Tesco Hudl review

2 Oct 2013

Tesco gets all the basics right with its low-budget break into compact tablets, but the Hudl lacks gaming grunt

Price when reviewed: 
119(£119 inc VAT)more
4

The Tesco Hudl enters a compact-tablets market where even the famously cutthroat supermarket would find it hard to drive down prices. Despite capable devices such as the Barnes & Noble Nook HD already selling for less than £100, Tesco doesn't get its ticket price below three figures. However, an offer to buy the tablet for only £60 worth of Tesco Clubcard vouchers will pique the interest of the supermarket's regular shoppers.

British high-street retailers don't have a great track record when it comes to launching bespoke tablet hardware. The Next tablet was one of the most shameful pieces of landfill we've ever encountered, while Asda's range of tablets had no effect on our pulse rates.

The Hudl, however, makes an excellent first impression. It arrives in an elegant box that Apple wouldn't be ashamed to pop an iPad in, and the device itself continues to belie the budget price.

The rubberised back panel and symmetrical rear-speaker grilles add a dash of style, and although the glossy black strip running around the perimeter and the thick bezel around the screen are less enticing, it's by no means a device you'd be embarrassed to be seen with in public – despite the discreet Tesco logo etched into the back.

It isn't the lightest compact tablet we've ever handled. At 376g, the Hudl is almost a third heavier than the new Nexus 7, and it's chunkier, too, but feels substantial and well put together.

Tesco has thought sensibly about accessories, too, providing a range of rubberised cases (£15 inc VAT) that double as a stand, and headphones. The case pushes the weight to more than 500g, though, which is just about bearable for a compact tablet.

Tesco hudl

Tablets live or die by their screens, and here Tesco has done a remarkably good job. The 1,440 x 900 resolution is a tier below the Nexus 7's 1,920 x 1,200 display, but it certainly doesn't want for sharpness, nor brightness or contrast: our colorimeter recorded perfectly healthy scores of 349cd/m2 for brightness and a contrast ratio of 873:1. Colour accuracy is spot on, too, with skin tones and shadows well preserved in both photos and videos.

Detail

Price ex VAT £99
Price inc VAT £119
Warranty 1 yr return to base
Overall rating 4
Performance 3
Features & Design 4
Value for Money 5

Physical

Dimensions 193 x 10.3 x 129mm (WDH)
Weight 376g

Display

Primary keyboard On-screen
Screen size 7.0in
Resolution screen horizontal 1,440
Resolution screen vertical 900
Display type IPS
Panel technology IPS

Core specifications

CPU frequency, MHz 1.5GHz
Integrated memory 16.0GB
RAM capacity 1,000MB

Camera

Camera megapixel rating 3.0mp
Focus type Autofocus
Built-in flash? no
Front-facing camera? yes
Video capture? yes

Other

Integrated GPS yes
Upstream USB ports 0
HDMI output? yes