The focus of a tablet is generally the hardware, due to its size and nature. That, however, is no excuse for overlooking the software on a tablet, which makes or breaks the experience. As we’ve reviewed the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10 HD+, we’ve tested out the software and seen how it performed. So sit back, relax and hear all about our opinions on it. Because before you buy it, you should really hear about the software.
The Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ runs on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, a seemingly odd decision for a new tablet. Lenovo has said that the KitKat update is rolling out, but our review unit was still on Android 4.3. Not only were we stuck on an older version of Android, but we also had to deal with Lenovo’s software overlay which was, in a word, terrible.
Lenovo’s skin isn’t quite as pervasive as some, which was probably the only reason that I tolerated it without pulling my hair out. The Lenovo launcher experience is slow and clunky, with a move away from the traditional app drawer. Rather, you have multiple homescreens where all your installed apps are, like iOS, only uglier and clumsier. A heads-up to Lenovo, the app drawer is there for a reason and it’s because Android users like it.
Going into quick settings and settings is like a blast from the past. The UI looks about three years old with goofy icons and rounded corners pervading the settings. The accent color is a bright green, not dissimilar to the green in Android 2.3 Gingerbread. Added on top of that, Lenovo included several of its _______it apps on the device. None of these are particularly useful and the SECUREit app in particular keeps a constant notification in the notification bar, with no discernible way to disable the feature.
The Yoga 10 HD+ also has multiple sound and visual profiles that it uses. While not a bad idea, they require you to manually change them, and like SECUREit, keep a constant notification informing you of the profile you’re using. Not exactly pleasing. A multi-window feature is built into the Yoga Tablet 10 HD+. Unfortunately, few apps are compatible with it and it feels slower than most other multi-window implementations.
While the hardware of the Yoga Tablet 10 HD+ held great potential, it’s crippled by a poor software experience. The software is outdated and the UI only serves to enhance that, with a slow and clunky feel throughout. It pains us to say that the software deserves a solid thumbs down, but there’s really nothing better to say about it. Next time around, Lenovo should stick with stock Android and just work to keep the device up to date.
Check out the gallery below for a few screenshots.