Asus’ new Android tablet has a 7-inch screen similar to that of the Nexus 7, though it has a lower-resolution 1024×600 display. Because both the new MeMO Pad 7 and the Nexus 7 come from the same manufacturer they look almost exactly the same at first glance, at least when turned off.
The Asus MeMO Pad 7 runs Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with a custom skin laid over it. Like other Asus Android skins, it loo fairly similar to stock Android with a few added widgets and an extra virtual button for floating apps such as a calculator, stopwatch and small browser window.
Asus also loads a number of apps onto the MeMO Pad 7 including SuperNote Lite for taking handwritten notes, MyPainter for sketching and Asus Studio for photo editing.
The tablet can also access Asus WebStorage Space, Asus’ cloud storage option. The tablet comes with 5GB of free cloud storage for storing files as well as editing office documents. Asus WebStorage Online Office lets users view and edit Word, PowerPoint and Excel documents on the cloud service similar to Google Drive.
Inside the Asus MeMO Pad 7 is a 1GHz VIA processor and 1GB of RAM, which likely means the tablet is slower than the Nexus 7 that uses an NVIDIA Tegra 3, and is just $50 more. The MeMO Pad 7 has 16GB of internal storage, the same as the base Nexus 7. There’s also a 1MP front-facing camera that can shoot 720p video for video chats.
Unlike the Nexus 7, the MeMO Pad 7 comes in a variety of colors including grey, pink and white. Users who want colors on their Nexus 7 have to buy a cover for the tablet for an extra $20.
At $149 the Asus MeMO Pad ME172V is hard to recommend over the only slightly more expensive Nexus 7 (especially with a new Nexus 7 potentially coming soon), but it’s likely a decent option for those who can only afford a $150 tablet.
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