- Nov 25, 2012
THE GOOD: the Cube iWork 8 3G has mobile network connectivity, and a much larger battery than the original iWork 8 Dual Boot Edition, which we reviewed last month.
THE BAD: Only 24GB was allocated to Windows 8.1 OS, making it almost impossible not to insert a Micro SD card into the slate.
THE BOTTOM LINE: The Cube iWork 8 3G is a wonderful tablet with lots of functions, delivering decent data speeds and other improvements, and arguably the best tablet below the $100 price point.
Though it hasn't even been a quarter since the Cube iWork 8 Dual Boot Edition was released, a successor has already come along to take its place. The Cube iWork 8 3G is nearly identical in design, but don't let its looks fool you, as the new tablet brings a number of changes under the hood. It contains a much larger 5,000mAh Li-Po battery and you get 3G connectivity, which could come in handy if you need to do a lot of traveling.
If you already own a Windows tablet, we wouldn't say this is a necessary upgrade, especially since the Android side occupies 8GB of the precious internal storage, leaving only 24GB to Windows 8.1 and less than 12GB at your free disposal. However, if you're in the market for a new tablet, you won’t go wrong with the iWork 8 3G, instead, I believe it should be one of your top picks.
Cube iWork 8 Dual Boot Edition specs:
• OS: Android 4.4.4 & Windows 8.1 dual boot
• Display: 8-inch IPS, 5-point multi-touch, IGZO
• Screen Resolution: 1280 x 800 (16:10)
• CPU: Intel Atom Baytrail-T Z3735F Quad-core Processor
• CPU Frequency: 1.33GHz – 1.8GHZ
• GPU:Intel HD Graphic Gen7
• RAM / Storage: 2GB / 32GB
• Function: 3G, WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, OTG
• 3G: WCDMA 900MHz, WCDMA 2100MHz
• 2G: Network Frequency: 900MHz, 1800MHz
• WiFi: 802.11 b/g/n
• Camera: 2MP back camera, 2MP front camera
• Battery: 5,000mAh
• Extend Port: TF Card Slot, Micro SIM Card Slot, Micro USB Port, 3.5mm Headphone Jack
• Weight & Size: 360g / 214 x 133 x 10.3mm
The Cube iWork 8 3G isn't remarkably different from the original iWork 8 Dual Boot Edition in design. In fact, if you were to put the two side by side, it would be extremely difficult to tell one from the other. They're the same size at 214mm by 133mm wide (in portrait), The only noticeable difference is that the iWork 8 3G measures a little bit thicker and heavier and has a Micro SIM card slot on the left side (in landscape mode).
There are a lot of ports and slots on the left side of the slate, including a 3.5mm audio jack, a Micro USB port for hosting the USB devices, a Mini HDMI port, a Micro SD card slot and a 2.5mm DC charging port.
Also on the left side is a Power/Standby button, the volume rocker and Home Button are on the top.
The right side of the device features the aforementioned Micro SIM card slot, which is compatible with WCDMA/GSM networks.
There are also cameras on both the front and the rear of the tablet.
The Cube iWork 8 3G comes packaged with a charging cable, a USB cable, a warranty card and reference material. Unfortunately the AC adapter and the OTG adapter needs to be purchased separately.
You still get the 8-inch IPS screen, which is clearly no match for those 2K displays seen on some high-end Android tablets.
But it is still eye-catching and gorgeous, with rich colors and wonderful viewing angles.
The touch screen is responsive. It registered all our taps and swipes in both Android 4.4 and the Windows 8 interface, although we did struggle a little in the Windows 8.1 desktop as some of the apps were less touchscreen friendly.
The display’s one real weakness is the brightness adjustment in Android, you will hardly notice any change when you drag the brightness bar from 0% to 30%, which means the screen can be too bright for your eyes if you are using it in a dark room, but in Windows 8.1, it doesn’t have the same issue.
No LCD performs perfectly well in bright daylight or direct sun, but luckily the Cube iWork 8 3G is a lot better at it than normal, the 8-inch IPS panel is still quite readable outdoors except against direct mid-day sunlight.