Review: Nextbook Quad-Core Windows 8.1 Tablet

When Makro announced its partnership with Microsoft to bring out the Nextbook range of tablets, we got excited! And, lucky for us, the ever-tech-minded Paul Cassells took a look at it, delving into what makes it a great choice for parents who want to purchase a tablet for their kids.

Nextbook | DigiKids

They say dynamite comes in small packages. In the case of the Nextbook 8, dynamite is here in a small but also incredibly affordable package, that makes it a really good choice for a gift!

Priced at a mere R1,499.99, this quad-core Windows 8.1 tablet (the full version of Windows 8.1, not Windows RT, thank heavens) is competing in a market already saturated with Apple & Android tablets but, in this writer’s opinion, it holds its own on price alone.

It comes with a free 1-year subscription to Office 365 Personal (Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, OneNote, & Publisher), and includes 1 terabyte of cloud storage with Microsoft OneDrive. Considering that the device also has a mini-HDMI output port, students especially would benefit from a tablet such as this, as it is ideal for PowerPoint presentations, document producing, editing, note-taking, presentations and even video conferencing.

Specifications:

  • 8″ 1280 x 800 LCD Touch Screen
  • Intel® ATOM™ Quad-Core 1.8GHZ Processor
  • 1GB DDR3L RAM
  • 16GB on-board storage
  • WIFI 802.11 b/g/n
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • Front Camera (0.3 MP) / Back camera (2.0 MP)
  • Micro HDMI
  • Micro-SD card slot for expansion to 64GB
  • 4,000mah rechargeable battery
  • Bluetooth Mouse/Keyboard support (Sold separately)

When devices cost as little as this one does, there are bound to be one or two compromises. The LCD display doesn’t have the best viewing angles, and doesn’t do too well in direct sunlight. The 16gB of onboard storage space is mostly taken up by the OS and non-removable system folders (there is about 5gB of usable storage out the box). The good news is that storage is expandable by using an SD card, so if you are considering this device then make sure you have a 16gB or 32gB SD card in your budget as well.

Nextbook | DigiKids
Having said that, the performance of the tablet has been more than acceptable. Even with 1gB of RAM, I have yet to experience any problems multitasking. Scrolling and browsing is fluid and responsive, and streaming video like YouTube and other services is a pleasure.

At the end of the day, this tablet is really fantastic for what it is: A low-cost, mid-range fully functional lightweight Windows 8.1 tablet that can do anything a desktop PC can do. I heartily recommend this device for students, Windows geeks, or anyone looking for an affordable way to be productive and have some fun at the same time.

Cath Jenkin

As a mom, Cath raises her daughter with a strong focus on technology, as she believes that digital literacy is as important as learning to read. With a long history of creating content for online and print publications, and in particular as a parenting columnist, Cath brings her curious mind... Read more

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