Review of Augen GENTOUCH78 7" Android Tablet


TestFreaks Data











Today for review I’ve got a product that has gotten a bad rap in the early reviews for it. I like getting products like these for review because I want to see for myself. The product I have is the Augen Gentouch78 7” Android Tablet and it was provided by Geeks.com for my review. I did some research and found that the early reviews were slightly flawed, they reviewed a tablet that was different than the one I got and one that didn’t have everything working correctly on it. The Gentouch78 is what one would certainly call a budget tablet, coming in at under $200 so right from the start we’re not expecting much from it. Honestly I’ve enjoyed my time with the tablet, sure it’s not some blazingly fast amazing workhorse tablet but it works and it’s fun to use. It’s a product for those that enjoy tinkering surely, if you’re the type of person that likes to explore and get the most out of your Android based products then this is certainly one for you.


Let’s start with the video unboxing:

The Gentouch78 comes packaged in a nice looking box.

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Inside you’ll find the tablet in the case, user manual, power adapter and two USB cables. One USB cable is male while the other is female.

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The lather carrying case is nice and it’s padded to help protect the tablet., it’s held closed by two small magnets.

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The side is open to allow access to the ports so you can charge or use the USB connection while in the case.

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The tablet is 7” in size, it’s primarily black with just the Augen and Gentouch78 names in silver.

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The tablet is fairly lightweight, but it feels solid. The screen is resistive sadly. Yes it’s all plastic so it does have a rather cheap feel to it, but isn’t everything made of plastic these days?

The back looks like brushed metal but it’s just plastic, still it looks good.

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On the back you’ll find the speaker, four buttons for home, back, menu and search and there’s a stylus tucked in there as well. The stylus isn’t the best quality, it’s just a plastic stick that can flex quite a bit.

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On the bottom are also the labels for the side ports, HDMI is labeled but there is not port for it actually. On the side you’ll find a power button, microSD card slot, USB port, audio and power connections. The audio jack is a 3.5mm size for standard headphones unlike earlier Gentouch78 units that came with a 2.5mm jack.

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The microSD port is recessed into the tablet actually, it took me several tries to figure it out. When it’s in the card is flush with the side, and it’s rather difficult to get out. This is a good thing and a bad thing as it won’t come out accidentally, but you’ll need to stick something in there to push on the card. The slot is spring loaded and I also learned that the spring is strong, I’ve shot the card across the room a few times already. MicroSD cards are rather hard to find when they go flying across the room or even just under your desk…

Specifications:

Augen GENTOUCH78 800MHz 256MB 2GB 7″ Touchscreen Tablet Android 2.1 w/Leather Carrying Case

The GENTOUCH78 (NBA7800ATP) is a touchscreen tablet with vivid 7-inch TFT display and Google Android OS 2.1 pre-loaded, giving you a highly interactive and customizable couch companion that is also cost-effective. Breeze through emails and browse the web with the integrated IEEE 802.11 b/g wireless LAN connectivity.

The NBA7800ATP features a custom 800 MHz RISC CPU and 256 MB of DDR2 RAM along with 2GB of built-in storage, but you’re free to expand that storage capability with the built-in microSD/SDHC card slot. Slide a card in and enjoy photo slideshows, music playback, and even video playback! Browse the Android Apps Store and find thousands of apps that add additional functionality to this tablet!

This GENTOUCH78 includes an AC power adapter but charges over USB as well. The built-in lithium battery gives you hours of entertainment. Augen GENTOUCH78 7-inch Touchscreen Tablet provides a cost-effective portable multimedia companion that’s ready to advance your digital life! Get yours today!

General Features:
– Black color
– 7-inch TFT touch panel
– 800 x 480 max. resoution
– Google Android OS 2.1 pre-installed
– Telechips TCC8900 800 MHz ARM proprietary RISC CPU
– 256 MB DDR2 memory
– 2 GB internal memory
– microSD/SDHC card slot supports up to 16 GB capacity
– USB 2.0 interface
– Integrated IEEE 802.11b/g wireless LAN
– Built-in speaker and microphone
– G-sensor function provides orientation sensing
– Supports txt and pdf eBooks
– Supports various audio/video formats
– Supports various photo formats
– Built-in rechargeable lithium battery
– Supports add-ons from Android Apps Store
– Leather carrying case included

Physical Features:
– Rear buttons: Back, Home, Quick Search, Menu
– Power button
– DC In
– USB mini B
– 3.5 mm audio

Installed Apps:
– Browser
– Calculator
– Clock
– Documents To Go
– Android PDF Viewer
– iReader
– Music
– Stream Media Player
– Sound Recorder
– Email
– Gallery
– Skype

Supported Formats:
– eBook: TXT, PDF
– Audio/Video: MP3, MP4, MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG4-SP, RMVB, DIVX, WMV9
– Photo: JPG, GIF, BMP, PNG

Unit Dimensions:
– 4.6 x 7.4 x 0.6-inches (H x W x D)
– Weight: 1.8 lbs.

