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Tuesday, 5 February 2013


Spice Mi-1010 Stellar Pad

There is a plethora of Android-based budget phones and tablets being released in the market and most are affordably priced keeping the mass user demand in mind. 7- inch tablets were the first to be seen around as the hottest selling ones and with the further price cuts on the hardware, we are now seeing large screen and dual-core tablets too. We have recently reviewed a few large-screen budget Android tablets and did find a few worthy ones. This time we have the Spice Stellar Pad MI-1010 in our labs. By the looks and the hardware specs, it does look promising. Let’s check out if it really lives up to our expectations.

10-inch IPS panel with 1280 x 800 pixel resolution

Design and build
Holding it upfront, one could mistake it for an iPad from afar, but what gives it away is the 16:9 wide screen and the missing Home button. The MI-1010 has a beautiful looking design with rounded edges and a matte-finished silver metal back panel. The front panel is completely covered edge-to-edge by the display’s protective glass with no buttons whatsoever. The rear panel sports the 3 megapixel camera and two stereo speakers. About an inch from the bottom of the rear panel is a split, made of plastic to make way for the wireless network’s operation. The right side houses the power jack, a microUSB PC interface, a miniHDMI port, a microSD card slot and the audio jack. Two miniature holes are also visible, one each for the reset switch and the microphone. The top features the volume rocker and the power button. The tablet measures 259 mm and 174 mm in width and height respectively and is 10 mm thick.  The tablet is pretty heavy at 667 grams. 

Metal rear panel with matte finish
Spice Mi-1010 Stellar Pad

The Spice Stellar Pad MI-1010 is powered by a dual-core 1.5GHz processor and a MALI-400 GPU. It has 1GB of RAM and sports an internal storage of 16GB, expandable up to 32 GB via microSD card. The display featured here is an HD 10-inch LCD IPS panel that has a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels and an aspect ratio of 16:9. The display also allows 10-point multi-touch for use in games and apps that require multi-finger inputs or gestures. The operating system installed on the Spice Stellar MI-1010 is Android Jelly Bean version 4.1.

microUSB, microSD card slot, miniHDMI on the right

The MI-1010 has two cameras—the main rear shooter with a 3 mega-pixel resolution and the front facing camera, which is a standard 0.3 MP. Connectivity options include Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n wireless networking and a microUSB PC interface with OTG support for 3G dongles, input devices and external storage drives. The power source for the tablet is a sufficient 7600mAh Li-ion Polymer battery. Additional features include GPS and a G sensor. What we found missing is the Bluetooth option.

Volume rocker and power button on the top

User interface
The MI-1010 has a stock tablet user interface. The tablet is actually powered by a dual-core 1.5GHz processor, but the manufacturer has overclocked the processor marginally and left it at a maximum 1.6GHz. We did find the user interface still a tad jittery, but it goes unnoticed while swiping around the interface with speed. Overclocking the processor has also left the tablet overheating slightly, but after a fairly prolonged use, the tablet did not become unstable or freeze. This means that the processor has been safely overclocked. Overall, the user interface is smooth enough and we don’t have any complaints here. Lastly, the manufacturer has included a few free apps for productivity and entertainment. We did notice a very annoying fact – when the tablet is powered on or shut down, the start-up and shut-down music by the manufacturer in the ROM is extremely loud and shrill and there is no way you can reduce the volume. So if you want to start up or shut down the tablet in a silent zone, or when all are asleep at night, you might have to plug in the earphones to shunt the audio to the earphones. Removing the audio would require rooting the tablet and disabling or deleting the audio tracks from the operating system folder. 

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