Xoom Unboxing

Last week I received my Motorola Xoom Tablet running Android Honeycomb for testing. The experience so far has been mixed. It takes some time to realize this is not an iPad and it does not work like an iPad – which in itself is not bad but as we are all creatures of habit it is just not a very easy transition.

For functionality – everything you could need is there, some features look better than on the iPad (I like the widgets which give me a better overview of what is going on) some things are worse (I still haven’t figured out how to really manage my media on this device). Some stuff just isn’t finished (email connection to Exchange needed two hard resets since I have the Xoom – I don’t think this ever happened on my iPad).

Enough of comparing – here is how it looks like:

First – the Box:

take that Apple:

Seems to be a really big deal to people – I have never once noticed missing Flash on my iPad (or maybe I don’t care enough about it) – so the Xoom has it build-in, even so much that it appears on the Box.

This is how it looks – front:

and back:

There is nothing inherent wrong with the design – however, just the little details…. So the On Switch is on the Back of the Device which basically makes it impossible to lay down the device and work on it as long as you have switched on to go into standby mode. As soon as this happens you have to pick it up and find the Button on the Back to get it back on – how in the world could this be overlooked when the Xoom was designed? It is the most annoying thing and actually the biggest issue I have with the Xoom as it really gets in your way so many times.

Besides that – it is a little thicker than the iPad1 and of course even more so the iPad2 and it just seems a little heavier too.

Switched on:

As I said before I do like the Widgets – gives me a good overview of my calendar and several email Accounts at once. I also like Voice activated Search – it works well for me. As you might be able to see the important Apps for Business use are available – I have installed iTap (same as on the iPad) to access my virtual Global Client and I have installed Office Talk as a generic Lync/OCS client.

So for business use the Xoom offers almost everything you can get with your iPad today, it lacks in design and stability – I assume both will be addressed over time.

The pricing right now is curiously higher than for the iPad2 which makes me wonder why anyone would buy this over an iPad2 – but I guess that’s more a personal choice.