Probably one of the most anticipated Android devices to hit the market, is the Motorola Xoom. The device first showed it’s shiny case back in December when Andy Rubin showed us the first few looks for the Android 3.0 OS and how this would portray a new era in tablet design from Google.
So finally it’s out in the wild and running rampant so I decided taking a quick look at the Motorola Xoom in this short review. First of all it’s the world’s first Android tablet sporting Android 3.0 Honeycomb so let’s see how it works out in the end product. To get some of the specs for the Xoom down, you’ll know by now that it’s being powered by the NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor which is clocked at 1 GHz per core. Memory wise the Motorola Xoom is coming with 1 GB of DDR 2 RAM and 32 GB of internal storage which can be extended via a micro SD card which would mean you’d get up to 64 GB of storage for this little tablet.
The display of the Motorola Xoom is a 10.1 inch capacitive display, sporting a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels. Considering all the specs of the device you have here a very high quality tablet. High build quality is something I’ve come to expect from Motorola given that all of their smartphones just feel good in the hand and just have a rugged kind of look about them, an industrial look and feel if you want. A good example in this aspect is the Motorola Milestone series or even the Motorola Defy. The only issue which comes to mind when playing around with the Motorola Xoom is the way the tablet looks overall. It’s not that it doesn’t look good, because it sure does, the only problem being mostly that it kind of looks just like a longer version of the iPad but considering that tablets need to adhere to some design etiquette I think that’s acceptable.
Motorola’s Xoom real innovation should actually be coming from the fact that it’s the first tablet out to be running Android 3.0 Honeycomb, but I can’t shake the feeling of running an operating system which was rushed maybe just a touch. Maybe because of the upcoming announcements regarding the iPad 2, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and LG’s Optimus Tab, but certain elements feel a touch unfinished just yet. The way Android 3.0 feels though really makes a difference from you standard Android 2.2 Froyo tablet because it does function quite differently in a lot of ways. The general user interface has a cold feel to it, yet it still manages to capture some of the levels of details which you might encounter in the iOS. Considering the specs and the fact that Honeycomb was developed on the Motorola Xoom, the device does really go through home screens like it’s no one’s business, as there was no lag while browsing through the menus and different applications.
Android 3.0 Honeycomb has a small disadvantage though when compared to the earlier versions, as there are just a few applications developed with it in mind. The music player, YouTube and a few other apps look and work great on Honeycomb but certain applications just feel like being stretched version of their Android 2.1 or 2.2 counterparts. Despite these small drawbacks, and I do feel that this issue will be quickly addressed in the near future, the device can easily run any app. There was no lag when pinch-to-zoom on a webpage, load time was very reduced and swapping between tabs is quick and seamless. There’s an overall feel of using a desktop workstation rather than using a tablet. For the ladies out there interested maybe in buying an Android tablet, you might consider waiting maybe a touch because there is the issue of the weight, as the Motorola Xoom does weigh in at roughly 1.5 pounds so you might find yourself getting seriously tired after a longer usage period.
Motorola Xoom is the world’s first Android 3.0 Honeycomb powered tablet, and there obviously are minor issues which have popped up, but considering the build quality, the fact that Motorola and Google are very dedicated to updating and improving their products, we will see those issues dwindle in a few months as well. There is nothing which would be a dealbreaker really within the tablet, but if you mind the small issues with the platform, you might want to hold out to get a HTC Flyer or a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1. Until next time, I’ll be busy cleaning the smudges of this little thing.1