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Pandigital's Nova Android Tablet Comes to Best Buy for Only $170

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Aug 2, 2011.

  1. dgstorm
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    dgstorm Editor in Chief Staff Member Premium Member

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    [​IMG]

    This appears to be a decent deal for an Android 2.3 powered, 7-inch tablet. You can get Pandigital's Nova Android tablet at Best Buy for only $170 bucks. Here's a recap of its specs, which seem none to shabby for this inexpensive little device:
    • 800MHz processor,
    • 4GB of internal storage
    • ActiveTouch display with 800x600 resolution
    • Connects directly to the Barnes and Noble bookstore
    • Front and rear-facing cameras
    • 802.11 b/g/n wireless capabilities
    • Built-in microSD card slot and a micro HDMI port
    • Packed within a frame that's half-an-inch thick
    This seems like a worthy addition to the lower-end Android market segment. What do you guys think?

    Source: AndroidTablets.net via Engadget and Best Buy
  2. AuxiliaryPie
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    AuxiliaryPie New Member

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    is this the same as the pandigital planet? the specs seem to be the same and it looks awfully similar... i ask because kohls sells the planet and we have an employee day coming up where i get 35% off :D
  3. johnomaz
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    johnomaz Well-Known Member

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    Looks decent. Wonder if it can be rooted/rom'd.
  4. anuraj1
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    anuraj1 New Member

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    Anyone know if this is capacitive or resistive?
  5. regkilla
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    regkilla New Member

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    If it can be overclocked to at least 1.2 GHZ that would be sweet!
  6. gadgetrants
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    gadgetrants Well-Known Member

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    Probably not the Planet...no mention of a camera on the Planet, and the Nova seems to have better overall specs (Gingerbread, more memory, etc.).

    Some things to consider (I owned the original PD Novel, btw):

    - Does history repeat itself? There are a few enraged Novel owners over at slatedroid, plotting ways to get Pandigital to give up the source code for the PDN. A year ago, everyone thought it was a breakout device (esp. for $150) and with a little help from PDN, could be easily modified. Pandigital pretty much ignored the owners and abandoned development of the device.

    - Touchscreen is probably resistive. WTH is "Active Touch"??? The Novel and the Planet are both resistive. When I owned the Novel--in contrast to my beautiful OG Droid--I just couldn't take resistive. If the Nova is the same, I'd say "fuggedaboutit."

    - As we all know, NO-VA means NO-GO. ;) Not a name that inspires confidence.

    No offense to others with different-sized budgets, but I REALLY advise staying away from tablets under $300--especially if not built by a mainstream maker (Toshiba, Samsung, Asus, etc.). From July to December of 2010, there was a slew of cheap Chinese imports at the $100-$200 price point that just turned into a giant headache for most owners. If you really want to play with and tweak your device, I suggest investing a few more dollars, and making sure there is a healthy ROM community (xda, slatedroid, androidtablets, etc.) in place to support the device.

    BTW, my current tablet is the Viewsonic 10" gTab (dual-core Tegra). Viewing angles suck but it's fast and runs a very nice Honeycomb alpha.

    -Matt
  7. N4UPD
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    N4UPD New Member

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    I want a tablet that will let me use aptoide and other alternative market apps.Does Honeycomb support this? If not froyo or gingerbread tablet is way to go until you can use alternative market apps on Honeycomb.
  8. czerdrill
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    czerdrill New Member

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    It's resistive I believe, I'd stay away...
  9. gadgetrants
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    gadgetrants Well-Known Member

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  10. debdroid1a
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    debdroid1a New Member

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    I don't think I'd advise anyone to stay away.

    For someone, like me, who wants a basic eReader with additional features, these are pretty good.

    I wanted just a small, simple tablet. One to read books on, play a few games, watch some videos (maybe and I have) and view my crochet patterns on. I didn't plan on rooting or anything else. I don't have wifi at home or work, so internet access wasn't an issue.
    I wanted a simple, small 7" tablet. Under $200. (my budget--and only that high if that's all I could find)

    The only I could find, after looking at 3 places, was a Cruz T301. No, not the best, but it works for what I want it to. Had it for a week and a half and it still works. I mostly sideload apps, but I tried Wifi at a mcdonalds (only place i could find wifi) and it worked fine. This is how I got my Kindle books on there. No real market, but again, I've sideloaded a few and that works for me.

    This one looks better, feature wise, then the T301.

    So far I've been happy with my "cheap" tablet.
  11. anuraj1
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    anuraj1 New Member

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    My rooted Nook Color is treating me very well, but I constantly get asked by novices if I can do that for them if they buy an NC. I rooted after a lot of research and after doing it manually through ADB on the D1. I don't feel right doing it for someone that has no idea what it is, and that will come to me for every little problem (as callous as that sounds, it sucks).

