Disgo’s latest Android 4.0 tablet
packs in an impressive 9.7" display and has a budget price tag. It both
pleases and annoys in equal measure
Press down onto the screen and it ‘bleeds’.
You'll need to use with care and keep the device in a case when moving it
around with you
For a budget tablet the aluminium back
plate is a nice build feature
There are two cameras but both are low spec
and laggy to the extent that you won’t want to use them
There are so many budget Android tablets
around these days that it can be difficult to sort out the ones that are worth
your attention from those that aren’t. And when you see someone offering
Android 4.0, a 9.7-inch screen, 1.2GHz processor and 16GB of built-in storage
all for $271.98, you might feel justified in asking if you are dreaming. OK,
the smaller Nexus 7 is $318.4 for its 16GB version and $254.4 for the 8GB one,
but does anyone else compete with this? Disgo wants its Tablet 9104 to do just
So what gives? Well the build is certainly
better than we’re used to in low-priced tablets. The aluminium back plate lends
a real feeling of solidity, toughness and general quality to the chassis,
although it is nowhere near as well made as high-end tablets such as the iPad
or Galaxy Tab, nor as stylish to look at.
The ports are all ranged along one edge,
which doesn’t look too great but at least you’ll always know where they are.
The connectors include a small pin mains power jack. It will also charge over
USB, but the connector is mini USB. Your standard micro USB charger will not
suffice in this case.
There's a HDMI connector, which is nice to see
on a low cost tablet. Attach a cable to your TV and you can output your movies
to the big screen
Bright and sharp
For a budget tablet the screen is
surprisingly vibrant and sharp, matching the quality we’ve seen from the iPad 2
The battery is charged via mini USB (not
micro), or a round pin connector
Battery life is quite poor. Disgo says you
will get up to five hours from it. That depends on how you thrash it, but
however you cut it, this is way below what top tablets suggest you'll get. It
seemed to charge quite slowly too. There is a camera on the back which we can
guarantee that no-one will ever use. Its resolution is two megapixels, which is
below even entry level for a phone these days, and is extremely laggy when both
viewing on screen and taking actual snaps. It’s a worthless addition. The
front-facing camera is equally stuck In the past with its 0.3-megapixel
ability. That one at least does serve a function for video chat.
Twin speakers on the back of the chassis
deliver average quality sound, but the equaliser does help a little in this
respect. There Is no GPS, however.
speakers on the back of the chassis deliver average quality sound, but the
equaliser does help a little in this respect
The screen, on the other hand, is lovely.
No, really. Disgo says it is the same screen that’s used in the iPad 2 and it
certainly looks great. A bright 9.7-inch IPS display with a whopping 1,024x768
pixels on offer and super viewing angles. It was a pleasure to work with.
The screen isn’t Gorilla Glass and we
discovered by accident that mildly heavy pressure causes It to ‘bleed’. You
could certainly do a lot of damage by dropping something onto the screen or
simply resting heavy objects on it. We would definitely recommend some kind of
case if you were to ever carry this in your bag.
As for performance, well we’ve already
noted that the Disgo Tablet 9104 runs on a 1.2GHz processor. This Is
single-core of course, and we did find there were pauses while applications
loaded, and at various other times as well. Complex webpages didn’t load as
slickly as we might like, with white screen moments while we waited for pages
to be rendered, and pauses while images were grabbed into pages too. But we
could probably live with that, and it was not out of line with our expectations
for a device of this price. However, the quad-core processor in the Nexus 7 is
currently causing a realignment of our price expectations. The 1GB of RAM
onboard does help move things along, so while the device is far from speedy Its
performance is relatively solid.
It is also nice to see among the array of
ports and buttons that there’s a mini HDMI connector. That’s not something you
usually see on a budget tablet. The device doesn’t handle HD content too well,
but If you load up a memory card with standard definition movies it also
becomes an effective media player.
Budget tablets can often fail to include
the full Android experience, and that is partly the same here. There’s no
Gmail, Maps, or other Google apps installed. We did have access to the
all-important Play store, though. We’ve seen some reviews saying the store Is
not present, but we can assure you it was on our review device. If it Is not on
a purchased device you can locate It online and install it easily enough.
In the end, then, there are annoyances here
as you would expect In such a budget device. But if you want a tablet because
of its good screen, access to apps and email, and Wi-Fi based online
capability, and don’t have a fortune to spend, you may find the Disgo 9104 to
be a better option than you might have expected. It has none of the finesse or
power of the similarly priced Nexus 7, but the larger screen and HDMI out
capability shouldn’t be completely overlooked.
More information: www.mydisgo.info
Battery life is poor. It’s possible to deplete the battery in a
single session, and | it will need several charges per week
Operating system...............Android 4.0
Processor...................................1.2GHz Cortex A8
Memory.......................................16GB storage, 1GB RAM
Dimensions..............................243 x 190 x 12 mm
Display resolution...............1,024 x 768 pixels
Expansion slot.......................micro SD
Slow at times but a healthy amount of RAM keeps it ticking along
Solid build quality but bland design -clearly a budget device
HDMI-out is a nice addition. The lack of Google apps is a
Value for money
Budget price and budget performance
It’s no Nexus 7 that’s for sure, but if you accept its limitations
it can do a job as a solid budget device