File transfer is handled solely through the MTP protocol so anyone with a Mac or Linux box is up a gumtree. To snag the relevant Windows drivers, you have to install the MotoCast file manager and media streaming suite but once you’ve done that you can at least transfer content over a Wi-Fi network and sync your iTunes playlists.
On the subject of music, the Xoom 2 has a very fine pair of speakers built into the upper rear of the device where they are safe from being covered by your hands while holding it in landscape orientation.
MotoCast can stream PC-stored content over Wi-Fi and the Net
MotoCast aside, the only other piece of built-in software is something called Floating Notes which let’s you call up a notepad by touching an icon locked into the system bar. It’s a nice idea but without a stylus writing a note is far very from easy and you can’t use the keyboard.
I’m guessing that the 5Mp main cameras has been yanked from the old Xoom parts bin because it’s equally mediocre. Like most Android tablets, the Xoom 2 isn’t certified to make Skype video calls but I was still rather surprised to find that the 1.3Mp webcam couldn’t manage them anyway.
Under Windows, MotoCast will sync with iTunes libraries
Technical details of the Xoom 2’s battery are a bit thin on the ground, but whatever the capacity it’s at least as good a performer as the first-generation machine, which it one of the top Honeycomb tablets when it comes to battery life.
During my test I found myself re-charging every other day but then I leave the Wi-Fi on continually and like a bright screen. A full charge didn’t quite get me through all three Extended Edition Lord of the Rings films but at just past the eight-hour mark I was well on the road to Mordor before the lights went out.
At the time of writing, there’s still no official word on the price of the Xoom 2 but I’m betting it will be close to the £400 mark or, to put it another way, £70 more than you can now get the 32GB Xoom Mk.1 for. That is a lot extra for a machine that albeit lighter and slimmer is only faster on paper and lacks storage expansion.
The Xoom 2 is a decent enough machine that looks great and feels good in the hand, but it’s no major leap forward from the original Xoom. The extra 200MHz of chip speed has little measurable impact on performance. And with Tegra 3-based offerings out early next year, Motorola is going to have to price the Xoom 2 very competitively. ®
More Tablet Reviews
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Motorola Xoom 2 10in Android tablet
Normally I can't be bothered quibbling with review ratings (they're subjective and as a reader I'll take what I need from the actual text of the review) but this one fairly leapt out.
For a suggested price of £399 (per the review):
"A feature of the design that really gets my goat is the positioning of the micro USB and mini HDMI ports"
"the extra speed has little if any discernible impact"
"the Xoom 2 doesn’t really feel any faster and still struggles to play 1080p video in any other format than MP4"
"the Xoom 2 doesn’t even have a slot so you are stuck with the built-in 16GB, or 12 and a bit after the system's taken its share"
"File transfer is handled solely through the MTP protocol so anyone with a Mac or Linux box is up a gumtree"
"without a stylus writing a note is far very from easy and you can’t use the keyboard"
"the 5Mp main cameras has been yanked from the old Xoom parts bin because it’s equally mediocre"
"the Xoom 2 isn’t certified to make Skype video calls but I was still rather surprised to find that the 1.3Mp webcam couldn’t manage them anyway"
"[the price] is a lot extra for a machine that albeit lighter and slimmer is only faster on paper and lacks storage expansion"
"it’s no major leap forward from the original Xoom"
"The extra 200KHz of chip speed has little measurable impact on performance"
So a device with little improvement in speed, a poor camera, no Skype, doesn't play nicely with Linux or Macs, and has no expandable or swappable storage...
And this gets 75%? I'd hate to see what a bad tablet gets...
Strike Vomit; 200% the functionality? What are you smoking these days? "Kool-aid gulping twat", and you have the nerve to express disappointment in me for calling you a fuckwit? I know it's difficult for a fandroid to do anything rationally when one of the devices running their holy OS is criticised, but when you look at things *rationally* you'd expect the Xoom 2 to be significantly better at the that price point than than the iPad given that you constantly criticise Apple for being overpriced style-over-substance 'toys' with allegedly 200% less functionality. As an aside, if the iPad is a style-over-substance, surely these 'me too!' devices are only ever going to be worse than that? In fact the only truly original competing product is the Asus Transformer. The irony of your post will be lost on you of course; the very fact that you bemoan critics of Android devices as kool-aid drinking humourless sheep that can't take criticism of the beloved fruit is laughable in the face of your typical fandroid response. You can claim that you like to wind up fanbois all you like, but we can all see the flecks of spittle on the side of mouth...
On Macs you can use the Android File Transfer utility.
But let's admit it, relying on plugins or apps or plugins for transfers is not as convenient, fast or stable as native USB mass storage, so the reviewer has a point.
At least you can copy files to the Xoom 2 on ANY PC or piece of shit Mac WITHOUT having to use the effing iCloud or that piece of shit bloatware SHiTunes!
or the glass half full
Better battery life
Easier to hold
Re-charge over USB
I'd say docking 10% points over the original for it not being as far reaching an upgrade as it could have been is far enough.
Hope we get a review of the 8.2in version, that sounds QI.