updated 05:55 pm EST, Mon February 27, 2012
Scaled down features from PF100
ZTE has added several models to its tablet lineup, including the seven-inch T98. The midsize tablet integrates the same basic hardware as the 10-inch PF100, including a quad-core Tegra 3 processor and Android 4.0, however the construction appears to be much different between both devices. Electronista had a chance to take an early look at both devices.
We were disappointed by the build quality of the PF100, which seemed to be glued together, though the floor model may have been a working prototype. The T98 appeared to be manufactured and designed to much higher standards, however, with a build quality comparable to Samsung's seven-inch Galaxy Tab.
The 1280x768 display on the PF100 also seemed to be average, considering that many tablet makers are moving toward 1920x1080 resolution for the 10-inch class. We were therefore impressed to see that the T98 maintains the same resolution as its larger brother, which seems to bring an appropriate pixel density when spread across a seven-inch LCD.
The T98's Tegra 3 chip runs slightly slower than it is capable of, shaving the clock speed down to 1.3GHz, but the performance difference was not noticeable to us.
After toying around with the PF100 and the T98, we feel that the latter model is much more likely to gain traction in the seven-inch tablet market. ZTE is currently trying to improve its brand identity, and the T98 might help that cause, but many customers are either unfamiliar with the brand or associate it with cheap devices, so a low price tag may be a necessity. The company has yet to disclose pricing information or a launch date, however.