Tesco Hudl review

The Hudl is a bit of a revelation, but only the price will wow you

Tesco Hudl review
Every Hudl helps

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When stacked up spec-for-spec against the new Google Nexus 7, the Tesco Hudl loses out in almost every respect. But really, that's not a fair comparison.

With a £120 price tag Tesco is competing in a category that's typically populated by cheap and not-so-cheerful knock-offs and massively compromised also-rans. When viewed in that light, the Hudl is a bit of a revelation, with solid build quality and respectable performance across the board.

What's more, with stock Android 4.2.2 included alongside ample storage potential and a surprisingly sharp 1440 x 900 7-inch display, we'd argue that the Hudl is a more compelling package than the more-expensive Amazon Kindle Fire HD.

If you can stretch to £200, we'd still recommend the Google Nexus 7 as the best pound-for-pound tablet on the market. If you're looking at spending closer to half that, though, we can't see any compact tablet out there that tops the Hudl.

We liked

The Tesco Hudl is well specced given its low price point, with a solid construction and a decent 7-inch display.

Stock Android is still rare enough that it's worthy of mention here as a stand-out feature, with Tesco wisely keeping its tinkering to a minimum.

This is a well connected device too, with microSD and Micro-HDMI slots adding expansion and connectivity options that you don't always get in compact tablets.

We disliked

The Hudl may have an ostensibly fast quad-core CPU, but it doesn't always show in general performance. Intensive apps and games, too, can make it chug a little.

In addition, the Hudl's 3.2MP camera is so poor it almost wasn't worth including, and the tablet's defining Tesco modifications aren't sufficient to differentiate it from rival devices.

Despite being a decent tablet, we have to come back to the fact that £80 more buys you a far superior tablet in the Nexus 7 - things like white balance, resolution and design still matter to a lot of people if they're going to be using the tablet regularly.

Final verdict

If you're looking to jump aboard the tablet bandwagon but have been put off by the prohibitive cost of trusted brands at one end and the questionable pedigree at the other, the Hudl is the perfect device for you.

At £120 it's a fair bit cheaper than the Amazon Kindle Fire HD, yet we think it's a more complete tablet overall thanks largely to the presence of stock Android.

You'll get some surprisingly accomplished components for your money, including a decent HD display and decent storage, while even some occasionally underwhelming performance and an atrocious camera can't erode its bargain status.

A great tablet from Tesco for the price - and that's what it is: a tablet that doesn't wow until you see the ridiculously low price tag. We can see this being under many a tree this Christmas, and we doubt there will be many disappointed faces.