Android Tablet Review: Acer Iconia Tab A500

First Thoughts

I wasn't so sure what to think of this tablet, it seemed bulkier than what I would like, or so I thought, it also had heard it wasn't built as good as it could have been and that a few other things weren't up to par, however, the price was quite a nice thing and had me questioning this one. Getting a review unit answered my questions.

The Looks

It looks really nice. It is silver and black and is 10 inches. It has Honeycomb 3.1 on it. The whole tablet is great looking. It is good to gaze upon and has a semi unique look (nothing is unique anymore). The on/off placement is a nice addition, as well as the volume rocker.

The Hardware/Screen

A Dual core, Tegra 250 Dual cortex A9, 1000 MHz processor is in here. This is great if you ask me. Tegra is quite nice in tablets. Dual core 1ghz is ever better. A usb slot is found on the site and works for various USB device and will work for more in the future, I can confirm that keyboards work. You get support for up to 64 gb with an SD card and it comes with 16 gig built-in. That is a lot for a tablet, even more considering you can load your music to the cloud with various services.

The screen is 10 inches and supports 800 x 1280 pixels. It makes for a clear looking experience on the tablet, video and images look great, so does the web.

The Battery

The battery isn't as big as some tablets, but it still can last two days depending on usage. You get a 3260 mAh battery with the Acer Iconia A500. It pumps out the energy needed to last.

The Operating System/Software

Android 3.1 came to this device recently and works great. It added a bit of support for things like resizing widgets and stability, this one needed a bit of stabilizing. By the time you are reading this, android OS 3.2 may be out on this tablet as well and you are experiencing further stability.

The Keyboard

The keyboard is something android needs to work on for tablets, it wasn't very nice at all, I am pretty sure I have said that with most tablets I have reviewed. I ended up using new swype, it is optimized for tablets. I also used swiftkey X for android tablets and that worked really well. It provides a very optimized feel. Both keyboards are better than the stock android tablet keyboard sadly.

The Browsing, Camera and Video

Browsing is quick with wifi of course. I never had any issues. Flash works along with all other great web services.

The front camera is 2MP and the rear is a 5MP, that is quite nice, it is resolution you may never need on the rear (I personally use my phone as my cameara) but it is nice if you need it.

Summary

Pros:

  • It actually is quite durable
  • The build quality is nice
  • It is receiving plenty of updates
  • It has a good price tag

Cons:

  • Sometimes the plastic bezel is a bit too plastic feeling

Conclusions & Final Thoughts

For me it is a toss-up between this and an ASUS on which to get. They are both nice (I have yet to review an Asus, my opinion could change). They both have a good price and have received updates, since I have reviewed this one I can definitely recommend it to anyone that asks and have before, even in the aisles of best buy.

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About the Author
I have had many different phones over the years and rooted them all. I write mainly write reviews about phones for the site but at times I also write about apps. I became interested in Android after the Droid 1 came out but have since used the G1, Evo 4g, and Nexus S as my own. I was one of the lucky few who bought a touchpad as well, it is now running android.
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