Price: $159.99


Boot time takes about a minute, but it is just an 800MHZ CPU. The Gentouch78 is running Android 2.1 operating system. During the boot process you’ll see three screens.

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If you’ve used an Android phone then you’ll be very familiar with the interface. The home screens can use regular wallpapers or live ones.  The tablet changes automatically from portrait to landscape and it’s quick to do so.  In the following screen shots I’ve blacked out the things I added to the tablet to test it with, what’s left is what came stock. On a side note I did pop it apart and there is a 2100Mah battery in it. The home screen is odd, the spacing seems too far, looking at it, it looks like you could add more things to it but it won’t let you. You can only fit 16, four down and four across.

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One complaint I’ve got about this tablet is the lack of hardware volume buttons, you’ll have to use the touch button on the top of the screen in the task bar.  Also there is the time, battery indicator, home, and back buttons.

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Here’s the programs page. You’ll find a few things pre-installed for you, but nothing really that exciting overall.

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The settings are just like you’d find on an Android phone:

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Here’s the About part if you’re curious:

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That was the Settings, but there is another section called Spare Parts that is similar to Settings:

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One of the programs installed is called Droid Live which is an internet music player, it works well.

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There are no Google apps on the Gentouch78, which means no Marketplace access but they do provide you with what they called the App Store. It’s not as good looking as the Marketplace and there’s only a fraction of the apps there. I did find though that some of the stuff can be found here that is on the Marketplace. You can though install unsigned apps which means if you can find the APK you can install it on the Gentouch78 with no problems.

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There’s also a streaming media player which allows you to hook up a webcam, or stream from the internet.

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There’s a fairly basic music player included too, it’s not pretty but it gets the job done. Sound isn’t the greatest but it’s not bad, it’s only a single speaker after all. Using a pair of headphones though will give you stereo sound.

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The Gentouch78 only has 802.11b/g so you’re limited to those speeds, but browsing seems fast. The browser included is just like the one that comes default on most Android phones.

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It’s a resistive touchscreen so you’re not going to have pinch-to-zoom etc, you can move the screen around like normal and tapping the screen zooms in and out. It takes quite a bit to get accustomed to using the resistive screen, especially if you’ve got a phone equipped with a capacitive one.

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The keyboard is your standard Android stuff and the resistive screen takes some getting accustomed to if you’re using your fingers. There is a stylus you can use that I showed you earlier. I found that I could type fine without the stylus, I just had to tap the screen a bit harder.

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There’s a picture browser built-in along with an e-book reader, I don’t have any e-books, I’m not into them sorry. The resolution is only 800×480 but pictures look surprisingly good, as does video.

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The 800mhz CPU can’t really handle complicated games like racing ones, you can play them but there’s a lot of lag, but my favorite, Angry Birds, worked perfectly fine. I played some other basic games as well and they worked too.

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One of the games I played was this Hungry Shark. In the game you’re a shark searching for food and you tilt the tablet left and right and forward and back to move the shark around. The game can be had for free, and there is a paid version as well but it’s a great test for the sensors which worked great on this tablet. This would be an accelerometer last I checked.

One of the things I like to do when I know I’m getting something for review is look around and see if there are any reviews yet and there were. Two of the biggest complaints I saw in the early reviews were a 2.5mm audio jack and no accelerometer, the one I received for review obviously has both of these. So if you read the early reviews and saw they were bad, well something was missing from them of course, not sure how I ended up with a better version than others.

Another complaint I read is the buttons being on the back instead of on the front like a phone has. It took some getting accustomed to but I’ve learned to like them there. When I’m playing a game on my Galaxy S Captivate I can’t tell you how many times I‘ve accidentally hit one of the buttons and exited the game, it can be annoying. The buttons being on the back has solved this problem, and after a couple hours of use I knew which button was which and I didn’t even have to look anymore.

