A few months ago I bought a Scroll Excel 7 inch tablet to have beside my rocking chair ( I am in my late seventies ) to be able to dip into whilst watching TV rather than use my cumbersome laptop. The tablet served its purpose well but over time I began to feel that the 7 inch screen was too small and I have never much liked its 16:9 format. I therefore decided to look for something bigger with a 4:3 screen and within a £120 budget. Settling on the MOMO8 BIRD I placed an order with GTR Electronics because that company seems to have attracted favourable reports for its customer service and it certainly responded quickly and helpfully to all my e-mails.
Delivery was rapid, within 48 hours, but packaging left a great deal to be desired. Ployer, the manufacturer, has elected to supply the tablet in a tight fitting box which has room only for the tablet and a couple of small connectors. The earpieces and charger are supplied separately and seemingly have to be packed by the retailer. This is a messy and unsatisfactory arrangement and Ployer really should follow convention and put everything into one box.
Out of the box the MOMO8 BIRD seemed to be well made, sturdy and surprisingly weighty for such a slim device. First port of call was the user manual which turned out to be almost useless. Anyone with experience of Android should have no difficulty setting up the tablet but without this experience it may be something of a nightmare due to the lack of suitable instructions. After switch-on the MOMO8 BIRD quickly found my router and thereafter wi-fi performance was flawless. The screen is sharp with well balanced if slightly muted colours ( I downloaded the Chelsea Flower Show to test the colour performance ). Viewing angles are reasonable. Response to touch is rapid but scrolling can sometimes be a bit jerky. I found the 4:3 format to be far superior to 16:9 for readability and ease of use.
There is not a great deal more I need to say other than that the tablet did everything I asked of it and at a shade over £100 I think it is very good value for money. It is too early to comment on reliability. Pity about the box and user manual.
PS. 15 June 2012. I must have had a senior moment when I wrote the above because I failed to realise that there is a comprehensive user manual for Android 4.0 which can be downloaded (PDF) from the GTR Electronics site.
Having made extensive use of the tablet over the last couple of weeks I felt that the standard browser was a bit slow. I tried all the well known browsers and came down in favour of Opera Mobile because it is the one with which I feel most comfortable. Other than that I have been impressed with the performance of the tablet and consider my £100 or so well spent.Read more ›
(Note UPDATE 26/06/12 at bottom) (Note UPDATE 2 10/07/12 at very bottom)
I received this player 22 may from GTR Electonics, a few days ahead of the estimated delivery time. Well done to them.
I have now had time to size up how this momo8 bird fits up against my usage.
Tablet feels good and came well packaged with nearly everything i needed.
I added a mini-hdmi to hdmi and a 16gb micro sdhc card and a case is now winging its way here from GTR. Micro SDHC was a Sandisk Micro Secure Digital (MicroSDHC) Memory Card - 16GB - Class 4, works fine.
My usage is : Primarily, during a 1 hour commute each day, using mobile internet through phone and watching stored video downloads. Secondary, while sitting on the SOFA, using internet through WIFI. Tertiary, the occasional use while away from routine days on holiday/work away from home.
Primary usage is very good for me, screen is good and catching up on blogs/forums/news is quick. I have been using the tablet from standby and then doing a quick refresh of some open pages, this is proving very good. I am also getting three days usage out of a single charge, i.e. 6 1-hour commutes before a recharge is required, the other time being spent in standby. Its size is good for going in my rucksack, big enough, not too big, not too heavy. One small snag on the primary usage is loss of mobile internet connection I will explain more at end, and i think is outside of the momo8 bird tablet and is a phone problem.
Secondary usage is also top notch, using a few apps, bbc iplayer, blogs/forum/surfing/email. Also with my house WIFI I have experienced no wifi drop outs what so ever. Comfortable to hold and use for reasonably long periods.
Tertiary usage is not really being experimented with too much yet, but videos and other items i download whether it be iplayer or youtube plays straightaway through the TV through HDMI. I will try some skype out soon when skypeing my dad to his great grand daughter.
