There’s been a lot of talk lately about how tablets are replacing PCs. What’s not been included in the conversation is how the tablet’s operating system (OS) is designed as a follow-up to that of smartphones; meaning that the programs (apps) are designed from a mobile and more casual point of view as regards business and utilitarian needs (i.e., pretty much everything other than gaming, social networking and online connectivity).
So where does RCA’s Cambio 10.1″ 2-in-1 Tablet fit in? By possessing a real keyboard (not software oriented) and a real OS, it bridges the gap between tablet and PC effectively and efficiently as a hybrid that provides the best of both technologies.
Physically, the 2 lb. Cambio has a display that’s about 10 inches (diagonal) in reality and so provides a bit more space than the more conventionally found 10 inch tablet. The resolution is high enough (1280 X 800) for fine detail to be seen — be that text or otherwise. There’s a microSD card slot for increasing the storage capacity (32GB comes built-in, as does 2GB for memory) and there’s also the following outputs which make it suitable for use with accessories that plug in (as there’s also Bluetooth, such things as auxiliary keyboards, mice and even speakers can be used): there’s a standard USB port (for use with external devices like a hard drive, etc.) and a micro-USB port (for charging) and an HDMI out so you can send the video to an external display or a TV. Sound is conveyed through a built in speaker that provides decent results, in fact the sound is a bit louder than most tablets of this size. Think of the speaker as a casual use, a convenience and just plug in headphones when more quality listening (stereo or otherwise) is desired.
There’s also a connection for use with the included keyboard: as noted above, this keyboard has a full set of keys, including those usable with Windows, and there is also a small integral trackpad. The Keyboard doesn’t require being charged by itself and makes a hard connection for a firm fit using magnets as part of the means and then swings over to cover the tablet when not in use or traveling. The keyboard also functions as a kickstand; there’s a display mode for viewing the tablet horizontally and a presentation mode for using it to be viewed by a group. And just in case anyone is wondering, the touch-screen capabilities of the tablet can be used simultaneously with that of the keyboard. And just as an FYI, the WiFi capabilities are that of 802.11N and backwards, which means that streaming speeds are consistent with that of high-resolution video files. Plus it duplicates the “tablet” mentality by having both front (a.k.a., webcam) and rear facing cameras with enough resolution to be usable for conference calls and casual snapshots. Of course there’s also a built-in microphone.
The tablet employs Windows Home as the operating system and so is a full fledged user of the PC world. The availability of the Windows OS means the Cambio can perform those talks asked of it from whatever Windows compatible program is available on it. Through the use of the Windows OS and the keyboard, the Cambio moves far out of the realm of “apps” and becomes akin to the of a Windows-based laptop in deeds and not just in words or in a press release affirmation. The tablet can perform both text and well s graphic-oriented tasks with enough speed to avoid causing frustration. And yes you can play games on it, just not the super-intensive ones that PC gamers have souped up their computers for. The Cambio can handle the casual gaming as it has enough graphic “oomph,” thanks to a quad core processor.
Battery life is better than average for a tablet and a bit less than that of a laptop — expect the “up to 6 hours” to be more like around 4, especially if graphic-intensive uses are evident. But that’s really nothing to complain about.
The Cambio 10.1″ 2-in-1 Tablet retails for $199.99 (less on the “street”) and comes in a flat black or blue color scheme. This tablet’s a bargain on a number of levels — primarily the included keyboard and its integration of true PC functionality through the Windows 10 Home OS.