Hands on: ZTE Light review

On to the interface – the ZTE Light capacitive runs Android 2.2 and the company hasn't said whether there are plans to update it to any newer versions or the tablet-specific Android 3.0 as yet.

The locked screen features a handy at-a-glance (or it would be if it showed up) view of your unread messages and emails.

ZTE light review

The capacitive touchscreen is fairly good; swiping through screens was no problem at all, but we did find the screen a little slow to respond to jabs.

This may have been down to slow loading times rather than screen responsiveness, however. It was only a difference of maybe a second, but in that second we found ourselves impatiently tapping the app icons again and ending up closing the app or launching something we didn't mean to.

Given the issues we had with the screen in menu mode, text input was surprisingly painless. In portrait mode we could just about stretch our thumbs across the pad to type one-handed, but with two it was much more comfortable.

ZTE light review

The landscape keyboard is much more spacious.

ZTE light review

The ZTE Light comes with call-making capabilities, if you fancy looking like a complete moron talking into a 7-inch device. The dial pad is comically huge in portrait:

ZTE light review

And utterly ridiculous in landscape set up.

ZTE light review

We weren't too impressed with the ZTE Light's rear-mounted camera; although still shots were okay quality, it was slow to focus and slow to take the shot, meaning you have to keep still for quite some time.

The video recording was abominable: full of noise, jerky, pixellated – it felt as if we'd gone back in time to 2005.

The software doesn't vary much from the regular Android 2.2 set up, so contacts, messaging inboxes and media players are all much as you'd expect.

Unfortunately we had no data connection so we couldn't try out web browsing or any video content that wasn't recorded by the terrible rear-facing camera.

But despite a couple of niggles, we didn't have a bad experience with the ZTE Light. It won't be the tablet for everyone, but if you're happy with an aged version of Android or strapped for cash but desperate for a tablet it could be just what you're looking for.

That said, ZTE is keeping schtum on pricing for now – but we can bet it won't be up in the realms of the iPad 2.

The ZTE Light capacitive model should be hitting the UK in the second half of the year, possibly under another name licensed to a network – at which point we'll bring you a full review.

News Editor (UK)

Former UK News Editor for TechRadar, it was a perpetual challenge among the TechRadar staff to send Kate (Twitter, Google+) a link to something interesting on the internet that she hasn't already seen. As TechRadar's News Editor (UK), she was constantly on the hunt for top news and intriguing stories to feed your gadget lust. Kate now enjoys life as a renowned music critic – her words can be found in the i Paper, Guardian, GQ, Metro, Evening Standard and Time Out, and she's also the author of 'Amy Winehouse', a biography of the soul star.