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How Does the New Haitian Sûrtab Tablet Measure Up?

By Sam Perales on April 18, 2014

Since 2013, consumers have had their eye on a new Haitian-made tablet, known as the Sûrtab. It’s price and weight may seem ideal, but how does it measure up in terms of durability? With all of Inveneo’s work in Haiti, the team wanted to run the Sûrtab7 WIFI through the paces using Inveneo’s standard testing process to see how well the Sûrtab performs.

Product Description

Sûrtab tablet manufacture is producing lightweight and affordable tablets made in Port au Prince, Haiti. This is a new company, and availability is limited as they ramp up operations. They are currently offering three models: Sûrtab7 3GHD, Sûrtab7 3G, and Sûrtab7 WIFI.

Inveneo decided to review the lowest-cost touchscreen Sûrtab7 WIFI model.

Sûrtab7 WIFI comes at an affordable price of ($100 USD +/-) making it attractive for consumers (especially those in developing countries). The Sûrtab7 WIFI comes with Android 4.1 and access to the Google Play store which has over 600,000 apps and online casino games. The Sûrtab7 WIFI is a 7-inch device with a resolution of 1024 x 600 pixels.
In addition, the tablet:

  • Runs on a Dual Core Allwinner 1.2GHz processor.
  • Comes with 512MB of RAM.
  • Has 8GB of storage expandable to 32GB via the microSD card.
  • Features an HDMI port and two cameras (0.3MP in front and 2MP on the back).
  • Is very lightweight, weighing in at 287 g / 0.63 lbs which makes it easy for travel and transport.

A warranty is available, and in Haiti, tablets will be repaired at the factory. Inveno’s Sûrtab representative explains further. “The local support/warranty is huge when used in Haiti. The tablet can just be dropped off at the Sûrtab production facilities and will get repaired.”

Inveneo’s Quick Thoughts

Pros:

  • Budget friendly
  • A protective rubber case for harsh environments is included with tablet
  • Lightweight
  • Front and back camera
  • SD card expansion and HDMI port

Cons:

  • Screen can be hard to see depending on angle of view and its display is not very bright making it hard to see at times.
  • Battery life is limited, 2-4 hours under stress conditions.
  • Has a special power port and adapter (not the common micro-USB) which may be difficult to replace if lost or stolen.
  • Limited availability for the time being although surtab will be launching an online sales platform making it easy for international customers to easily purchase tablets.

Since the Sûrtab7 WIFI Is Cheaper, Does That Mean Lower Quality?

Since the Sûrtab7 WIFI is nearly half the price of its competitors, it is natural that the overall performance and hardware specifications would be lower than those of its rivals, for example:

  • The battery life is poor, surviving only 2.5 hours under cpu stressed conditions.
  • The display is not as sharp nor bright as other tablets in its class, and depending on what angle you view the display, it could limit visibility.
  • The non-standard barrel connector power port makes it difficult to find a replacement, especially in developing countries. This means you’ll have more equipment to handle and maintain.
  • The micro-usb adapter is only used to connect it directly to a computer for data transfers. In tough environments it may be more vulnerable to the elements since there are more ports/openings than are found on other tablets.
  • Last but not least, the Sûrtab7 WIFI is currently under limited availability as operations and distribution channel ramp up.

Final Thoughts

Don’t get the wrong idea though, this Haitian-made tablet will give you a great overall tablet experience for a great value. It physically performs well with its lightweight design, a responsive touch screen and an included protective rubber sleeve.

The system does have a HDMI slot that can be used to expand your display to an external monitor or projector (which is great for educators). An SD Card expansion slot can be really useful to expand storage space on your tablet. This feature is rarely seen on competitor devices. The dual camera capability also makes it nice to capture forward facing pictures and videos while also conducting front facing video calls.

Overall the Sûrtab7 WIFI is worth its price. Since it runs the industry standard Android OS, you can have access to all the settings one is familiar with while enjoying good hardware features and expandability options. It may have some weak points in hardware, but it will more than get the job done for half the price.

Where Can You Get One?

Currently the Sûrtab is easily available in Haiti at all Digicel outlets. However, online sales are set to begin soon so international consumers can easily purchase the tablet. For more information please contact Sûrtab Representative Stephen Claxton by email or by phone at +509 3405-7360 (Haiti) or +509 4749-3460 (Haiti). You can also visit the Sûrtab website.

Filed Under: Business, Education, Hardware, Technology
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Written by
As Inveneo’s Senior Field Engineer, Samuel Perales implements technology solutions in diverse and challenging environments. This includes implementing long-range wireless Internet solutions and installing/sustaining solar-powered computer centers sites. Samuel co-founded Communication Integration, a non-profit organization dedicated to expanding global access to technology and education in order to encourage social progress, economic development, and quality of life.
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3 Comments to “How Does the New Haitian Sûrtab Tablet Measure Up?”

  1. Warren McGuffin says:

    Nice review Samual. I am not sure we have met but I have worked with Bruce and Sybille in Haiti and we are also reviewing this tablet. I actually also purchased the top of the line HD6g 3G unit.
    I just returned form Haiti and also field tested the unit with a kid. It got pretty scratched up byut worked good. The other one is really nice and seemed pretty fast over the 3G Digicell system.

    Did you get any data on the charging times?

    • Samuel Perales says:

      Hi Warren,
      Nice to hear from you and I am glad you liked the review.
      Regarding charging times, I can only speak about the surtab 7 WIFI model. One of out battery tests includes continuously playing a graphic intensive movie on a full battery and seeing how long it would take for the battery to drain. For the surtab 7 WIFI model the battery lasted about 3 hours while under the above mentioned stress load.

      Thanks,
      Sam

  2. This is a really nice review-really good features. I wish they had one of their stores in Kenya so that I get one, especially Surtab7 WIFI.