Coby Comes to Las Vegas With a Flurry of Low-End Android 4.0 Tablets [CES 2012]


We expected the folks at Coby to come to CES with their tablets but we weren’t quite expecting the new range they’ve drummed up. They had a series of Android tablets on hand sized from 7 Inches up to 10.1 and everything you can think of in between.

Most of them were similar internally with 512MB-1GB of RAM and a 1GHz ARM Cortex-A8 single-core processor. The biggest surprise, though, is that they were running Android 4.0.

While we expect these devices to be very affordable we can’t say they’ll be very good. Android 4.0 running on a single-core 1GHz processor runs, but that doesn’t mean it runs great (or good, for that matter). OS performance was very sluggish. It was hard to switch between apps, swipe through homescreens or anything else you’d normally find yourself doing.

With everything we didn’t like about the hardware and software combination we were still impressed by the assortment of connectivity options given to us. All models had HDMI-out ports which are capable of outputting video between 720p and 1080p (or lower).

All of them had microSD card slots, 3.5mm headphone jacks, microUSB ports (one of them even had two). Wirelessly we only have WiFi b/g with no Bluetooth radios to speak of.

These tablets won’t wow and impress those of us who long for dual and quad core processors but it could end up being a nice cheap gift for a family member who wants a tablet.

The fact that they have Android 4.0 makes me forgive Coby a little for skimping on the processor (they could have at least fitted 1.5GHz single-core SoCs here) but it’s hardly the selling point with how poorly it performs. Check out some of the devices we had a chance to play with above and below.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. Shitty tablets like these give Android bad press. Stupid consumers who use these will blame Android for being sluggish and ugly.

    1. EXACTLY!  You get what you pay for. If they truly want the Android experience, invest more.  Apple would also have a slew of shitty tablets if their OS was open.  

      1. iOS 5 runs fine on a single-core 1GHz A4 with 256MB of RAM. Android is the problem, Google needs to step it up AND GIVE US SOME NATIVE CODE.

        1. No they don’t. CPU power will soon be so cheap, that you don’t notice the performance hit with Java code. And Google already released the NDK quite some time ago. Now with MIPS, Intel and AMD entering the arena will mean more different builds with native code.

    2. We’re talking engineering samples – not finished goods – on half the tablets featuring ICS @ CES this week.  How can you make a judgment on finished product when a lot of what is being shown is simply not that.

      I would bet that specs change and performance changes on mass production samples on any tablet you see this week.

  2. Most of these will end up being just a $100 web browser! I find that really hilarious.

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