Smartron, a global technology Indian company that was launched in 2014 recently forayed into the electronics segment with a new convertible device. The Hyderabad-based company came into limelight when Sachin Tendulkar invested into it and became the brand ambassador. Popularity of 2-in-1 devices has increased as companies like Microsoft, Lenovo and HP are introducing new models in the market. One of the most important feature of 2-in-1 devices is that they offer better productivity as compared to tablets.
Smartron launched t.book, a 2-in-1 device in India in March this year which is priced at Rs. 39,999. Let us check in this review if the t.book justifies its price tag.
We unboxed the Smartron t.book recently, check out the video below.
- Smartron t.book in Grey with Orange color
- Keyboard with trackpad
- Charger attached with USB Type-C cable
- Quick start guide
Design, Hardware and Display
The Smartron t.book sports a 12.2 (2560×1600 pixels) WQXGA IPS 16:9 multi-touch display with fingerprint-resistant oleophobic coating. However, the screen is still reflective, glossy and prone to fingerprint smudges. It produces bright colors even when the brightness level is low, but the sunlight legibility is poor even when the brightness level is maximum. Viewing angles and color reproduction is good on the tablet.
The t.book scores when it comes to design and build quality. First up, the tablet has a magnesium-aluminium alloy design which gives it a premium look. Our review unit came in grey and orange color but there is also a full grey variant. The bright orange blends well with the grey and makes the tablet attractive. The top back half is in metallic orange while the lower part is in grey. The Smartron branding is present in the center while the t.book branding can be seen in the grey part of the tablet. Windows and Intel branding is also present on left and right corner respectively.
The device comes with a built-in kick stand that is sturdy and does a good job of holding the tablet in an angle suitable for you at the time of watching something as a tablet or while the tablet is docked into the keyboard at the time of working. However, it does not let you adjust the angles in many ways. The tablet measures 308.5 x 9.5 x 206.5mm (without the keyboard). However it is quite heavy and not easy to handle when you are using it is as a tablet. There is a 5MP rear camera at the top. As the tablet is heavy it is not convenient to take detailed photos but it is fine for simple quick snaps. Since the tablet is not light weight it is not easy to handle it for a long time and needs to be placed on a table or on your lap for additional support.
It has a 2MP front camera which is decent for video calling. There is a blue LED indicator next to the camera which turns on when either of the cameras are in action and goes off once the camera app is closed. Also present are dual microphones for noise cancellation.
There are two stereo speakers at the front, on either side of the camera. The audio output is loud and clear but the only when you are indoors and the output falls short when you are in a noisy or crowded place. The quality of the output could have been better. At the highest volume, the speaker produces scratchy sound output. It would be better if you could use a Bluetooth speaker for watching movies or listening to music.
There are 2 full-size USB 3.0 ports, micro HDMI port, micro SD card (support up to 128GB), USB Type C (for charging and transferring data) on the left.
There is a 3.5mm audio headphone jack on the right.
You have the power button and volume rockers at the top. The bottom of the tablet has a magnetic connector pins that lets you connect to a the keyboard. The 36W charger that comes with the t.book is bulky and has a cable which is short in length.
The t.book comes with a keyboard that transforms the tablet into a notebook. The keyboard is decent and docks easily into the tablet with the help of magnetic pogo-pin. It is lightweight and offers comfortable key spacing while typing. The keys offers good feedback and there is enough space for palm rest while typing. It is a bummer that the keyboard does not have volume keys and you have to use the volume rockers present on the t.book. However, the trackpad is a letdown as it is over sensitive and does not offer accurate responses. It has issues while registering touches. The right-click and left click buttons on the trackpad are a bit hard. Closing the tablet when it is docked into the keyboard will automatically put it to sleep and opening it will start.
The 5MP auto focus rear camera is just average. Daylight shots were grainy but macro shots were clear. Since it does not have a flash, low light images came out poor. As mentioned earlier, the 2MP front camera is decent for video calls.
Check out some camera samples here. (Click the image for the full resolution sample)
It can also record videos at 1080p full HD resolution, but the video doesn’t have much details since it is just a 5-megapixel camera.
The t.book runs on Windows 10 Home and comes bundled with a 30-day trial pack of Microsoft Office 2016. Out of 128GB of storage, you get about 97GB of free space to use, out of the box. The microSD card slot allows for up to additional 128GB of storage. Smartron offers cloud-based software suite called tronX but we could not set up the account even after over five attempts during out testing period. Hence, we could not check the tcloud store and other features of the Hubtron.
The t.book is powered by dual-core Intel Core M-5Y10c 14 nm Broadwell processor (Turbo boost up to 2 GHz) which is accompanied by 4GB LPDDR3 RAM. It performed smoothly and without any glitches during out testing period. It has Intel HD Graphics 5300.
The t.book can run day-to-day tasks like basic editing work, video streaming and games smoothly. However, the device heats up after multi tasking and even during video calls. Smartron t-book’s most notable feature is the use of USB Type-C port for charging.
The t.book support connectivity options like WiFi 802.11 ac dual-band MIMO, Bluetooth 4.0, two USB 3.0 slots, micro HDMI and USB Type-C (for charging).
The tbook has 37Wh battery which the company claims to last up to 10 hours. We got about about 6 hours of battery life with a combination of medium to heavy usage on full charge.
The Smartron t.book is a stylish device that offers premium look thanks to its sturdy build and design. Running Windows 10 with 4GB RAM, it offers pretty good over all performance. However, it would have been great if the tablet was lightweight as it is too heavy for single hand or long time use. Moving on, the trackpad issue on the keyboard that comes bundled with the t.book is a major concern and hope the company looks into fixing it. To sum up, at a price of Rs. 39,999, the Smartron t.book is a good option and does offer a decent 2-in-1 experience. With a high-end keyboard the t.book could be used as a daily driver. In comparison the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 starts at Rs. 89,990 for the base variant.
- Good design and build quality
- Battery life
- Decent performance
- Reflective display
- Over sensitive trackpad
- Heavy to handle as a tablet