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Hi,I've just posted a review of the M003 in the blog section of the website. But thought it worthwhile to post here too.I'd welcome any opinions, or whether I've missed anything important.Taken from our website, I'm reposting a quick review of the Eken M003.We are a small online retailer based in Ireland who are stocking this, but have written an impartial and honest opinion of the device."We received our new Android tablets during the week, and have spent several days testing them. We’ll try to be unbiased on this blog, and give a proper, “warts-and-all” perspective – it is our philosophy that anyone buying from our store should be happy with their purchase, and for this we will need to be completely honest.OK, on to the actual opinion.The brand of the tablets we are stocking is the EKen M003. To summarise it, it is an 8” tablet with a resistive touchscreen running Google’s Android Operating System (version 1.6).So then, what can this tablet do? To list its strengths:- It is great for watching YouTube videos using the YouTube app provided- There are “push” email applications included that can be used for Gmail and Yahoo/other webmail accounts; we’ve got both Yahoo and Gmail set up, and the emails arrive simultaneously on the tablet and on a PC- It is an excellent device for casual web browsing over a wireless network- Full access is provided to the Android Marketplace, so anything on there can be installed – games, productivity applications etc.; there are currently approximately 70,000 apps and counting.- The screen is pretty good for watching movies, although the quality can be patchy- It is truly excellent as an eBook reader, especially given the high price of standalone eBook readers; the Kindle app (pre-installed on all tablets we supply) provides full access to Amazon’s online store of eBooks- Skype and Fring apps can be used for Instant Messaging etc.- The Facebook app is fully functional for keeping in touch with all of your Facebook friendsOn the other hand, it is not a perfect device (what is?!). It has a few important weaknesses:- The tablet occasionally responds sluggishly; patience is required at times- As mentioned above, video playback can be hit-and-miss. AVI videos are basically unsupported and will need to be converted to mp4 using an application like Handbrake- Web browsing functionality does not include flash – only Android versions 2.2 and above can support this, and the iPad cannot support it at all, so it’s not the end of the world, but it is a part of the web that is missing- Wireless connectivity is limited to b & g; there is no support for the faster 802.11n standard if that is something that you need. It’s not something that was particularly apparent in testing, however- Android Marketplace occasionally didn’t download applications. This is a well-known issue with these tablets, and a solution is outlined belowWhen we got the device initially, a couple of key applications didn’t work particularly well, namely the YouTube app and the Android Marketplace.However, after installing the latest firmware from the manufacturer – something that will be done in advance for every tablet before we ship them out – YouTube worked perfectly, and the Marketplace worked almost perfectly.It does still have one irritating bug, however. Sometimes an App won’t download, and the only solution is to go into Settings / Applications / Manage Applications, and “Clear Cache”, or “Clear Data” from each of the following apps: Download Manager, Google Apps and Market. This will require you to log into the Marketplace again next time you open it, but the Downloads should then work fine.All of this information – and a lot more besides – can be found on the forums and websites of the vast and ever-growing Android community, at websites such as slatedroid.com.The best points of this tablet, for our needs, are the access to instantaneous “push” email, the excellent Kindle app (it is hard to overstate how useful this is, when Amazon’s Kindle store has books such as the complete works of Jane Austen for €1, or access to pretty much every newspaper in the world for a monthly subscription that is often less than the price of the paper at a newsagent), and the YouTube app.Basically, if you’re looking for the slickness and power of an iPad, buy an iPad!On the other hand, if you want something for roughly a third of the price to sit on your lap for casual web browsing, occasional YouTube video-watching, eBook or newspaper/magazine reading at home, on a train or airplane, to keep in touch via email, Facebook and Skype, this is a really useful all-in-one device." Regards,muggins2003
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
[quote name='fallenfate;14227]I recently got this with version 1.7.4 firmware. However' date=' marketplace, fring and skype all don't seem to work. You tried these and they worked?[/QUOTE'] Hi.Marketplace works fine for us, although there is a problem with downloading apps as mentioned in our review - there's a really useful pair of blog posts by mogrith on how to get around this in the "Blogs" section of this site.Skype works fine, although I'll admit we primarily tested the IM functions rather than the full voice service.Unfortunately, we don't have fring accounts, so never tested this; hopefully someone else on the forum has more experience there.We've tested this on all of our devices, and they all seem to work OK, barring the problems previously mentioned.muggins2003
 

