Ryan Thomason

My couple of weeks with an ASUS MeMO Pad 7

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It’s not very often I get a shiny new toy sent to me to review here on WPR. Well, we get plenty of shiny things, but this is probably the more versatile of shiny things we get.

Lets talk Price: I’m including this first, because for most families here in the states, price is always an issue no matter what bells and whistles come attached. The Asus MeMo Pad 7 is pretty easy to compare against a Galaxy Nexus 7. Since I personally own a Nexus 7 I’ll say that besides a few basic apps hardwired in, both the Android running devices perform rather similarly. The ASUS MeMO Pad 7 does clobber the Nexus 7 with a $149 price point to the Galaxy’s $229. (prices may vary by retailers) That’s something to keep in mind when you’re figuring out how to spend your extra tuition money this semester.

Here are some of the basic specs:

  • Android™ 4.1 Jelly Bean
  • 7 ’’ display with 10-finger mult-touch (1024×600, 169 PPI)
  • 7 hours of battery life
  • 358g light and 11.2mm thin with colorful design
  • Front HD camera to stay connected with online chatting
  • Micro-SD slot with support for up to 32GB extra storage
  • ASUS WebStorage to view, edit and save Microsoft Office files online

My thoughts: I actually had fun playing around with this for the past week. My kids? Pretty much even more than I did. But, that’s what happens when you put on a couple of kids games and let them have at it. My first real issue was heat, if you’re playing a game or watching something like Game of Thrones, you’ll find that it does get hot, not burning your house down hot, but hot enough that you have to turn it off out of fear that you’re going to melt some internal components. The ASUS MeMO Pad is no different that any other device like this though, everyone has heat issues, it’s just a matter of what your tolerance level is. I let this thing run extra long on some tests and it still performed admirably. The battery life on this thing was phenomenal, I had been leaving it on and just picking it up and playing around, or telling my kids to. The performance level on the battery kept it great for if you were going to be say, on an extended car ride or family trip and you wanted something to keep the backseat monsters entertained.

ASUS loaded the MeMO Pad 7 with its own suite of apps, such as the Do It Later to-do list, Galley, Music, File Manager, Clock, Splendid, Audio Wizard, What’s Next, Weather and ASUS Web Storage.

I really appreciated File Manager for organizing data stored locally, on the micro SD card, and across multiple cloud services, including Google Drive, Dropbox, ASUS Web Storage and more. Asus sweetens the deal by providing 500 GB free storage for two years. I didn’t use it much, but if this were my new device I would appreciate more the What’s Next for automatically pulling data from your contacts and calendars to remind you of upcoming events right on the front screen, even in standby mode so you can just glance at the screen without having to swipe in.

The ASUS MeMO Pad 7 features a 2-megapixel rear camera and a 0.3-MP front camera. While some of the imaging software was fun for making .gifs and such, the camera was a little lacking for me. Then again, I don’t buy tablets for cameras. Having a video chat went alright though, by all means it’s functional and gets the job done. You don’t need to be transmitting yourself in crystal clear HD to everyone unless you’re recording it for videos. In which case, I’d tell you to buy a video camera for that purpose.

Final Thoughts: I actually enjoyed the MeMO Pad quite a bit. It was versatile, ran smoothly, and I could watch three episodes of Game of Thrones without having to plug in the charger. Aside from the common problem of heat issues, for the $149 price point, you get a tablet that while isn’t specifically pretty, it packs just as much punch as a mid to top tier tablet. It really comes down to how you are going to be using the device. If you’re a college or high school kid on a budget and want to add some portablily and basic functionality to your day. This is a decent purchase. There is even a note taking app that works pretty nicely with a stylus. So, if you’re trying to digitize your work so that it’s portable across many devices (or you’re nice enough to send a friend your class notes because they were hungover) I can see where this would have been something I would have purchased in college.

Full Disclosure: I was give an ASUS MeMO Pad 7 for review purposes and the opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own.

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