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Dell Venue 10 7000 Series Review: Convertible Tablet

Subject: Mobile
Manufacturer: Dell

Introduction

The Dell Venue 10 7000 Series tablet features a stunning 10.5" OLED screen and is designed to mate perfectly with the optional keyboard. So how does it perform as both a laptop and a tablet? Read on for the full review!

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To begin with I will simply say the keyboard should not be an optional accessory. There, I've said it. As I used the Venue 10 7000, which arrived bundled with the keyboard, I was instantly excited about this design. The Venue 10 is a device that is as remarkable for its incredible screen as much as any other feature, but once coupled with the magnetically attached keyboard becomes something more - and quite different than existing implementations of the transforming tablet. More than a simple accessory the keyboard felt like it was really a part of the device when connected, and made it feel like a real laptop.

I'm getting way ahead of myself here so let's go back to the beginning, and back to a world where one might consider purchasing this tablet by itself. At $499 for the 16GB model you might reasonably ask how it compares to the identically-priced Apple iPad Air 2. Well, most of the comparison is going to be software/app related as the Venue 10 7000 is running Android 5.1 Lollipop, and of course the iPad runs iOS. The biggest difference between these tablets (besides the keyboard integration) becomes the 10.5-inch, 2560x1600 OLED screen, and oh what a screen it is!

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Continue reading our review of the Dell Venue 10 7000 convertible tablet!!

The Dell Venue 10 features a display so bright, so rich, so... OLED, that it could only have been made from that technology. Colors pop and blacks are infinitely black. It's an absolutely stunning display, and while I suspect the color is not as accurate as an iPad's well-calibrated IPS display (more on this later), I didn't care when I was using it. You need to see one of these Venue 10 displays in person to decide if you prefer the vivid, highly saturated colors and seemingly infinite contrast.

Before going further, let's check out the full specs which are, not surprisingly, very similar to those of the Venue 8 7000:

  Dell Venue 10 7000 (Model 7040)
Processor Intel Atom Z3580 Quad-Core 2.33 GHz
Graphics PowerVR G6430
Memory 2GB LPDDR3-1600
Screen 2560x1600 OLED 10.5-in (288 ppi)
Storage 16GB or 32GB eMMC
MicroSD Slot (up to 512GB)
Camera 8MP Rear + Dual 720p Depth
2MP Front
Wireless Intel 7260 802.11ac 1x1 Dual Band
Bluetooth 4.0
Connection USB 2.0 (power and data)
Headphone jack
Battery 26.6 Whr
7000 mAh
Dimensions 243.36mm x 195.43mm x 6.2mm
9.58" x 7.69" x 0.24"
597g (1lb 5.1oz)
OS Android 5.0.1 (5.1 after OTA update)
Price $499 MSRP (16GB) $549 MSRP (32GB)

Our thanks to Dell for providing the Venue 10 7000 for our review!

First Impressions

We've seen the screen, but how does the rest of the tablet look? The industrial design is very polished with excellent fit and finish throughout, and the aluminum and glass construction provides a solid, if a slightly hefty, feel. 

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With the keyboard attached this is still a slim device from the front at about 1/2" thick (0.24" without keyboard). Around back we see the approx. 3/4" round design with speakers and keyboard mounts, and this reaches 1" thick with the keyboard in place.

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The view from the side shows just how much thicker the back of the tablet is, and we also get a look at I/O with the Venue 10 7000. On this first side we have a standard micro USB port and a 3.5mm combo headphone/mic port.

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And on the other side we have the volume and sleep/wake buttons and a micro SD card slot (via removable tray that looks like a SIM card slot).

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The body of the Venue 10 7000 looks very good and has a nice matte finish. It was still a fingerprint magnet, however.

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You might notice the multiple cameras on the back, as the Venue 10 7000 features an integrated Intel RealSense Depth Camera, a technology that allows for "measurement, refocus, and selective filters with a touch of a finger".

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The screen is well protected with Gorilla Glass 3, but is quite glossy

Next we'll take a closer look at the keyboard, and see how the well the Venue 10 7000 works as both a laptop and a tablet.


August 24, 2015 | 01:47 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

This really needs a storage slot such as a microsd. I think if they sold this with Windows 10, this would make a killer mini laptop.

August 25, 2015 | 08:17 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

It has a MicroSD slot.

August 25, 2015 | 01:16 PM - Posted by Sebastian Peak

It does, and I completely forgot about that!

