Review: Linx 1010b Tablet

This Review of the Linx 1010b first appeared in June 2016 and was updated in January and September 2017. It still gets used a lot… even to write this article.

A couple of years ago, I decided that I needed a half decent tablet with a keyboard; I got myself a Linx 1010b tablet and keyboard.

Android tablets are good, but the little things with them started to annoy me. I was a fan of a small British company A1CS (later F5CS) who offered some budget Android tablets like the Fusion5 range, but Android then went and changed the Bluetooth support and suddenly the Bluetooth keyboards around the house stopped working with it.

Even now, having just purchased a more mainstream tablet for one of my daughters; Bluetooth keyboards don’t even talk well will the likes of a Samsung Galaxy Tab.

As much as I was using a tablet, I wanted to use it like a small laptop as well, so I had to buy keyboards and converters for the micro USB sockets that you invariably got with these cheaper units. That was not the whole idea and when the battery life started to falter I started to look elsewhere.

The Linx 1010b Tablet - Image served by AmazonSo when it came up as a Deal of the Day on Amazon I decided to go Windows and get the Linx 1010B 10.1 inch Tablet & keyboard.

I don’t need a 10 inch device to be too powerful, all I used the Android tablet was surfing the web, drafting articles like this one and watching videos. I sometimes have to use it to do some minor coding and accessing cpanel; but that is when I get desperate!

If I want to do anything like database work, website coding and the like; I prefer my MSI laptop or custom-build desktop with plenty of good screen estate.

So is the Linx 10 worth the money you printed to pay for it? At the moment, I say YES IT IS and this is why.

Specification

This might be a tablet computer but it is not a £50 bargain bucket Android.

It ships with an Intel Atom Z3735 processor which you also find in some of the Acer, HP and Lenovo ranges, and capable of 1.33Ghz (with Intel Burst taking this to 1.83Ghz) you won’t be playing PlayerUnknown’s BattleGrounds, but will let you write your memoirs and edit photos using GIMP.

On board you also have 2GB of RAM, capable of running some decent multi-tasking and Intel HD graphics.

The Linx 10 does however come with a paltry 32GB hard drive. Disappointingly, that is mostly going to be taken up with Windows 10 so you need something more for your spreadsheets and GIF. The plus side is that the Linx 1010b also comes with a MicroSD slot, currently filled with a 64GB card for selected local copies of OneDrive and Google Drive.

Windows 10

My Linx 10 came with Windows 8 installed but within a few minutes of being connected to my fibre broadband and setting up my Microsoft account; it was offering me the free Windows 10 upgrade. I am already an advocate of Windows 10 so that was always going to be task one.

The Windows 10 experience both as a tablet and a notebook are just as fluid as I would expect on any other device, there are no conflicts or compatibility problems that I can see, the windows key on the keyboard and the windows button on the screen bezel both work and Cortana works well.

What Others Have Said

Since buying the Linx, I have kept half an eye on the Amazon reviews for it. Although there are some there are probably paid reviews/free items/trolls there are also some genuine sounding complaints. It is obviously a good idea for me to offer my take on them based on my experience with my 1010b:

  • Slow Charging – yes I think that sometimes I find the tablet charging slower than I would expect, but I do also leave it charging overnight and that often gives me most of a days use.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity problems – some people said that when their Linx woke up from sleep then it would refuse to connect to a wi-fi connection. I have never noticed that other than with some of the free hotspots you get where you need to log in. I have the same problems with my Android 5.1 mobile phone though.
  • It is not a 1.83Ghz Processor – You are right… and you are wrong. One of the great things with this particular processor is that Intel use Burst Technology so when the processor is not very taxed it will save battery by running along at 1.33Ghz but if you are doing something that calls for more then you get the extra.More importantly  when you hear “well I should have got the Lenovo/Medion/Acer/Asus….” then sorry, many of their models use exactly the same processor.

A Tablet that Lasts All Day

One of the most interesting issues is that the tablet is slow to charge. What that gives you though is a tablet that lasts all day as well.

So right now I am editing this section using the Linx 1010b. Since the last full charge, I have:

  • Watched 3 hours of video files, stored on the SD card, using headphones to listen tot he accompanying audio
  • After two hours of of video the device was shut down (and obviously requiring additional battery to boot up again)
  • The keyboard was connected throughout – pressing the space bar for pause and unpause is far easier than waking the touchscreen
  • The screen was at full brightness throughout

I still have 45% of battery remaining and estimating around 3 hours of use left. Estimating the amount that I have already done with it that would suggest a 6 hour battery life on moderate video watching use. Obviously this does not take into account any connection to Wi-Fi as well.

but now a Linx 1010b Top Tip 

When you charge your tablet overnight, remember in the morning to check that it is shut down. It does not always happen to me, but the tablet sometimes boots up when you plug in to charge. Then when you unplug it it does not always hibernate when idle… then you get a dead battery,

The Linx Keyboard

So what is really good about the Linx is that unlike most tablets it has a dedicated docking keyboard available. You might have seen these features in the adverts for the Microsoft Surface range where you can get a keyboard which also acts as a cover.

This is one of the problems that I have found with the Linx 1010b though. The keyboard can be temperamental when you adjust the tilt of the screen and the connection can get interrupted. the problem is that sometimes the tablet gets confused and the keyboard will indicate that it is connected, but the keyboard will not work.

Unfortunately this then means that you need to reboot the tablet to restore the connection; which works every time.

A Case

It was not long after buying the Linx that I knew I needed a case. It is really easy to slip it in and out of a messenger bag or if you have a Regatta jacket with really big pockets I can attest that it fits in them too.

The problem is then that I will take it out, do 10 minutes of work and put it away again; it will get scratched and damaged, and there are cases on Amazon for it.

Using a case for the tablet also solves another problem and that is the power button on the tablet half of the device. The button stands proud of the tablet housing which means that if something knocks it while it is in a bag then the screen will turn on and you don’t know about it.

There have been a number of times when I have not used the case and the tablet has depleted it’s battery. Connecting it to a back-up battery is usually a safe option while I am working, or a wall charger when I am not.

Would I buy the Linx 1010b Again?

I probably would, actually. I know that people will not like a cheap tablet because it is not the super computer that they need, but that is not what I would be using it for.

I will probably need to buy a new keyboard at some point as I am not entirely convinced that the dock will not break. The tablet itself though seem sturdy enough to keep me going.

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