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Kogan Agora ICS tablet review

How does Ice Cream Sandwich taste in a bargain tablet?

Our Verdict

Product features

  • Screen Resolution : 1024 x 768
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 2 Megapixel

View full specification

For

  • Bargain price
  • Decent screen
  • Abundance of connections
  • Ice Cream Sandwich

Against

  • Poor battery life
  • Average processing power
  • Debatable build quality

From a purely spec perspective, the 1024 x 768 IPS display seems like a fantastic addition to a AUD$200 tablet. Switched on though, the screen seems dull unless you've dialled the brightness up to maximum.

On the upside, viewing angles are good, images are sharp and colours are pretty accurate.Unsurprisingly, the resolution doesn't come close to the high-end Retina Display of the iPad though, so while images are sharp, you can still see some jaggedness if you get up nice and close.

The screen may support 10-point multitouch on paper, but in practice it feels sluggish and unresponsive. Truth be told, that could have a lot to do with the ARMv7 processor running things, but the end result is like a hungover soldier, following commands at its own pace instead of when you shout your orders at it.

Interface

Kogan is renowned for its passion of Google products, so it's no surprise that it has opted for the most vanilla of vanilla Ice Cream Sandwich builds. Fortunately, vanilla is delicious, so using it feels natural and tasty.

The lock screen offers a simple combination of time, important messages (like "Connect your charger" when the juice is running low), a battery and Wi-Fi indicator and the ICS unlock mechanism, which lets you quickly access open applications depending on which way you swipe the lock.

Unlocked, the customisable home screen maintains the dedicated soft buttons of Home, Back, Open Apps, Volume controls and Menu across the bottom, while access to your app collection is located in the top right of the screen. The top left features a shortcut to Google search, either through typing or using your voice.

The tablet's 1GHz ARMv7 processor appears to be the device's Achilles heel. Despite the 1GHz clock speed, the 1GB of RAM and the 400MHz GPU, the Agora is sluggish.

There's a very clear delay in responsiveness in almost everything you do on this tablet, from typing on the keyboard to swiping between home pages. It can literally take seconds for the typing on screen to catch up to what your fingers are doing on the on-screen keyboard.

Opening apps takes half a second to start. Frame rates in games like Angry Birds and Fruit Ninja can only be described as poor, seriously impeding any enjoyment of the games. Which is itself perhaps the most disappointing aspect given the price point sort of lends itself as a gaming tablet.

High definition video is refreshingly watchable, given the disappointments on the gaming front, although it does depend on your video player. With plenty of detail, the screen isn't perfect with fast motion, but doesn't judder too much, while images are crisp and clear.

Tech Specs

Product TypeTablet
Flash Memory Capacity16 GB
Processor ManufacturerARM
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeNo
Maximum Battery Run Time8 Hour
HDMIYes
Product FamilyAgora
Front Camera/WebcamYes
Operating System PlatformAndroid
Operating SystemAndroid 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
Brand NameKogan
Form FactorSlate
Processor Speed1 GHz
Screen Size25.4 cm (10")
Screen Resolution1024 x 768
Standard Memory1 GB
Weight (Approximate)545 g
Memory Card ReaderYes
TouchscreenYes
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
Display Screen TechnologyIn-plane Switching (IPS) Technology
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11b/g/n
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution2 Megapixel
Height9.8 mm
Width243 mm
Depth190 mm
Screen ModeXGA
ManufacturerKogan Technologies UK Pty, Ltd
Product ModelKUTBL10A16D
Product NameAgora 10" 16GB Tablet
Product LineAgora
Aspect Ratio4:3
Manufacturer Part NumberKUTBL10A16D
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.kogan.co.uk
Marketing InformationThe Kogan Agora 10" Tablet PC is perfect for anyone who wants to experience Android on a large, bright, and responsive multi-touch screen with illuminated soft-keys, while maintaining the portability thousands of happy customers have loved in the Kogan Agora Tablet Series.

A range of inputs, outputs and connection options, as well as access to thousands of apps & games Google Play make this a great entertainment and productivity device. Want a larger on-screen keyboard? This is your tablet!
Package Contents
  • Agora 10" 16GB Tablet
  • AC Adapter
  • Power Cable
  • Micro USB Cable
  • Micro USB to USB adapter
Limited Warranty1 Year