- Page 1 Motorola Xoom 2
- Page 2 More Design, Connectivity and Storage
- Page 3 Android 3.2 Honeycomb and Incoming Ice Cream Sandwich
- Page 4 Touchscreen, Display and Browsing
- Page 5 Performance, Apps and Video Playback
- Page 6 Camera, Value and Verdict
We wouldn’t go as far as to say the Motorola Xoom 2 is unattractive –
far from it. It’s slim, light, dense, and has cute lopped corners that
help to differentiate it from the many black Android slabs available to
buy. But its good looks are those of a TV actor rather than a movie
star. Chiselled and toned perhaps, but there’s something amiss that you
can’t instantly put your finger on.
It’s the redundant flap, the
relatively abundant seams and the overly ornate camera lens area.
However, it’s only something we notice so much because of the high
standard set in the tablet market, and build quality here is excellent –
on par with the best. Motorola claims it is splash-proof too thanks to
the entire machine’s innards being coated in water repellent. Not fit to
dunk in a bath for long periods like a Defy, perhaps, but it won’t fry as soon as it gets near water.
hardware bonuses the Xoom 2 can shout about include the use of a
standard microUSB charging socket, where several others use proprietary
solutions, and its subtle hardware buttons. There are none on the front
but a volume rocker and power button are to be found on the back right
edge, where they fall neatly under your fingers. The Xoom 2 can charge
over a USB connection to a computer, as well as the included AC adaptor.
expandable memory or a full-size USB slot, connectivity might be
considered a tad rudimentary, but it excels on the wireless front. The
Motorola Xoom 2 has a built-in IR transmitter, which can be used with
apps like Dijit to turn the tablet into a universal remote. Most Android
devices would need an IR accessory such as Griffin’s £40 Beacon to
achieve the same effect. Dijit is no replacement for a high-end Logitech
Harmony remote at this point, though. The interface is simple enough,
but the setup process isn’t.
The Xoom 2 is also a bit obsessed
with wireless transfer of files. Using the MotoCast desktop app, you can
stream and download files from your computer over a Wi-Fi connection, or from anywhere round the world if you leave your PC on.
The installation files for this software are included on the tablet
itself, showing up as a discrete 70MB drive when plugged in.
The simple Motocast UI, en Francais
you can only freely transfer files to the rest of the internal memory
using a cable once this software has been installed, seriously hampering
the plug and play versatility of the device. We’d much prefer the
simplicity of a mass storage mode – which would make the 16GB of
internal memory (12GB user accessible) show up as a disk drive as soon
as you plug the Xoom 2 in – but there is no such mode here. More storage
black marks for Motorola.