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Nice review, though a bit too positive at essential points:- the device is slow. always, in all apps, and not 'The tablet occasionally responds sluggishly; patience is required at times'- Youtube works in 1.7.4 at the lowest resolution and the search is broken (single word searching), that is much less than: 'It is great for watching YouTube videos using the YouTube app provided'- the marketplace is hit and miss, takes lots of actions and even if it works it is a pain, not: the Marketplace worked almost perfectly
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
HansO;14274]Nice review said:
The tablet occasionally responds sluggishly; patience is required at times'[/I]- Youtube works in 1.7.4 at the lowest resolution and the search is broken (single word searching), that is much less than: 'It is great for watching YouTube videos using the YouTube app provided'- the marketplace is hit and miss, takes lots of actions and even if it works it is a pain, not: the Marketplace worked almost perfectly
Fair points, although the review was trying to take into account the cost of the item, and perhaps we gave it a little more leeway than others might have.The first and third items are definitely the most important ones to me too, and the speed is certainly an issue, although for an item costing ?200, it's difficult to say that more should be expected. The marketplace is also a disappointment - I don't like the issues that arise within it, but am hoping against hope that someone out there will produce a firmware or other solution to get rid of - or at least reduce - the frequency of the problem.The second isn't an issue to me; youtube is always hit and miss with regards to quality. We didn't have any problems with search; multi-word searches worked fine.I suppose the key thing with this pad is that it does lots of things OK - nothing great, and does absolutely nothing better than specialised or more expensive devices. But for the price, if expectations are tempered appropriately, it's a decent piece of kit.I take your points though, and wouldn't like to think we are underplaying these issues; hopefully the review is read in the context of the price and purpose of the pad, rather than creating unrealistic expectations.Thanks for your feedback!
 

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Search works fine in YouTube for me. Whenever I enter a search like "Tina Fey", it comes back with the appropriate vids, but the string has been squashed together to read "TinaFey". If you want to avoid that, just put "+" signs for spaces. When I do that, search works OK. Your mileage may vary.
 

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The perceptions of "sluggishness" are going to be based on your expectations. I expected the M003 to be slow, so it does seem sluggish to me "at times". Most of the time it is perfectly OK. But if you're expecting performance comparable to a higher end cell phone or iPad, then indeed the thing is "always" sluggish.
 

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I have been using my M003 for about a month now. Begining to get the apps I want and getting used to it's quirks.Expectation is the key. I paid $136.00 for mine. sterling 89.64 (British pounds) I use a tortoise as an avatar for a reason. For me this was going to be portable super picture frame to show my photos. It does that quite well. I don't even try to watch video on it. I now use this as my mobile podcast player, talking book player, backup ebook reader, casual game player, twitter reader.I also can use it for work if I have to. It will do VPN into my corp network and I can use VNC to control PC's. I can read and write MS Office files on it.So for me it works well at a lot more than I expected.I don't recommend it to everyone most people want to play video for them I recommend they wait a little longer for the next gen of tablets comes out with better CPU/GPU.
 

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[quote name='Alexia;14515]I just got my Eken M003 today from [URL=http://www.everbuying.com/EKEN-M003-MINI-8-Inch-Android1-6-Ebook-Tablet-PC-UMPC-MID-Netbook-p-28281.html]everbuying[/URL] and it arrived much faster then I anticipated (in the US)' date=' their earliest estimate for delivery is still a week away It's so cool![/QUOTE']Pretty good .A good taste.
 

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[quote name='Alexia;14515]I just got my Eken M003 today from [URL=http://www.everbuying.com/EKEN-M003-MINI-8-Inch-Android1-6-Ebook-Tablet-PC-UMPC-MID-Netbook-p-28281.html]everbuying[/URL] and it arrived much faster then I anticipated (in the US)' date=' their earliest estimate for delivery is still a week away It's so cool![/QUOTE'] Good deal.the price seems not expensive.I need one.
 

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[quote name='Alexia;14515]I just got my Eken M003 today from [URL=http://www.everbuying.com/EKEN-M003-MINI-8-Inch-Android1-6-Ebook-Tablet-PC-UMPC-MID-Netbook-p-28281.html]everbuying[/URL] and it arrived much faster then I anticipated (in the US)' date=' their earliest estimate for delivery is still a week away It's so cool![/QUOTE']It's beautiful indeed.I like it too!
 
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