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Tuesday
Aug132013

Review: ASUS MeMO 7 HD

Text and photos by Gadjo Cardenas Sevilla

The 7-inch tablet space is surging right now. Prices are diving down and features are becoming increasingly more impressive and useful. Many of the key PC manufacturers have a dog in this fight and some like ASUS, have many. The maker of the two previous Nexus 7's has also released a cheaper and more consumer friendly model in the ASUS MeMO 7 HD which is now selling in Canada for $159. 

The ASUS MeMO 7 HD feels and looks very similar to the 2012 Nexus 7. This device uses more plastic, doesn't have a grippy rubber finish on the backplate but its dimensions are nearly identical to ASUS bestselling Android tablet. So, why mess with the formula?

The ASUS MeMO 7 HD really takes the best aspects of a successful product and brings it down to an even more affordable price point while adding the features that users have been requesting. 

So, while you don't get the Pure Android experience, the MeMO 7HD ships with the latest Android Jelly Bean 4.2 OS but spiked with some bloatware from ASUS. 

Specs are respectable and included a 1.2 GHz quad core processor, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of onboard storage (with 16GB of free cloud storage from ASUS). It also has a 1.2MP front facing camera and a 5MP rear camera.  The ASUS MeMO 7 HD has microSD expansion (up to 32GB). The rear camera and the microSD expansion slot make the ASUS MeMO 7 HD more versatile than the 2012 Nexus 7.

ASUS understands what resonates with consumers, aside from the great spec sheets and features, the MeMO 7 HD comes in various colours (white, pink, green, blue and gray) which fits into the popular trend with smartphones and tablets offering colour variety in their products. Our blue review unit looked quite understated.

The ASUS MeMO 7 HD is a capable tablet, one that will run the gamut of Android applications. It may be a great companion for someone with a feature phone or a less powerful smartphone who wants a more capable device and a larger screen. Speaking of screens, the IPS screen of the MeMO HD isn't as vivid or striking as that of the 2012 Nexus 7 but is still better than a number of screens we've seen on entry level tablets.

Oaverall quality is good although the shiny plastic material surrounding the bezel feels cheap and is subject to chipping. Aside from this, the ASUS MeMO 7 HD should satisfy most users for most purposes. 

Comparing the ASUS MeMO 7 HD to the competition and it looks like a really good value. It is in fact a good value when you stack it up against the more expensive Nexus 7 (2013) and even the slightly larger Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.0. ASUS has really created a great all around 7-inch tablet at a price that just cannot be beat.

The bespoke overlay and the ASUS apps may not be everyone's cup of tea, but if you can look beyond that, this is the 7-inch Android tablet that can satisfy the majority of users.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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