The Yoga Tab 3 Pro has a built-in projector. Photo: Lenovo The Yoga Tab 3 Pro features a hinge to allow it to be propped up. Photo: Adam Turner
An idea of the Yoga Tab Pro 3’s picture quality over a short distance. Photo: Adam Turner
The Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro has the potential to be an excellent on-the-go hybrid device. Unfortunately the current state of the software was such that it delivered a buggy and frustrating experience, particularly when trying to use it as a filing device at the Consumer Electronic Show in Las Vegas after my laptop gave up the ghost.
First off the touch screen is not nearly responsive enough. I found myself continually mashing the screen with my fingers trying to get apps to open or words to type.
It suffers from fat finger syndrome, where — as I type this — I’m having to fend off unwanted commands like Google Voice, and other apps accidentally opening because apparently if your fingers are not precisely on the letter of choice, the Yoga will take you all of the places you didn’t want to go, like back to the homescreen or to review all of your open apps (both buttons are located directly under a rather skinny space bar). As a result, it takes three times as long to achieve the task at hand.
The volume keys don’t work properly
The volume keys only work to make the audio louder, even when trying to decrease the volume. I had to manually adjust the audio in settings which meant exiting Netflix / Amazon Video / Spotify to make this work.
The buttons are also located directly above the charging port. Even touching that side of the screen while plugged in caused havoc with the volume and charge settings.
Some apps wouldn’t download
This included Spotify and Amazon Video. Amazon Prime Video is not available to Australian customers. However a VPN and adjusting location settings will rectify this. It took me about an hour all up to fix.
I have no explanation for Spotify except to say nothing happened when I clicked the app to download in Google Play.
Multitasking? Forget it
I could only run one app at a time to achieve a fluid experience. This is particularly true for video function. Netflix would shudder and crash whenever I received another notification or message.
The page reloads automatically when navigating between apps which I found especially frustrating and I can’t imagine is particularly healthy on the data consumption front. Google docs takes you back to the beginning of the page, so I find myself continually scrolling down to find where I was up to.
It’s light as hell
At 1.6 kg it’s a perfect device to carry around a tech convention all day without it weighing down your backpack.
While Lenovo claims 18 hours of battery life, my device couldn’t push it that far. Nonetheless it lasted about 12 before I had to recharge. This was with heavy use. Recharging the device took longer than 24 hours however, keep in mind this was probably partially due to having to use an adapter for my Aussie plug and Vegas hotel rooms not having the best voltage in the world.
It has a projector which you can use to throw video against a wall or ceiling of choice, or continue playing with your tablet (though I can’t imagine why anyone would except maybe in a board room type scenario). It works fairly well, and makes for a pleasant in-bed viewing experience. Nothing worse than winding down with Netflix trying to make sure your partner can see the 10 inch screen as well as you can.
However, it only produces 50 lumens of brightness and the resolution of 854×480 has not been upgraded from previous models. The projected video experience pails in comparison to the screen’s 2650×1600 resolution.
Should you get one?
The Yoga Tab 3 Pro is primarily an entertainment device and will make for a nifty secondary device once the bugs are ironed out. Despite all the problems, I like the look and feel of the Yoga. It has potential. The tablet retains the bulged hinge from previous iterations containing a 10,200 Ah battery and a kickstand. Given the Yoga is designed as a hybrid device I would have thought a keyboard that doubles as a kickstand would have been the more logical option, but why make customers’ lives easier when you can make them purchase a keyboard adapter instead?
The settings button is also hidden away in the drop down menu and cannot be navigated to any other way. This isn’t immediately obvious and will be a giant pain in the arse for mum and dad type users.
Claire Connelly attended CES as a guest of Lenovo which also provided her with the Yoga to use during the trip. This review is the result of around 2-3 weeks of daily use.
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