August 24, 2015 | 03:11 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

spyware

August 24, 2015 | 03:15 PM - Posted by Gunbuster

That price is bananas, you would need to be on some good drugs to choose this android tablet over a Surface 3.

64GB Surface 3 and keyboard: $629

This crazy thing and keyboard:$838

August 25, 2015 | 06:54 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Got that right !

August 28, 2015 | 08:12 PM - Posted by Oubadah

The screen is the big difference there.

August 24, 2015 | 07:09 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

OMG let's strip down the performance to sub-netbook levels and charge dearly for the chance to own such a gimped down SKU. No it's a jack of all trades and an expert at none! What about getting one with Linux Mint, and as Carrizo APU. I'll wait for the K12/Carrizo equlivent, and maybe a Steam OS based gaming tablet! Can this be any more overpriced!

August 25, 2015 | 12:59 AM - Posted by korben44 (not verified)

How is this overpriced Android tablet given a silver award? Battery life is terrible, yet seems to be ok considering it's a convertible Android tablet with an OLED screen? Throw Windows 10 on there and you'll have a decent option. And in the conclusion, I like how you throw in the awkward kickstand reference... Is that to say the Surface series has such a kickstand? The only instance in which that would be true is if you're trying to use the Surface in your lap. How often is that done? Especially when you're trying to be productive? Please, don't try to tell me you, as a responder to my comment, always do productive work using your lap. I don't think that the work you are doing is that productive at all, if that's the case.

My main beef is the inability of a reviewer to not rate a product bad just because a company sent them it. Have the guts to actually say what you think, which you sort of did in the beginning of your conclusion. That was until you salvaged the attempt by photoshoping your statement to make this tablet look better than it actually does.

August 25, 2015 | 10:03 AM - Posted by Sebastian Peak

Why not? I always use my laptop in my lap, as I have a desktop for more serious work (photo editing, etc.). Why is that an unusual case? Sitting back in the sofa or sitting up in bed writing? There are tons of people who use laptops on tables (at the coffee shop, at home on a table or desk) and are fine with a kickstand, but I've never been this way. You clearly disagree but I don't consider a device to be truly portable it if needs a table to function. For this reason I find the Surface kickstand to be inadequate.

It's easier to accuse a writer of bias than it is to objectively review a product on its own merit. Is the Venue 10 too expensive? Yes. I would expect an Android tablet to cost $100 or so less than Surface/iPad. I mentioned in the review that I wished it ran Windows, that I wanted to use the device running Windows, and made the Android OS my biggest complaint throughout. I called it a flawed product but pointed out the incredible hardware design, which really is first rate and if I could get a Surface with this hinge I'd do it today.

I also urged readers to try it out before buying as the Android OS on a tablet isn't for everyone. If you read through the conclusion I explained my position. Disagree as you do, but blithely calling me prejudiced is uninformed at best. You have the same need to pander to Dell as I, as long as that is zero.

August 26, 2015 | 05:22 AM - Posted by korben44 (not verified)

These are the things that need to be included in the review. Perspective, along with the reviewer's opinion make for a better overall picture. While I do agree that people use laptops\convertibles in their laps, being productive with it is another thing. Even if you can type while in your lap, is that a preferred method for extended sessions? Have you done a multipage review while holding a laptop in just your lap? I have, and it's certainly no fun. Which brings us back to the surface and it's kickstand. The stand makes it a productive machine while not in your lap, but the ability to use the touch interface makes it portable and easy enough to use for quick lap jobs. And none of that makes the Surface a truly portable device...? In your opinion. What is, then? A MacBook? MacBook Air? Any other traditional laptop? The MacBook and Air have no touchscreens available... In my opinion that makes them not truly portable devices.

Maybe an idea for a review for you to cover, is one where you try to find the prime device to fit in this 'truly portable' category. I think you'll find that such a device doesn't exist, since arguments can be made about any product to the contrary of what you are set out to prove.

While this Dell Android tablet is of very high quality in build, it's more of a proof of concept product. Will it sell well? I don't think so, do you? If it won't sell well, why would you make it other than to say you can?

August 28, 2015 | 08:32 PM - Posted by Oubadah

Sebastian, how clean was the headphone jack? I saw complaints about noise in the Venue 8 7000, and this kind of thing is a deal breaker for me. Was there any noise, especially with low impedance IEMs.

PS. There's a typo on the last page: "through".

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