Gigaset are known for their high-quality DECT phones, but have been adding to their portfolio of products recently with a range of Baby Monitors, and have now made their first foray into the world of Android tablets. We were excited to get our hands on their entry-level QV830; a compact 8-inch tablet, which boasts 8GB of internal memory, Android 4.2.2 (Jelly Bean), and a Cortex A7 Quad-core 1.2 GHz Processor. Aimed at those on a tight budget with a price of £99.99, the QV830 compares favourably against the competition and looks a good deal more stylish and grown-up than other similarly priced tablets.
With it's 8" display and aluminium back, you'd be forgiven for mistaking the QV830 as a more expensive premium model and the price really does belie how nice this tablet is. At only 8mm thick, it is similar in size to Apple's iPad Mini and conveniently compact and portable. After a few days of use, it's still very comfortable to use, and can be held one-handed whilst watching a video or reading without causing any strain although two hands for typing and general use is essential (unless laid flat).
The rear is made from a plush anodised aluminium, which gives the tablet it's elegant appearance and feel. All the buttons (volume, screen lock/power) as well as micro USB port, headset socket, and discreet compartment for a microSD slot (to expand the memory to 32GB) can all be found along the top, leaving the rest of the edges feeling smooth and easy to handle.
Screen and camera
The 8-inch display of the QV830 boasts a resolution of 1024 x 768 pixels, which is a tad underwhelming even for its budget price. Tesco's Hudl, for example, manages to pack 1440 x 900px into a smaller 7" screen for the same price; however, it's worth noting that whilst you might be able to discern a difference if you were to place both side by side (and closely scrutinise) the overall image quality on the QV830 is good. For watching films, browsing the web, and catching up on BBC iPlayer we found the display to be more than adequate.
On the rear of the tablet is a 5.0 MP camera, which the less said about, the better. The results in our tests weren't bad; to be fair the QV830 achieved a good balance of exposure, and colours, however, the main issue was the amount of digital noise present in the images so you shouldn't expect your photos to come out especially sharp. There is an HDR setting, which delivers slightly better results, but you probably wouldn't want to use the camera on the QV830 for anything more than just an occasional snap.
There is also a front facing camera for video calls, which we tested using the free Skype app for Android. Both the sound quality and the image quality were reasonably good for anyone looking to connect with distant friends and/or family.
Software and performance
As mentioned at the start of the review, Gigaset use AndroidTM 4.2.2 Jelly Bean as the OS for their tablet, and the QV830 is Google certified. The OS has remained virtually untampered with by Gigaset, so Android users should feel at home, and for anyone new to the whole thing, the QV830 is fairly easy to get to grips with. It's powered by a Cortex A7 Quad-core 1.2 GHz Processor and backed up by 1GB of RAM, which is not likely to impress any serious gamers but would pose no problems for casual gamers.
Under test conditions the battery life was dependable, providing a full day's worth of watching movies, listening to music, and browsing the web. The claims made by Gigaset that it will charge up in around 4 hours are spot on, and if their cordless phones are anything to go by then we would expect the QV830 to continue to work well throughout its life cycle.
The Gigaset QV830 outshines other similarly priced tablets; offering exceptional value for money as it manages to deliver the look and feel of a more expensive and higher-quality tablet. Any initial reservations we may have had about a Gigaset Tablet were allayed after using the QV830, which performs well and is as good as it gets at this price.
And speaking of "competition" if you'd like to be in with a chance of winning the QV830 we reviewed, head over to our Facebook page and hit like to be notified of our upcoming giveaway.