The market has changed substantially since Telstra's ill-fated initial Android tablet.

For a start, Android has developed tablet-friendly versions of Android, Apple has entered the 7-inch market with the iPad mini, and Google has finally brought its Nexus program to tablets, with the Nexus 7 and Nexus 10.

Telstra 4G tablet

This makes the Telstra 4G Tablet a much harder sell. The 10.1-inch device may have moved past its questionable heritage, but so has the rest of the market.

Still, Telstra's new tablet does a pretty good job at balancing specs and affordability.

Its most endearing feature - LTE support for Telstra's 4G network - offers an interesting feature for high-speed junkies, without needing to spend a large amount on the device itself.

We liked

For a cheaper tablet, Telstra's 4G device is remarkably solid. It's slightly on the heavy side, but feels comfortable in the hands, and when you factor in that a good chunk of that weight is for extra battery life, it's all worth it.

There was a surprising lack of Telstra bloatware for a Telstra badged device, which was a very welcome surprise.

Also welcome was the device's screen, which was vibrant and colourful. Admittedly it's not good enough to compete with the super high-resolution Retina displays in Apple's latest iPads, but for a cheaper tablet it looked good.

Telstra 4G tablet play store

But easily the best feature of the Telstra 4G tablet is its 4G connectivity. With speeds matching - and occasionally exceeding - ADSL2+, this device can get you online fast.

We disliked

As we close in on 2013, the question has to be asked - why on earth do gadget manufacturers insist on providing proprietary connection ports?

At least with Apple, you know there is both an ecosystem, and a constant connector across Apple devices. The proprietary port on the Telstra tablet could never be used again, and will be a constant pain for users who forget the necessary cord.

The device gets a little laggy when scrolling and switching between home pages, which can get a little frustrating over time. It's not a dealbreaker, and honestly who's complaining at the price? But it is noticeable, and takes away from the experience.

Telstra 4G tablet unlock screen

You'll never use the cameras on this tablet, at least after the first time you end up disappointed with the results. The 5MP camera on the back honestly may as well not even be there, as its absence might have made the device even cheaper.

Verdict

Anyone fearing the T-Touch Tab Mark II need not concern themselves. Telstra has created a reasonable product that combines better than average hardware with the telco's fast LTE network.

At $480, it's slightly more expensive that the 16GB Nexus 10. And this is where the tough decisions need to be made - do you opt for the Nexus 10's superior hardware, or the Telstra 4G tablet's superior network?

Telstra 4G tablet side

As good as 4G is, we'd probably opt for the Nexus, despite its lack of wireless connectivity.

But if mobile access is an essential component of your purchase, this device won't let you down. It may not blow you away with happiness, but it shouldn't disappoint too much either.