Lenovo has taken its already solid 10″ YOGA Tablet and improved upon it with the series’ second iteration. On top of the YOGA’s trademark stand gaining the ability to bend a full 180 degrees and allow the tablet to hang, the YOGA 2 also received a considerable boost in specs. It now sports an Intel Atom Quad Core processor, a Full HD 1920×1200 display, and two larger-chamber speakers with Wolfson Master Hi-Fi. All these specs are great on paper, but how does the device actually stack up? After a few weeks with the device, I can firmly say it does so pretty darn well. Read on for my full YOGA Tablet 2 review.
The design of the 10″ YOGA Tablet 2, like anything in the YOGA line of Lenovo products, is unique in that it has the ability to adjust to nearly any angle, for nearly any use. A small stand on the bottom of the tablet can be rolled out to let you stand the tablet up. Entirely new to the YOGA 2 is the ability for the stand to bend all the way back and allow the tablet to hang. I personally didn’t find a use for this bit of flexibility, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to have, and if you’re someone in a work environment or nowhere to put the laptop on a table, it would come incredibly handy.
When not in use, the stand sits perfectly flush against the back of the YOGA 2. I worried that I might feel the stand grooves or the space between the stand and the back of the tablet, but I never did once. You won’t even realize there is a stand until you want to use it. Getting the stand out is tricky the first couple times, as it almost feels like you’re twisting the device unnaturally, but after a few times it becomes second nature.
The only issue I had with the design of the YOGA 2 was the lack of resistance when the tablet was in stand mode. It really doesn’t take much force to push the tablet over. Even something as simple as tapping an option on screen would make the tablet wobble, and if pressed hard enough, being to collapse the stand. Its best use is to pick what you want to watch, put the YOGA Tablet 2 down, and let it play. If you need to change a video or otherwise interact with it, you’ll need to pick it up for sure.
The stand, along with the YOGA 2’s extended battery, are in a cylindrical base, that doubles as a way to hold the tablet. I personally have big meaty bear hands, so the extra grip was a welcome change from other tablets and my aching, overly-bent fingers. Using it as a book is the most obvious use, but it also works well when holding it horizontally to give yourself an added grip. The major downside to this, though, is that almost no cases will work with the tablet. If you’re someone who needs a case on their devices, you’re pretty much out of luck.
On the 10″ review model I was sent, the screen is big and bright. I wouldn’t exactly call it vibrant, despite its 1920×1200 resolution, as a lot of smaller details are pixelated and rather ugly. In particular, text looks very muddy, but still readable. The screen is perfect for games and watching videos though, which if you’re buying a 10″ tablet, is probably what you’ll be wanting it most for anyway.
It’s Android, so it is what you’d expect? Lenovo does add some nice flairs to it though, such as subtle design touches on the UI and a nice blur effect on everything in the background when something in the foreground is selected. A lot of the touches are very iPhone-esque which I am more than ok with.
It comes with Security HD pre-installed, which can easily be uninstalled when you realize it doesn’t actually do much for you. In general, the YOGA Tablet 2 is delightfully light on pre-installed software.
One thing I do miss that Lenovo changed, however, is the fact that the top right of the notification shade no longer is a handy little quick-access panel to options switches like Brightness, Wifi, etc. Instead, it’s just a button that takes you to a settings panel to customize your notifications. This seems like an un-needed change from standard Android that would have been better left undone.
Not the best quality at higher levels, but these are some of the loudest speakers I’ve heard in a tablet. I’m not that much of a stickler for audio quality, so it didn’t bother me, but if you’re any kind of an audiophile the quality likely will drive you insane. It gets very tinny at higher volumes.
But with that said, at even just 75% volume, I could hear anything playing throughout the whole house. Which is more than I can say for a lot of other tablets, or even laptops for that matter.
The Intel Atom Z3745 Processor more than does the job in this device. Fast-paced games never slowed down, I was able to have many Chrome tabs open, and there were never any prolonged bouts of sluggishness.
Occasionally, the sliding had issues with losing my place and it would require a double swipe, but it’s hard to tell if that was a result of some slowness, or just some issues with the capacitative touch.
I also had some major issues with Wifi connectivity in my time with the device. At around 25′ away from my router through a couple walls, I was unable to stream any kind of video. Spotify would work, but still pause frequently. Compare this to, say, my Nexus 7 or my laptop/phone which all work perfectly fine much further than 25′ away. I was pretty disappointed that I couldn’t watch video on the tablet in my kitchen because of this, missing out on that big screen and loud speakers when I wanted them most.
Lenovo advertises the battery life to be at about 12 hours of “Wifi browsing at 40% backlighting” and I got pretty darn close to that with my normal every day use. The tablet’s 9600mAh (or 6400mAh in the 8-inch variant) is smartly in the hinge of the base, meaning that it can be larger than a standard flat tablet. Battery life in general was just fabulous, and it rarely dropped at all while on standby overnight.
At $300, the YOGA Tablet 2 is on the higher end of the price point for Android 10″ tablets. Depending on what you want out of a tablet will ultimate decide whether or not the YOGA is worth it. Want the best battery and loudest speakers possible with the ability to stand or hang it wherever you need it to be? You’ll be hard-pressed to find a better value than the YOGA Tablet 2.
Want the sleekest body and most beautiful screen imaginable? It’s going to be a bit too pricey.
All things considered, the YOGA Tablet 2 is not a tablet that you will regret purchasing. It all boils down to its versatility and excellent battery life as the main positive points, with its sometimes muddy screen and iffy Wifi connectivity as the major downsides. I certainly didn’t hate my time with the device, and I could certainly see making this my next tablet purchase, even if the price point is a little high at $300.