigger tablets available. That’s where the Lenovo N308 comes in. It’s a 19.5-inch tablet, yes I said “19.5-inch” and “tablet” in the same sentence. It’s a pretty large tablet, basically used as an Android-powered monitor. I’ve been using the Lenovo N308 for about a week now, and yes it’s made my desk pretty crammed since I already have a 24-inch monitor on there, it’s actually a pretty nice tablet. Now the Lenovo N308 isn’t the highest specced tablet out there, but for a price tag of $350, I think it’s quite good for its price.
As far as specs go, we’re looking at a 19.5-inch 1600×900 resolution display which is an IPS panel, NVIDIA Tegra 4 processor, 2GB of RAM, 8GB of flash memory and a 320GB hard disk drive inside along with a microSD card slot for even more storage. It also sports 3 USB 2.0 ports, and an ethernet port. As well as your typical charging port, that isn’t all that typical. The battery life is pretty bad for a tablet, only about 3 hours, but I don’t see anyone really carrying this around, since it is 10.1-pounds. So battery life isn’t too bad in my opinion. It does also support WiFi 802.11 b/g/n as well as Bluetooth 4.0.
As expected from Lenovo the hardware on the N308 All-In-One is actually really good. While the N308 is built more like a monitor, it’s still a nice piece of technology. On the back, towards the top you’ve got your power button and volume switcher. There’s also a Vesa mount back there so if you wanted to, you could mount it to the wall or your desk. There’s also a fold-out stand on the back, so you can lay the N308 flat or have it standing up, and it’s very stable. It has rubber feet on the bottom of the stand as well as the tablet. Making it tough for it to move without you wanting it to move. On the left side are all your ports – as we mentioned above – which include 3 USB 2.0 ports, a headphone jack, microSD card slot, ethernet, and power supply. With nothing on the right side. As expected, Lenovo has opted for on-screen keys on the N308 and have stuck with a rather Stock Android interface, of course we’ll go more in detail in the software section.
Lenovo has also added in their own wireless keyboard and mouse, because well this is basically a monitor and not a tablet. I have to say the on-screen keyboard is huge. Imagine using Swiftkey on a 19-inch monitor, pretty fun. There is a 720p HD Webcam on the front, but nothing on the back as far as camera’s go. I’d hate to hold this tablet to take a picture.
As far as performance goes for the Lenovo N308, it’s pretty good actually. I mean it does have a Tegra 4 processor and 2GB of RAM, which are pretty good specs, especially compared to some other Lenovo tablets we’ve seen lately. I was able to run games without any issues, as expected since the Tegra 4 is made for gaming, and also able to run plenty of apps without running out of RAM, which is also a good thing.
The Lenovo N308 is running on the NVIDIA Tegra 4 processor, which isn’t the latest from NVIDIA, but it’s still a great processor. However, it does have an amazing GPU inside, since NVIDIA is known for their GPU’s we expected nothing less than what we got with this GPU.
As we stated earlier, the software on here is Android 4.2.2 along with a pretty light skin from Lenovo. Unfortunately it is still running Jelly Bean. Hopefully it’ll get an update to Android 4.4 – KitKat in the near future, but there’s no word on that update just yet. As far as usability goes for the software on the N308, it’s really nothing different than using a Nexus 7, just a lot bigger. The lock screen is the same, home screen is the same, just about everything is the same. Which is unfortunate, as I wish Lenovo did more for the experience on the N308, making it a bit easier to use.
Now onto the apps, there are a few apps pre-installed but nothing to crazy. However I did notice that a lot of apps were not compatible with the Lenovo N308. Now I’m not sure if it’s because of the size of the display, or the resolution – as it is a bit weird being 1600×900, I don’t think there’s any other Android device with that resolution. But apps like NCAA March Madness were not compatible with the Lenovo N308 according to the Play Store, there were a few others as well. Which was kind of sad.
This is definitely not a portable tablet. Not only is it a 19.5-incher, but it’s also about 10 pounds. I wouldn’t want to be carrying this everywhere. The Lenovo N308, is a good tablet for having in the kitchen or even at work. In the kitchen you could use it to look up recipes, control Chromecast, etc. And at work you could use it as a second monitor basically, that runs Android. I know everyone’s work situation is different, but I’d use it to watch Netflix while I’m working.
I want to love the N308, as I really like the idea of it, but I think it needs a bit more functionality. However, for $350 I think it’s a pretty good deal, hopefully developers can update their apps to be compatible with the N308, because I’d love to sit this on my desk and watch the NCAA Tournament from it while I work. Dream come true, right? I’d recommend this for the kitchen, where you could look up recipes and such, and even watch Netflix from it, if you don’t have a TV in the kitchen, but it definitely isn’t for everyone.