Microsoft has truly given lead to a new computing category with the Surface range- the 2-in-1 device. A device which acts as your personal entertainment hub in your free time, while being a powerful workhorse in your work time. Its success has compelled pretty much every PC hardware and software company to make their own “Surface” clones running either Microsoft’s own Windows 10 or Google’s Android.
But there is a very special company which realized the true potential of the 2-in-1 form factor long back, when others were calling it a “toaster fridge”<cough, cough, it was Apple>. That company is Chuwi, which has risen to be the most renowned China based maker of 2-in-1 devices. Unlike other OEM’s, Chuwi’s devices are special because they run both Windows and Android in a dual-boot fashion in the same device. So today, in this Chuwi Vi10 Plus review, running Jide’s Remix OS, the best ever desktop implementation of Android ever made.
Unboxing and First Look-
The Chuwi Vi10 Plus comes in the standard Chuwi brown cardboard box with the subtle Chuwi branding in the middle with the “intel inside” logo below it. The keyboard comes separately in the same kind of brown box with the Chuwi branding. I personally like these kind of boxes, they are understated and pleasing to the eye. Opening the main box we find the tablet up front, with the charger and the USB-C type cable below it. On opening the keyboard box we find the keyboard, which has magnetic pogo pins for connection with the tablet as well as a felt fabric hard foldable screen cover for the tablet. It doubles up as the tablet for the stand when folded.
The tablet feels very well built, although the glass up front feels a bit thinner than expected. But all is forgiven considering the overall quality of the device as well as the general good craftsmanship which can be felt on touching the device. On the left edge, we have the 3.5mm audio jack, followed by the micro USB port, the mic hole and the mini HDMI port. The surprising fact is the addition of the USB type C port, which makes the tablet future proof and ready for the next generation of USB cables. It is followed by SD card slot and the speaker vents. On the top we have the power and volume rockers, while on the right edge we have the speaker vents and nothing else. The bottom has the magnetic connectors for connecting the keyboard.
The detachable keyboard feels well built too. The keys wobble a bit, but nothing too bad. The fabric finish on the foldable cover feels good to the touch. Overall, the whole set feels very Chuwi and very quality, giving me no places to complain. If nitpicking, I would have probably wanted the plastic in the keyboard keys a bit softer and finger-friendly.
The Chuwi Vi10 Plus boots up with the Remix OS boot animation, which is pretty refreshing, and under 30 seconds we are taken to the setup screen to change the language and region according to our preferences. The tablet runs using Intel’s Cherry Trail chipset, with the Intel Z8300 Quad Core, 1.44GHz processor. It is backed with 2GB of RAM and 32GB storage, which can be bumped up to 128GB with the help of an SD card. I’m pleasantly surprised by its overall swiftness, as well as the smooth touch experience of the touchscreen.
The Remix OS, in my opinion, is what Android should be on large devices. The apps open like in an android device, but with the added advantage of multitasking. The Jide OS is pretty smooth and I did not experience any major lags. Apps ran in multiwindow mode like hot knife on butter and overall experience was very similar to a high end Android device. The only place where I experienced lags were while using the Chrome browser. But Chrome is known to hog RAM on any device it runs on, so I would not worry too much.
The Chuwi Vi10 Plus runs on a 8400 mAh battery, which is rated to run for 5 hours. In our testing, we found it ran well for 4 hours, after which the battery started going low, and finally it ran dead by the rated time, 5 hours. The display is a 10.1 inch 1080p panel, with great viewing angles to boot.
The tablet turns into a mobile workhorse when it is connected to the keyboard. They keys respond accurately to presses, and the tablet takes up the inputs from the keyboard effortlessly. It almost feels like using a notebook, but with Android instead of Windows. The touchpad is a bit of a spoilsport though, with it behaving erratically sometimes.
Overall, the Chuwi Vi10 Plus is an all rounder, with lags occurring on only heavy usage. The touchpad is the main problem is the device, before then we have to keep in mind the budget the device want to address. Good effort by Chuwi.