Carphone Warehouse debuts Windows tablet that's cheaper than a console game

The Hipstreet W7 tablet
The Hipstreet W7 tablet.

The race for the cheapest tablet on the market is heating up as Carphone Warehouse, which merged with Currys/PCWorld owner, DSGi, earlier this year, slashed the price of its Windows 8 tablet from £69 to £49, making it by far the cheapest brand new tablet you can buy from the high street.

The tablet, the Hipstreet W7, looks very similar to the Linx 7 that we reviewed recently bar two important changes. It only has 16GB of onboard storage and its display is a 1024 x 600 pixel model.

The rest of the specification though is carbon copy: Windows 8.1, Office 365 for a year, 1GB RAM, rear and front cameras, a microSD card slot, a quad-core Intel Atom processor, Bluetooth, microUSB, micro HDMI port and, according to Carphone Warehouse, even GPS onboard.

We don't expect it to be a stellar performer or to surprise us. The Linx 7 deal (about the same price if you trade-in an old tablet) is better in our view.

However, if you want to buy Office 365 Personal, then this is a no-brainer as it is the cheapest way to get one AND get a "free" tablet at the same time.

Hipstreet may not be a household name but it is a popular low-cost brand with online US retailers like Best Buy, TigerDirect or Walmart. Both Tesco and Argos have released their own cheap Windows tablets in the run-up to Christmas.

Desire Athow
Managing Editor, TechRadar Pro

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website builders and web hosting when DHTML and frames were in vogue and started narrating about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium.