Vodafone Smart Tab II (7 inch) review
|Review: December 2012|
Last updated September 2013
In a nutshell: The Vodafone Smart Tab 2 is an entry-level 7 inch tablet running Android Ice Cream Sandwich and offering the benefit of 3G HSPA connectivity in addition to Wi-Fi for true portability.
The Vodafone Smart Tab 2 comes in both 7 inch and 10 inch variants, and here we're taking a look at the compact 7 incher. Although recently we've seen a growth in sales of Wi-Fi-only 7 inch tablets, the addition of 3G surely makes any 7 inch tablet's key selling point - portability - even more compelling. Add in the fact that the Smart Tab 2 costs less than Amazon's Wi-Fi-only Kindle Fire HD, and it should definitely be on your list of tablets to consider.
Design & Looks
The Smart Tab II isn't breaking any new ground when it comes to styling. It's a tablet and it looks like a tablet. Still, it's been very solidly built by Lenovo for Vodafone, with an edge-to-edge glass cover, nicely curved corners and a minimalist front face with no hardware buttons. There's a volume rocker on the right side, and a power button, micro-USB port and headphone jack on the top edge. There's only one colour option - a black front bezel with a dark grey back.
The screen measures 7 inches, with a modest resolution of 600 x 1024 pixels. This is fewer pixels than rivals like the Google Nexus 7, and we also found that the screen has relatively poor viewing angles, so the colours look washed out when viewed from the side. It's not the best tablet if you want the family to be able to crowd around and watch together - but then, no 7 inch tablet is ideal for this.
Software & apps
This is an Android tablet and it comes loaded with version 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich). Vodafone haven't customised it greatly, so it's running something very close to pure Android. The Vodafone customisations consist of a red background, a weather widget and a DLNA media sharing app.
You'll find plenty of apps pre-installed on the multiple Android home screens, including the Chrome web browser, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, email, Google+, Google Maps, Amazon Kindle and Flash player. Google Play Store gives you access to a wealth of downloadable apps, movies, books and music.
This isn't going to frighten the horses when it comes to hardware specs. With just a 1GHz single-core processor, this is modest in its capabilities. To be fair, in normal use this isn't a problem, as a 1GHz processor is perfectly adequate for zipping through the user interface and running day-to-day apps. It helps that the device has a full 1GB of RAM. Even web pages load quickly and can be scrolled around without any trouble. You might notice a lag opening up certain apps, and more demanding games might run a little slowly, but most users shouldn't have any problems.
The built-in memory is also quite small at just 4GB. However, since a microSD card slot is available, you can easily bump this up by another 32GB for hardly any additional cost.
Cameras front & back
The main camera is also very basic. With a resolution of just 2 megapixels, it's only going to be useful for quick snaps. Since most mobile phones probably have better cameras in a smaller and more convenient form, we wonder if anyone is ever going to use it.
Possibly more useful is the front-facing camera. While this has an even lower resolution - just VGA (0.3 megapixels) - it can be used for self portraits or video calls.
This is surely one of the device's strong points. With both 3G and Wi-Fi options available, this is a truly portable tablet. In addition you'll find Bluetooth and a USB port.
On the face of it, the 3550 mAh seems rather small. But when you take into account the relatively modest demands of the screen and processor, the battery life isn't too bad at all. It should certainly see you through a day at work.
Conclusion - inexpensive and portable
The Vodafone Smart Tab II is positioned right at the entry-level when it comes to pricing. At £150 on PAYG, this is one of the most affordable tablets on the market. It's also one of the most portable, having a compact 7 inch form factor and benefiting from both Wi-Fi and 3G HSPA connectivity. That gives it the edge over rivals like the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD that offer only Wi-Fi connectivity.
The Smart Tab 2 cannot compete with these devices when it comes to processing power, nor can it offer a HD screen. Nevertheless the 1GHz processor coupled with a full gigabyte of RAM is sufficient for most purposes, and the display will be perfectly adequate for many users.
The 7 inch tablet market has really moved up a gear during 2012, and the addition of the Vodafone Smart Tab II, offering 3G HSPA capability in an entry-level product is a welcome addition to the choices on offer. It feels like a good choice for business users especially.
Vodafone Smart Tab II (7 inch) features include:
- Operating system: Android ICS 4.0.4
- 7 inch multi-touch display with 600 x 1024 pixels
- Swype-enabled virtual QWERTY keyboard
- 2 megapixel back camera with video camera
- Secondary front-facing VGA camera with video calling
- Media player
- Messaging: SMS, MMS, instant messaging (Google Talk), email
- Internet: Web browser with Flash support, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter
- Processor: 1GHz MediaTek 6575 processor
- Memory: 4GB plus microSD memory card slot (up to 32GB supported)
- Connectivity: Wi-Fi (b/g/n), Bluetooth, USB 2.0, DLNA
- Triband GSM, EDGE, 3G (900, 2100MHz), HSPA
- Size: 192 x 122 x 11.5 mm
- Weight: 400g
- Battery: 3550 mAh
Got a question? This is the place to ask it!
Please don't ask a question that has already been asked. Duplicates will be removed.
How do i transfere apps etc to sd card?
Asked by Erica
on 22nd Sep 2016
Can you get a memory stick /card for a Vodafone smart tab 2?
Asked by jackie
from United Kingdom
on 26th Apr 2016
How to lower an ear volume?
Asked by lucky
from south Africa
on 30th Mar 2016
Vodafone Smart Tab II (7 inch) user reviews
Love this product? Hate it? Please share your experiences to help other people choose the product that's best for them. Please do not review this product if you have not used it, and please ask questions in our User Questions section above. Please do not use swear words or offensive language, and please, no advertising!
Average rating from 8 reviews:
Reviewed by Albert Ncachiwe
on 15th Feb 2017
I like this device....its very efficient on mobile network and even Wi-Fi.
Reviewed by Paula
on 11th Apr 2016
When I come to install an app it comes up with insufficient storage , yet I have loads of storage, and haven't added a single app , its utterly useless.
Reviewed by Abiola Farinde
on 13th Jan 2016
I am not happy with this product, I can't recharge my network line direct, I can't even buy data direct, I always remove my sim card to another phone to recharge my line its so bad.
Reviewed by Tshepiso Molapong
on 15th Dec 2015
My vodafone tab is always on loud speaker.. even when i press thescreen to enable the loud speaker it doesnt respond.. please help.my email adress is email@example.com
Reviewed by annonymous
from South Africa
on 8th Mar 2015
Mine is just perfect :) love my smart tab 3G..only problem I hav with mine is that phone calls are on speaker can't have any private calls :( but its still awesome
Reviewed by fanna
from south africa
on 2nd Dec 2014
I hate it because u can't even make a phone call the only thing that is better with this tablet is its quiker on the internet but please if any one know about how to make a phone call or I must download an app before I can use it let me know
Reviewed by JO
on 25th Mar 2014
Hate it, camera is just useless, you can forget about photos or watching movie
Reviewed by Bolias Andreas
on 4th Mar 2014
There are problems in appearance between vertical and horizontal . stays in the vertical direction while from settings I have press the Auto orientation .