The Gentouch78 is fairly responsive, yes there were times when it lagged, but even my Galaxy S Captivate does that from time to time. The lag I experienced wasn’t very awful most of the time, but a few times it did take several seconds for it to react to my command. Overall it works well really. For having an 800Mhz CPU in it I’m surprised at just how smooth it does run the operating system itself and things like movies, music and games, it does work well really for what it is. As far as multi-taking is concerned the tablet will slow down a bit, but toss a task manager on there and you’ll be set. Lower end Android phones will do the same thing so it’s not like it’s a surprise at all.

The screen isn’t bad, it’s rather low resolution but that’s to be expected for a low cost tablet like this. Movies and pictures look good though, but games and the interface oddly seemed to look a bit washed out.

Battery life isn’t the greatest especially if you’ve got wi-fi on, you might get over two hours out of the battery. With wi-fi turned off though I easily got a little over three hours run time.

The tablet does get a little warm but not overly so, I spent quite a bit of time with it and it wasn’t uncomfortable to use.

Sadly you won’t find the normal Google apps included with the Gentough78, and that’s one of the biggest drawbacks here. That means no Marketplace, Maps, or Gmail and Gtalk.


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Conclusion:

The Augen Gentouch78 is by no stretch of the imagination a powerful device but it is what it is. It’s an inexpensive Android based tablet that’s fun to use and enjoy, it won’t replace an iPad or something like the Galaxy Tab, but it only costs a fraction of either one. Taking into account the price and overall performance I’d say it’s not a bad little tablet really.

The Gentouch78, as is, would make a great portable media player, comic book reader or e-book reader, just don’t expect to do any major computing on it and you won’t be disappointed.

Yes it does have a resistive touchscreen and there’s a lack of Google apps, but I quickly became accustomed to the screen with no issues and it worked fine for me. Google apps, well I do miss those, they need to come back and I’m sure there’s a way to do it from what I’ve been reading.

Early reviews of this tablet seemed to be ones that had features missing, the one I got seems to be improved which is a good thing of course.

The Gentouch78 though does seem to have quite a few people interested in it over at XDA and there’s even a site dedicated to it. You can root it, flash other roms and do many other things just like you can with your Android phone.  I found that it works fine with the Droid Explorer program and with Google SDK tools as well. This tablet might not be the flashiest or fastest out there but it has potential to be a lot more than it is at stock with a few tweaks or hacks done to it. I fully plan to explore all of my options for those things now that I’ve completed the review, and maybe I’ll do a follow up to this.

Don’t get me wrong here, there’s plenty wrong with this tablet, it’s not something for someone who wants to jump right in and expect it to work perfectly. I like to play with my gadgets, I’ve frequented XDA for many years, unlocking, rooting, flashing roms and most everything else that can be done with a phone. The average consumer though isn’t going to want to do things like this, let alone even have a clue how to do them. If you’re into Android and like tinkering with things then yes get this tablet, it has a lot of untapped potential.

Taking everything into account I’ve given the Gentouch78 a 7 out of 10, but it should be more of a 7.5 really I think. Honestly I like this little tablet, with a little bit of work it could be a lot more than it is.

7

Pros:
+Small and portable
+Easy to use
+Comes with nice carrying case
+Seems well made
+Familiar Android OS
+’Hacker’ friendly

Cons:
-Low resolutions screen
-No volume buttons
-None of the normal ‘Google’ stuff included
-Resistive screen

Grades:
Overall score-7-10
Design score-7-10
Performance score-8-10

To learn more about our review policy please visit this page HERE.

  • DJay(needs-help)

    I have been told that there is someone i can email to get an additional jack for my tablet, since it is such a struggle finding some relieable head-phones for a 2.5 headphone jack………Please someone answer this question because it will be a major relief on my end. (=D)

    Thanx abunch DJay

    • tim

      Radio shack adapter is about 3 bucks

  • Drnvs

    I am a novice at android devices. My augen gentouch 78 has a micro SD slot that is difficult to handle. It has already gobbled up one microSD card. How do I handle this problem? Any advice would be appreciated. Is there a support link anywhere?Thanks in advance
    NVS

  • http://twitter.com/hotcandy201314 Hot Candy

    Gentouch is call a budget tablet, under $200. Maybe not have same as apple’s powerful device, but at this price is valued.

  • tony

    oh my augen gentouch it restar it self

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