Pipo W2 review

What's the catch?

Pipo W2
Meet the Pipo W2

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Pipo is one of many white-label tablet makers that have embarked on the Wintel adventure, expect many more to follow by year's end (HP just announced two models including an 8-inch Stream 8 tablet that is based on Windows and sells for $150). For now though, the W2 has set the standard.

We liked

The W2 is well built for a circa £100 device. No loose or poorly glued part and the screen shows no apparent gap and does the job great. I love the amount of connectivity available. The cameras are decent shooters provided you have enough lighting.

The rear one is a 5-megapixel model that even comes with autofocus. The rest of the important parameters: battery life, performance and value-for-money, are nothing short of exceptional for a device of this price.

We disliked

I'm hard pressed to find anything worth mentioning. One needs to bear in mind that this is a tablet that's meant to hit the lowest rung of PC ladder.

In the wide scheme of things, Pipo could get rid of the charger as you can charge the tablet from any existing charger with a microUSB port. That would shrink the package, cut down on the bill of material and make it easier to ship. Google did it with the Motorola Moto G, so why not Pipo.

I don't understand why the tablet shipped with a 32-bit version of Windows 8.1, which, I reckon is more of Microsoft's fault than Pipo; even more ludicrous when considering Intel's Z3735D is a 64-bit CPU. Some applications like Maxon's benchmarks are only available as 64-bit applications.

Last and not least, you can't buy the Pipo W2 like you'd do with an iPad. You have to take a punt and order it online from a Chinese web retailer. And Pipomall's terms and conditions can be pretty stringent.

Final verdict

Unlike some of its competitors, the Pipo W2 doesn't compromise on the hardware and delivers the type of performance you'd expect from a five-year old tablet but at a fraction of the price.

Indeed, you will be hard pressed to find even an Android tablet with this sort of configuration. The nearest Android tablet we've come across, the Google's Nexus 7 (2013 edition), costs nearly twice that price albeit with a higher-res display and a few minor improvements.

This is the cheapest new computer on the market that runs Windows and comes ready to run out of the box. Add a monitor, a keyboard and mouse and you've got a fully functional desktop computer as well.

The W2 shows how fast and far the market has evolved since the beginning of the year. The Schenker Element 10.1, which we reviewed recently and sports almost the same hardware bar a bigger display, costs nearly twice as much.

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.