    That's why I was interested in this, to steer people towards a cheap alternative that already comes working as a tablet out of the box. But a resistive screen is a dealbreaker for me.
  12. Stormy Knight
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    Stormy Knight New Member

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  13. gadgetrants
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    gadgetrants Well-Known Member

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    Hi Deb! Based on my experiences with the Nook Color, I'd say your feature-list fits the new Nook Touch pretty well, and at $139 that's competitive with the Pandigital and Cruz alternatives (which are much clunkier/heavier as eReaders). The main feature you lose with the Touch is color (plus it's a 6" screen), but based on my experiences with the wonderful Nook Color, if the Touch is as well-built, it's a bargain at that price. Of course what sets the Touch apart--again, assuming it's built like the Color--is the ability to root and really customize. Otherwise, if the goal is to "use as is" it still looks pretty solid.

    [​IMG]

    Barnes & Noble Nook Touch Review

    -Matt
  14. gruvychic
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    gruvychic New Member

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    I'm a novice when it comes to these devices...as in I only started looking at e-reader devices available a few days ago. The Nook Color looked good, but a bit more than I really wanted to pay. Then I saw this Pandigital Nova in best buy's paper and thought it looked like a good option. I'll primarily use it for reading books. But would also like to have a few apps and be able to play movies. Can you load the digital copies of DVD's on here? Something like that would be AWESOME to keep my little guy occupied at a dr office or grocery shopping. I'd also read somewhere that the Nook can only load B&N apps and such and not regular Droid apps unless you do something to it. I assume that's what rooting is??? So I thought maybe the Nova might be more flexible in that area? If the Nook is significantly better, then I'll just wait until I can buy that. I'd rather wait to get one than regret the purchase and financially be stuck with what I have.

    Some guidance would be greatly appreciated.
  15. gadgetrants
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    gadgetrants Well-Known Member

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    If you can find someone to help you with the process of installing a custom ROM, I'd really recommend the Nook Color. It's amazing how easy it is to hold, how bright and clear the screen is. It's still hovering at $250, but I think with Black Friday coming you'll see it for $199 (I made it $199 instead of $200 for dramatic effect!).

    I get bent out of shape when people call the NC an eReader. It really is a fabulous Android tablet that happens be marketed as an eReader. By the way, by rooting and installing a custom ROM (at this point, you have the choice of Eclair, Froyo, and I think also Gingerbread), I understand the only functionality you LOSE is the 1-hour book-loan inside B&N stores. You can otherwise do everything you could on a stock NC.

    Oh, also: I bought my wife a 16GB microSD card, and it has between 12-20 movies that she watches on the NC (converted from DVD rip to MP4 with Handbrake...I have a how-two posted somewhere if you need it).

    -Matt
  16. DroidXDoes4G
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    DroidXDoes4G New Member

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    Not great specs...but good for the price.

    Sent from my DROID3 using DroidForums
  17. gruvychic
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    gruvychic New Member

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    Is installing a ROM difficult? I'm not totally un-tech savy. I used to work as an analyst for an insurance software company before having kids. I just don't know much about tablets and such.
  18. debdroid1a
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    debdroid1a New Member

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    I tried to google and see, but since it's so new, nobody has anything on that.

    It probably can. My Cruz T301 can play movies. I do have to convert them. Usually the digital copies of movies on DVD's are for iThingy's. I convert to an .MP4 and found that .mpeg4 works on mine (as well as others according to the box).

    This is one reason why I wanted a color tablet (black and white wouldn't work). Also for other items I need in color.

    Maybe a trip to best buy (call first to see if they have one, have them hold it for you too) and see what the specs on the box or display say.

    Then again, a rooted color nook might be what you want. So also look into that.
  19. gadgetrants
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    gadgetrants Well-Known Member

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    I haven't played with our Nook Color in a while (my wife hides it!), but the process is basically:

    (1) Download various files (utilities, ROM file, etc.)
    (2) Copy ROM to sdcard
    (3) Put sdcard in device and reboot

    For a lot of devices, there is a built-in recovery program that detects the custom ROM and installs it as if it were a normal update. :) It's usually that easy.

    Still, along the way some users get temporarily stuck (I hang out out androidtablets and slatedroid). It's usually because they skipped a step in the process, or didn't read through it a few times. You can also check out youtube videos which really help. If you're ambitious, you can also make it more complicated too--for example, many Nook Color owners get stuck trying to install ADB (Android Debug Bridge) on their PC, which allows more control of Android devices.

    I wish I had a $1 for every self-described "non-techie" person I've seen who said "I can't believe how easy it was!" Check out reviews of the Transformer, Xoom, and gTab on Amazon and you'll see lots of testimonials to installing custom ROMs.

    -Matt
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