28 September 2015

REVIEW: Bush MyTablet 8 Windows Tablet


We're no strangers to budget Android tablets here at The Test Pit, having reviewed a few cheap but very cheerful models in the past. A couple of months ago however, we reviewed a budget tablet running Windows 8.1, the Linx 7, which impressed us no end. Therefore we've decoded to see what else is out there for those of us big on Microsoft enthusiasm, but short on cash. We've found a corker in the Bush MyTablet 8.

Here are your headlines, folks: this is a sub (just) £100 eight inch tablet that runs Windows 8.1. At 9mm thick it won't stun you with it's slimness, nor will its mere 1GB of RAM, but after extensive use we really have fallen in love with this feisty little fellow. As we stated in our recent review of the Asus ZenPad 8.0, eight inch tablets are our favourite slate size, so the Bush MyTablet 8 is great on both the wallet and the hand.

Just like with the Linx 7, we found that operating Windows 8.1 on a smaller screen didn't really take all that much getting used to. With the addition of a Bluetooth keyboard, and with Desktop mode activated, the tablet acts just like your Windows laptop would, allowing you to use (should you purchase it – no freebies here) Microsoft Office in the familiar way.

But of course, this being Windows 8.1, the finger-pleasing tablet mode is just as easily used, with the nice chunky Start screen buttons that Windows 10 has largely done away with. Yes, there is only a single gig of RAM to play with, but with 32GB of storage as standard, and the addition of a Micro SD card slot to expand it further, this is an extremely attractive media tablet. Day to day tasks like running apps (the ones you can find anyway – we've said it before, but the Windows mobile app store pales in comparison to Apple's and Android's), creating documents, and browsing the web can be pulled off without making the Bush MyTablet 8 sweat too much. Crank up the usage and have multiple apps running simultaneously while downloading or streaming content, and that single gig really gets pushed to the limits. During heavy use we experienced several freezes and even a total crash.

But remember, this is a cheap eight inch tablet... what the hell are you doing pushing it to the extreme operating limits? For steady use it performs great, and although the 1280 x 800 display won't win any awards, it does okay with both media and games, appearing bright and clear for the most part. The Bush MyTablet 8's speakers were very 'meh' (a technical term), but via headphones, both connected through the audio jack or through Bluetooth 4, everything sounded fine.

There are two cameras on the Bush MyTablet 8, an atrocious 2MP on the back, and an even worse, God awful, vomit inducing 0.3MP on the front. Why they even bothered, we don't know. But at least they are there should you suddenly need to Skype with someone you don't care about. But again (and we've said this many, many times now) if you're buying a tablet for photography, you're an idiot.

Less than £100: that is the key thing to remember here. You're getting a well made gadget that performs very decently for less than most other decent tablets on the market. If you're looking to extend your office experience into the palm of your hand, you could do a lot worse than the Bush MyTablet 8. Sure, Windows apps are still lagging behind, and push it too hard and it will throw a wobbler, but for casual, familiar tablet use, this is great.

Around £99

Available from www.argos.co.uk

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