All this came straight out the box, and worked fine.
When first used the google play needed an update, went through without a hitch and is very good,
Application installation has been fine and as a previous non android user, i am picking up the way that androind 4.0 ice cream sandwich works.
Installed a few different web browsers, settled on the dolphin HD one, seems best, not picked out a new virtual keyboard yet, though that is coming.
Have installed a few varied apps and a mate has pointed me towards fruit ninja which shows the speed and usability for the tablet for games and the accuracy of the touch screen.
On expermiment I have found the front camera and sound to be fine, and I have even used the web voice search on dolphin and found it to be quite decent!!
So super pleased with my purchase, glad i deliberated and procrastinated for about three months and then settled on this. For what I paid (£110 total inc delivery) from GTR this is a great purchase.
The support from GTR has been excellent.
Overall it is actually way above me expectations (which were high) and I am delighted.
Will heartily recommend this to others, only caution is to make sure that for your PERSONAL usage this product is a good fit. Though this would apply if you were paying £400 for a tablet, £4000 for a holiday or £100000 for a house.
Back to the snag.... This may be a lack of understanding and i have not attempted to use the extensive android forums to establish if there is a simple fix. The mobile internet dropouts, now I have a symbian phone and with jokiuspot (the best wifi hotspot app apparently) has an encrypted mode. As my usage would frequently be in a public place i decided to use encryption.
All seemed ok, then i experienced a few dropouts on commutes, maybe once in the day, not sure what the trigger is. Connection to mobile wifi hot spot could be re-established ok. Not a great bother for my usage, just niggly. I have been looking into it and symbian need "root" access on the tablet to make an ad-hoc wi-fi connection (all symbian phones need an application to be a wi-fi hotspot), the momo8 bird is rooted, so the tablet is making this connection fine. I think it is the phone that is at issue (no problems with my home WI-FI) and there may be a work around, like a new application for making mobile connections better, but I have not got a solution yet only the workaround of reconnect. It could also be the network provider.
If I find a solution I will post an update.
The snag would not put me off another purchase at all though.
Well happy customer, thanks GTR for steering me in this direction!
Well investigations show mobile WIFI mobile dropouts seem to be due to WIFI on symbian, being of AD-HOC WIFI connection rather than INFRASTRUCTURE WIFI connections. A new phone is one the imminent horizion, so when this changed and tested this may improve. It seems NOT to be the MOMO8 Bird.
Unexpectedly i have found myself watching stored videos on commutes more often and this has been going very well. Have become that immersed I have nearly missed my stop!!
Note after some support from Gary I updated the FIRMWARE, bit scary updating but went fine if I followed Garys instructions. Finally, I have installed more games than planned - especially for kids to play - and only considering the free ones these are very good and some are very educational, good for a quiet hour early on a sunday morning while allowing everyone else to have a lie in and piece.
UPDATE 2 10/07/12.....
Well on new phone (HTC ONE V) and new MOMO 8 BIRD firmware version 4.0.4 now.
Mobile WIFI has no disconnects on my travels from my phone... so problem was definitely the phone.
Firmware also seems to make phone generally more responsive in general than before. Notably i experienced the occasional uncommanded back command, now not experiencing this at all.
so, new fimrware has made a great tablet even better...Read more ›
My first confession...I am an Apple Fanboy. I have used Apple kit since 1988, from their early desktops, through to my recent 24 inch iMac, and my new iPhone 4S. I love their cosmetic designs and the comparative ease of using their operating systems compared to many others. I am an old boy at 55 years of age, but in my HEAD, I'm only 20. Having just sold my small business and consequently getting rid of most of my IT equipment, I felt the need for a portable device with a screen larger than my iPhone for daily use.
I REALLY, oh, SO REALLY wanted an iPad, but I wanted one with the highest storage capacity available (64GB) and THAT was going to cost me a hefty £600 or thereabouts. When looked at my options I also found myself thinking that - as great as I think iPads are - they were a bigger lump to carry around with me day by day than perhaps was ideal for my purpose. (I know a lot of people DO carry them about quite happily so don't shoot me down in flames here! lol) I also found myself wanting to discover more about the new Android ICS operating system of which I was beginning to hear good reports.
