HTC Flyer Tablet Review

By on August 8, 2011
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Can a 7″ tablet with an older Android 2.x OS survive the iPad & Honeycomb ones?

Good: Excellent construction quality, pen works beautifully and SenseUI 3.0 is really slick
Bad: Based on older Android 2.x platform, many apps don't scale too well, very pricey
Price: AED 2,999
* The price is the Suggested Retail Price at the time of review. Please call a retailer to confirm the latest price for this product.

HTC has generally been on the forefront of technology when it comes to Android based devices. However, while other manufacturers are releasing tablets based on Google’s latest tablet-approved Honeycomb OS, HTC takes a step back with their new 7” tablet. The HTC Flyer comes with Android 2.x instead which is really an OS for Smartphones and not tablets. So why did HTC go down this route? And was it a wise decision? Let’s find out.

I received the HTC Flyer a few days back in a white box that included a really nice looking white leather carrying case, a pen (more on that later) and a charger that sports a somewhat proprietary connector. However, I was able to connect and charge the HTC Flyer using a standard micro USB cable so my guess is that the equipped charger with the proprietary connector is for rapid charging.

The HTC Flyer measures 195.4 x 122 x 13.2 mm and weighs 420 grams. To give you a comparison, the 7” Galaxy Tab measures 190x120x12mm and weighs 380 grams while the BlackBerry PlayBook measures 194x130x10 and weighs 425 grams. The Flyer isn’t the thinnest of the tablets and, for it’s size, feels a tad bit heavier than all other 7” tablets- even though the PlayBook is actually heavier. HTC has done a fantastic job with the unibody design- the build quality and finish feels premium all over. On the top, you have a 3.5mm audio jack as well as the power button while the right side has the volume buttons. The top of the device slides off to reveal slots for the SIM and MicroSD cards. Lastly, at the bottom you have the USB/charging port.

While most new tablets that we have reviewed feature a dual core CPU, HTC chose a single core but a speedy 1.5GHz CPU for the Flyer that completed the Sun Spider benchmark in 2719ms- just a tad bit slower than the dual-core honeycomb based tablets. Along with the 1.5GHz CPU, you have 1GB RAM and a storage capacity of 32GBs for your applications, media files and document. If that is not enough, you have a MicroSD (2.0) slot at the back of the Flyer.

HTC goes all out with connectivity options on the Flyer with HSPA equipped radio for the 3G version along with 802.11b/g/n wireless networking and Bluetooth 3.0 support. An internal GPS antenna is also present for location services. As with most tablets, you have front facing (1.3MP) camera as well as a camera on the back (5MP) along with the usual assortment of sensors for proximity, light, G-Sensor and a digital compass.

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Abbas Jaffar Ali is the founder of and a blogger, geek and self-declared tech pundit who can't stop talking about technology. Find him on twitter as @ajaffarali

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