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Tablet wars: Xolo Play Tegra Note vs Acer Iconia W4 vs Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 vs Dell Venue 8

Tablet wars: Xolo Play Tegra Note vs Acer Iconia W4 vs Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 vs Dell Venue 8
We pit four of the latest tablets against each other to help you find the device that’s just right for you.

We pit four of the latest tablets against each other in this final instalment of our two-part series to help you find the device that's just right for you.

Xolo Play Tegra Note 

Best for 3D gaming and high-def movies

The Tegra Note sports an all-plastic build, but its back panel has a rubberised finish that makes for decent grip. Powered by Nvidia's chip, this tab shows no signs of lag while playing heavy 3D games like Real Racing 3 and Frontline Commando. Its front-facing stereo speakers, however, are placed on the side of its touchscreen, and holding the tablet horizontally blocks these and muffles its sound. This tab comes with a micro-HDMI port, which works well for when you want to watch a movie on a large display. The Tegra Note's display looks bright, but its colours are rather subdued. Its marker-type stylus is responsive and even pressure sensitive. Unlike the well-supported S Pen in the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (see previous issue), this tab comes with just two apps for drawing and writing.

The camera works well in bright settings and come preinstalled with the Camera Awesome app that lets you choose from various shooting modes and creative effects. Its low-res VGA front cam doesn't make for clear and crisp video chats.

The slate gave us a decent six hours of non-stop movie time.

Specs: 7-inch, IPS (1280x800px) touchscreen | 1.8GHz quad-core processor | 1GB RAM | 16GB (internal), microSD up to 32GB | 5MP rear cam, VGA front cam | Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, A-GPS, micro-HDMI | 4100mAh | Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean)

Acer Iconia W4

Best for those who want the familiarity of the Windows user interface

This Windows tablet comes with a bright touchscreen with great viewing angles; colours look rich and vibrant. However, in the Windows desktop mode, icons and text appear really small and tend to be a pain to select and edit. This is not the case while navigating the tiled interface. Powered by an Intel Atom quad-core chip, the W4 handles 3D games and Full HD movies without a stutter - and it even features a micro HDMI port.

The W4, like all Windows-based devices, is able to play only popular file formats like WMA, MP3, WAV and AVI. For additional support, you will need to install third-party media players.

The slate also comes with USB OTG support, so you can plug in a pen drive and transfer files directly. In fact, you can also use your data dongles with the tablet.

The W4 comes pre-loaded with Acer's cloud storage services as well as Microsoft's Office Home and Student 2013 productivity suite. Besides, you also get tight integration with OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) that allows you to save documents to your online account without a fuss.

The rear camera produces shots that lack detail due to image compression. The front cam works decently for video chat, but only in well-lit environments.

The W4 gave us a commendable six hours of continuous video playback on a single charge.

Specs: 8-inch, LCD (1280x800px) touchscreen | 1.3GHz quad-core processor | 2GB RAM | 64GB (internal), microSD up to 32GB | 5MP rear cam, 2MP front cam | W-Fi, Bluetooth, micro-HDMI | 4960mAh battery | Windows 8.1

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 

Best for those who want to stay connected while on-the-move
The Lenovo Yoga 8 sports a cylindrical receptacle that houses its battery. This also makes it comfortable to grip when browsing the web or reading. Besides, it also comprises a metallic kickstand which is great for hands-free entertainment and video chats.

Even though its 8-inch screen sports an HD resolution, its low pixel density affects its display quality. Images look grainy and colours seem oversaturated, and this mars the visual experience.

Overall, the device works well for basic browsing and productivity tasks, but it struggles with highquality Full HD videos and 3D games. Also, its frontfacing stereo speakers sound muffled, so it's better to use earphones for movies and music. The Yoga's rear camera is inconveniently placed in the corner where you are likely to place your hand while taking landscape shots. Its output, like most tabs in this range, lack detail and are only good enough for sharing on the web. Its front cam works well for video chats.

However, with voice calling, 3G support and a good battery life of eight hours on continuous video, this tab is a worthy travel companion.

Specs: 8-inch, IPS (1280x800px) touchscreen | 1.2GHz quad-core processor | 1GB RAM | 16GB (internal), microSD up to 64GB | 5MP rear cam, 1.6MP front cam | 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, A-GPS | 6000mAh battery | Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean)

Best for those who need a budget 8-incher

This Intel Atom-powered slate sports a sturdy build and a rubberized back for much-needed grip. Its HD display is bright and is capable of natural colours, but readability, takes a dip in sunlight. Also - despite its hi-res credentials - its images don't look sharp. This, however, is more of a norm in tabs priced under 20k.
The Venue 8's stock Android installation ensures a lag-free experience and PocketCloud - the only pre-loaded app on this device - works well to let you access documents from a remote PC that's connected to the internet. But without 3G support, you are restricted to using it with Wi-Fi only.
Pictures taken with the rear camera are not sharp; low-light captures include a great deal of noise. The front snapper works well for video calls, provided there is enough light.
As for multimedia, the slate handles Full HD movies and light gaming without a hiccup. Its speaker is loud, but tends to distort at higher volumes.
Battery life is dismal, and a full charge gave us only four hours of video playback.
Specs: 8-inch, IPS (1280x800px) touchscreen | 2GHz dual-core processor | 2GB RAM | 16GB (internal), microSD up to 32GB | 5MP rear cam, 2MP front cam | Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, A-GPS | 4100mAh battery | Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean)

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