Motorola’s first Xoom was one of the first Android 3.0 “Honeycomb” tablets hitting the marketplace this past year, but it is disappointing to determine the new Xoom 2 doesn’t provide a taste of Android 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwich”. The Xoom 2 includes Android 3.2.2 pre-installed. The initial Xoom included 3.0 but Telstra makes the three.2 upgrade available. Both models should support ICS as well as an official update is originating later this season, although it’s already readily available for some US models. If you are pleased to take matters to your own hands you can root a Xoom and check out ICS now.
Considering they’re both running versions of Honeycomb, today I’m mostly likely to concentrate on the hardware differences using the new Xoom 2. The 32GB Xoom 2 can be obtained from Telstra for $720 outright ($120 less expensive than last year’s Xoom), or on plans beginning with $49 monthly with 1GB of mobile data. Unlike a number of its competitors, there is no cheaper Wi-Fi only model.
Such as the original Xoom, the brand new model supports 802.11n at 5GHz — that is handy in you’re managing a dual-band Wi-Fi network to reduce on congestion and interference. For special broadband there is no LTE, but you will find quad-band HSDPA supporting 14.4 Mbps down and 5.76 Mbps up.
When it comes to design, the slender new Xoom 2 has shed 127 gm (right down to 603 gm) and slimmed down by almost another to eight.8 mm. The modification is nearly just like that between your third and fourth iPads, meaning the Xoom 2 is all about comparable to the apple ipad 2. As a result this new Xoom is a little more petite compared to new third-generation iPad.
The Xoom 2 has additionally undergone a makeover, with tapered edges and black matte styling (rather than shiny silver) contributing to the slimming effect. The alterations certainly help you to grip and much more comfortable to keep. Motorola has actually downgraded the leading webcam from 2MP to at least one.3MP, that is disappointing although not necessarily a deal-breaker.
The redesign can also be apparent whenever you flip the Xoom 2 on its back. The ability button has moved in the top corner towards the edge, that makes it more readily found together with your right-hand when holding it in panoramic mode. The amount buttons are beneath it and therefore are considerably bigger than those found on the initial Xoom. The trunk camera has additionally gone to live in the centre at the very top, as the speakers are higher to lessen the likelihood of you accidentally covering all of them with both hands.
Theoretically these changes should result in the Xoom 2 more user-friendly, however the buttons really are a little too recessed for my liking and may be awkward to discover and push. It might grow you however i thought it was too simple to accidentally hit the incorrect button. It must be simpler to separate them by touch.
One of the greatest criticisms of Motorola’s original Xoom was its size. It had been widely panned to be overweight and bulky, had an oddly placed power/lock button and was uncomfortable to keep for very long periods. Motorola has clearly paid attention to these issues because the Xoom 2 is both thinner (8.8mm) and lighter (599g) than its predecessor. It is then relatively comfortable to keep with two hands, however the wide form factor means the Xoom 2 stills seem like a chore to keep single-handedly.
Keep looking and you will find more goodness as a micro-SD slot alongside a micro-SIM slot (hidden within rubber flap at the base edge). This can be a relief thinking about the early 16GB Xoom 2 units observed in the united states lacked a micro-SD slot. Even if the initial Xoom first shipped its micro-SD slot and USB host features were disabled. The Xoom II’s micro-SD slot calculates from the box also it supports USB host features with an On the run adaptor cable (however i couldn’t test drive it because an OTG cable isn’t contained in the box). The possible lack of a full-sized USB host port will disappoint many people. Thankfully the change to a micro-SIM card means now you can access the micro-SD slot with no need to take away the Sim.
The Xoom 2 has yet another trick up its sleeve, a built-in infrared port on top edge in panoramic mode (near the headphone jack). While using supplied Dijit software you are able to turn named right into a programmable universal remote much like a Logitech Harmony.
With regards to the screen the Xoom 2 still sports a ten.1-inch 1280×800 display, but it is now an IPS panel with scratch-resistance Gorilla Glass. The brand new display is slightly brighter, provides more vibrant colours than its predecessor and far wider viewing angles. The downside would be that the shirt is warmer, therefore the whites aren’t as white as around the original Xoom.
Underneath the bonnet the processor continues to be bumped up from the 1 GHz dual-core to some 1.2GHz dual-core, still combined with 1GB of RAM. The additional grunt is noticeable although not striking in daily tasks, with complicated webpages loading a rather faster and also the interface auto-rotating just a little quicker. Still it feels sluggish sometimes. More demanding activities for example graphic-intensive racing games and also the ABC’s Flash-powered iView often showcase the additional grunt of the processor upgrade, but it is hardly noticeable when running the Xoom and Xoom 2 alongside.
To tell the truth the Xoom 2 feels as though an immediate reaction to the Apple ipad 2 (DVD to iPad 2), that is understandable thinking about the iPad still dominates named space. Unfortunately for Motorola the Xoom 2 continues to be overshadowed not just by the launch from the apple ipad 3 but additionally through the launch of Frozen treats Sandwich Android tablets packing quad-core processors. So whether you’re an Android or iGadget fan, there are more tablets for prone to blow you away.
Motorola claims the Xoom 2 (dvd to xoom 2) includes a life of the battery close to 10 hours however the figure you accomplish is determined by your usage patterns. Normally, we were able to drain battery within six with heavy use. This imply Motorola’s figure is quite inflated, however with moderate make use of the Xoom 2 should really push nearer to a far more respectable eight hours. Unlike the initial Xoom, which used an AC adapter port for charging, the Xoom 2 uses the standard micro-USB port instead.