Channel 5

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8

Tuesday 03 December 2013

G-Rating

Rating of 3

The basics

Meet the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8. This brand new Android-powered slate comes packing a hinge and a kickstand to double up on its viewing modes, just like its Windows-powered cousins. It looks stunning, has an impressive claimed battery life of 18 hours, and is a fresh take on the traditional slate. But is it enough to make it stand out from the rest of the pack? Let's find out.

Bang for your buck: The best tablets under £100

Here's our review on the brand new iPad Air!

The good

The first thing you'll notice is this slate’s classy aluminium construction. It’s just 4mm at its thinnest point, which is mighty slim, and it’s very light as well. It's also a breeze to hold - just grab hold of the cylinder at the bottom that contains the Yoga's mammoth 6,000mAh battery. This also keeps the tablet trucking for hours, so if you take it on a long plane journey, you won't be without your media. Lenovo rates the battery at around 18 hours, and we managed to squeeze out a good 13 hours on heavy usage. With careful use and optimal settings you'll likely hit the 18-hour mark, should you need it that long. In a smaller tablet, that's phenomenal.

On one side of the cylindrical bulge is the large power button that glows when you're low on battery, while on the other is the headphone jack. Flanked underneath the screen are two stereo speakers - powered by Dolby Digital Plus tech - that sound better than expected, especially on a tablet this slim and light. Connectivity-wise, you'll find the usual Bluetooth, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi and GPS on board, while Lenovo has also included a microUSB port. It’s just a shame there’s no micro-HDMI output.

Hidden round the back of the tablet is the Yoga's standout feature: its metal kickstand. You need to give the cylinder a sharp twist, then the stand locks in place with a satisfying click. It props the tablet up at an angle that’s perfect for watching movies or for video chatting. Unlike case covers that double as a stand, the Yoga's is absolutely solid, so it won't fold away when moved. That said, it’s not impervious to knocks: prod too hard, and it’ll topple over. Under the kickstand, you'll find the microSD card slot, which takes cards up to 64GB, adding to the 16GB on board.

The bad

While the Yoga Tablet 8 has excellent design and battery life, it falls flat everywhere else. Performance is abysmal. Even with its 1.2GHz quad-core processor and 1GB of RAM, it's just not quick enough to keep up with its similarly-priced peers. A simple task like swiping through the homescreen is laggy and sluggish. Even the latest Nexus 7 - which costs the same as the Yoga Tablet 8 - can handle that without a hitch, and it's pushing many more pixels.

The 1,280x800-pixel HD display is fine for gaming and browsing the web, but when reading comics and magazines, it feels a bit cramped. We found ourselves wishing we had something almost Retina-display worthy.

The slate runs Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, though Lenovo has added its own, rather ugly skin. It looks a lot like Apple's iOS, right down to the folders and "new" app icon. All your apps are found on the home screen, so if you have plenty installed, you might have to swipe through tons of pages to find the one you want. Folders tidy things up a bit, but we wish Lenovo had left us with a standard app drawer and launcher. You’ll find yourself reaching for a third-party launcher before long.

Oddly, the front facing 1.6-megapixel camera is on the left-hand side of the screen when the tablet's propped on its stand, making for oddly-angled video calls. The camera isn’t much to shout about, and neither is the five-megapixel rear shooter.

Read our review of the Lenovo Miix 10!

Here's what we thought of the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13!

The bottom line

Lenovo's Yoga Tablet 8 is great to hold, thanks to its cylindrical bulge, and the built-in stand is great for viewing media and making video calls. But its performance just isn't up to scratch and doesn't match its stylish looks. If you're after a tablet with a monster battery life but not much else, you might make do with the Yoga Tablet 8. But at £199, we're hard-pressed to recommend it over this year's Nexus 7.

Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8 is tagged with Lenovo, Lenovo Yoga Tablet 8, tablet and Android. Select a tag (Lenovo, for example) to find everything on The Gadget Show about the subject.

User comments

Be the first one to leave a comment.

Join Channel 5

Creating an account is free, will only take a few moments and will allow you to enjoy the full benefits of 5FWD and Channel 5:

  • Create lists of your most wanted and owned products
  • Leave article comments without having to re-enter your login details
  • Get updated with all the latest gadget and car news

Leave a comment

Please note that we will not expose your email, but we might use it to email you back. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.
* mandatory field

  • Samsung Gear 2

    Samsung's back with its brand new Gear 2 smartwatch, the successor to the fatally flawed original…

  • LG 55EA980W

    Curved TVs are said to be the next big thing in television tech for your living room, but do they…

  • Bissell Vac & Steam 1132E

    Meet the Bissell Vac & Steam 1132E, the final contender in our steam mop showdown with an integrated…

  • Vax S86-SF-P

    The Vax S86-SF-P makes up the third choice in our steam mop showdown, but is it worthy of wearing…

  • Lakeland Steam Mop

    Which steam mop is the top choice for your spring cleaning? We put four to the test, including the…

  • Russell Hobbs Steam & Clean

    We’ve got a steam mop showdown on the show this week, and we headed to the SS Great Britain in…

  • Beats by Dre Studio Wireless

    When you think of headphones these days, you probably immediately think of the monster brand that is…

  • Samsung Galaxy S5

    The Samsung Galaxy S5, the latest and greatest flagship phone from the South Korean electronics…

  • NetGear VueZone VZSX2800

    The NetGear VueZone VZSX2800 could be the ideal home security system, with a couple of wireless…

  • PhoneJoy game controller

    Physical controllers on Android may not be a massive deal anymore, but there's always room for new…