Just realised I'm boring you all, so I'll get to the point...I did a lot of research and this tablet consistently kept coming up 5 star reviews from those who'd bought it. It seemed to meet all my needs and do nearly everything I thought an iPad would do for me. Consistently recommended also was seller 'Gary' of GTR Electronics ([...]) based in Scotland, so I took the plunge and bought one from him. It arrived at my door only two days later. NOTE: I know I'm going to compare it a lot to the iPad in the next couple of paragraphs, but I do so deliberately for those who, like me, would have LIKED an iPad, but for whatever reasons are now considering alternatives.
Straight out of the box I could see my Momo8 Bird was a nicely put together piece of kit. It's a great size to carry and hold, is about the same thickness as an iPad, and feels well balanced in the hand. It's lighter than an iPad - when it's in my case, I hardly notice it's there. It boots quickly and silently into the Ice Cream Sandwich operating system, and the screen looks VERY crisp and clear - personally, I can't see much difference to the iPad's screen except it's slightly smaller. The 8 inch screen with it's 4:3 format was my preference as I personally feel it makes reading web pages and eBooks, etc., more comfortable and realistic than the many widescreen type tablets available. It's also more than big enough to view same without having to keep 'pinching' the screen to make things bigger or smaller as you navigate around (although this also works perfectly well if you have the need to do it!).
Although I've only had the tablet a couple of days or so, everything has worked flawlessly thus far. High definition video, BBC iPlayer and News, YouTube, Skype (although I had to uninstall and reinstall the app before I got the video call option) are all operating as designed. After so long using Apple devices it took me a few hours to find my way around the 'Android 4.3 Ice Cream Sandwich' operating system, but once I HAD I found it intuitive and in many ways as easy to use as Apple's iOS5. Even high def video playback is smooth and not at all jerky. I bought a 32GB microSD card, inserted it into the slot on the unit, and it mounted automatically in seconds and was useable immediately. Together with the on board memory, I now have 40GB's of storage and, if I'm away travelling, I only have to carry extra microSD cards with me and, as they appear to be 'hot swappable', I can carry unlimited storage with me - unlike the maximum 64GB that I would have had with Apple's 'closed' devices.
If it carries on the way it is I can honestly say it's probably the best hundred quid I've ever spent. Is it an iPad? No. For example, I find scrolling on the iPad to be slightly smoother and 'cleaner'...just...er...better - I can't really put it into words. The touch screen on an iPad is just superb - the best and most sophisticated on the market - and I would argue that point with anyone.
However, whilst acknowledging that fact, the capacitive touch screen on this Momo8 is excellent and works in very much the same way - certainly much better than any other Android Tablet screen I've played with in the shops; perhaps with the exception of the 'Samsung Galaxy Tab' units which, as I'm sure you know, are priced at give or take the same level as iPads. I very much like the Apple AND the Samsung units, but I honestly don't feel that they're so much better than this Momo8 that I'd be willing to pay an extra 200 to 400 pounds to have one in preference!
On a finishing note, I've found Gary at GTR Electronics to be as efficient and as helpful as I'd heard. The few queries I've emailed him have been answered VERY quickly with just the answers and advice I needed - probably better than almost any seller I've dealt with before. Buy from him in confidence (that's 50 quid you owe me Gary mate! lol). Seriously, I've no connection with him or GTR but he's made the whole experience thus far as pleasurable as it could be, and I've no doubt if I DO experience any problems in future he'll be there for me - thanks Gary!
As a final word...GTR Electronics also sell a neoprene soft case they've had tailor made to measure for this unit. It's very cheap. Buy one at the same time as you order your Momo8 because trying to find a case to fit an 8 inch tablet in the high street is nigh on impossible, and the hard cover cases (some with built in USB keyboards built in) you can find online add CONSIDERABLY to the bulk of this slim-line unit if you've got to carry it around with you.Read more ›