The Matrix One Android tablet either has the worst timing possible, or is just inexpensive enough to take a few impulse buyers from picking up the Nexus 7.
The Matrix One is a new 7-inch tablet with a big selling point of a low price point. There is a $99 version of the tablet, but the version we saw will retail for $149 when it comes to stores in late July. Either way, the Matrix One is one of the least expensive Android tablets on the market that actually looks somewhat interesting.
For the $149, users get a 800×480 7-inch display with a Cortex A8 1.5 GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a 2MP webcam. The device also has a number of ports including HDMI, a mini-USB port, and a full-sized USB 2.0 port, as well as a microSD card slot that can add up to 32GB of storage space. The tablet runs on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.
To put it simply, the device feels rather cheap, it has an all-plastic case that makes it feel like a tablet meant for kids. The screen also looks pretty bad compared to recent smartphones and tablets. Raymond Pelosi, Vice President of Matrix One, admitted the company chose the screen to help keep cost down, and it shows.
The bad screen doesn’t mean the Matrix One is worthless, however. The tablet seemed to run smoothly int he few minutes we had to spend with it. We tried a few levels of Angry Birds which was pre-installed, and it ran well with no slow-down.
We also saw the tablet running a 1080p video on an HDTV with no apparent slowdown, which was nice to see.
It’s hard to believe anybody will choose the Matrix One over the new Nexus 7 or a next-generation Kindle Fire. A few months ago the Matrix One would have sounded like a great idea, now it just looks like a tablet for users who don’t realize the Nexus 7 is out there, or just can’t wait to save the extra $50.