Cherry Mobile is now offering low cost manufactured tablets. Cherry Mobile is selling the Ainol Novo 7 Paladin and Ainol Novo 7 Advance II, as the Cherry Pad Paladin and Cherry Pad Advance.
|Ainol Novo 7 Paladin
The Paladin is the cheaper of the two offerings at Php4,999. It comes with a 7-inch capacitive touchscreen display with a WVGA (480 x 800) resolution. For those of you who have tried the cheap "China" tablets and were not happy with the touch experience, the resistive displays in those units were really designed for use with a stylus. So, while the Paladin is a China tablet, I think it is important to distinguish it from what the term usually connotes.
The WVGA resolution on a 7-inch tablet is not all that sharp, but it is functional. It has a single core 1 GHz processor and a 3D capable GPU backed up by 512 MB of RAM. The specifications are not all that impressive, but it is enough to run Android 4.0, Ice Cream Sandwich and support Adobe Flash in the browser, all at the budget price of Php4,999.
For storage it has 8 GB of internal storage and a card slot that supports up to 16 GB micro SD Cards. Connectivity is provided via WiFi, and a USB slot an HDMI port. Yup, you can plug this budget tablet directly into your LCD TV.
The Paladin also has access to the Android Market (now Google Play).
The Paladin does support 1080p video playback, but playback is not always seamlessly smooth. 720p playback has no issue. The Paladin does not also have a camera, so video chatting is not it strong suit.
And that is where the Advance comes in. At Php5,999 the Advance specifications are similar to Paladin, but it comes with more powerful Mali-400 graphics which takes care of any 1080p playback issues. Yup, the same chip you find on high end Samsung mobile phones like the Galaxy S II. It also comes with a front camera.
Is interesting as these two are, adding another Php1,000 or should get you a Ainol Novo 7 Elf or Aurora with their higher resolution 600 x 1024 displays and 1 GB of RAM.
Okay. Who does this benefit. Ainol has already been offering a official warranty for its devices but most of its resellers don't. By entering into an agreement with Cherry Mobile, it can take advantage of CM's marketing and retail presence. For Cherry Mobile, it gives them a nice low cost tablet to offer. Buying one from Cherry Mobile wont cost you more than getting a similar one on the grey market. Looks like a win-win for both, and for the consumer too.
While some may scoff at these low cost offerings, these tablets serve an important place in the developing world. Android in conjunction with hardware manufacturers willing to bring down manufacturing costs, are making computers accessible to persons who could not hope to buy one just two shorts years ago.