HCL ME X1 Review of the Tablet and Rooting Guide. Hands on video and photographs.
Table of Contents
- What the HCL ME X1 Android Tablet has to offer
- What you can do with the HCL ME X1 Tablet.
- Booting sequence
- Apps, Firmware information, etc
- Video and Music , Facebook, Twitter
- Instant Messenger
- Office Work.
- Ebook Reader, News, PDF
- Buy this tablet if
- Tech Stuff
- The CPU that powers HCL ME X1 Tablet
- What the TCC8803 CPU packs
- Rooting the HCL ME X1 Tablet
- Customer Support.
- My Verdict
The tablet is priced at Rs. 10,490.00 and should be available at most HCL shops or electronic / mobile phone retailers. I got a review piece of the HCL ME X1 and I played with it for a day.
What the HCL ME X1 Android Tablet has to offer
|Processor||Telechip TCC 8803|
|Processor Speed||1 Ghz|
|Inbuilt Storage||4 GB|
|Display||7 inches, 800×480|
|Camera||2 MP (Front)|
|External Storage||Expandable up to 32 GB using microSD|
|Ports||Mini USB x 1
HDMI x 1
3.5 mm Audio x 1
|Flash Player||Adobe Flash Player 10.3|
|Games||3D games supported|
|OS||Android OS 2.3.3 Gingerbread|
|Video||HD Video at 1080i, MP4, H264, WMV, AVI etc|
|Audio||MP3, WAV, WMA, OGG|
|Video Recording||Standard resolution|
Most Glaring Omission : No Android Market
I can not believe, HCL took a decision not to put the official Android Market. Instead they went with the HCL ME App Store market on the HCL ME X1, this is a serious short coming.
The tablet is heavy but somewhat thin. The body is made of aluminum, but HCL could have done a better job by using brushed aluminum or even high grade plastic (to reduce cost) instead. The tablet does not look sleek.
What you can do with the HCL ME X1 Tablet.
Here are two videos, I shot of the HCL ME X1 tablet, I shot the video using a Samsung Galaxy Tab, there was not much ambient light, and I forgot to turn on the flash. The video is a little shaky.
Apps, Firmware information, etc
As you can see this is a lightly customized UI by HCL. The tablet is loaded with apps from various Indian companies such as Jeevansathi, Clear Trip, Hungama and few others.
As budget tablet goes the capabilities are in tune with what other tablets of this category can do
Video and Music , Facebook, Twitter
The HCL ME X1 can play full HD videos at 1080i resolution, but the 800×480 screen does not do the HD videos much justice. You can play streaming Flash videos from sites such as youtube, Megavideo, Dailymotion etc and they look good. There is a built in Twitter and Facebook app which you can use for social networking.
The HCL ME X1 comes pre loaded with the Fring IM. You can use Fring IM to chat with your friends on Yahoo, MSN, Google Talk, Skype etc. Alternatively, you can also download more IM apps such as Nimbuzz to do VOIP chat.
The HCL ME X1 bundles a side scrolling, 2d game called the Jumping Ninja, with the tablet. The graphics are nothing to write home about but can give you a fair idea about the touch responsiveness of the tablet. The tablet supports 3D games and you can download, NFS, Asphalt, Final Strike etc and play them. The visuals however are not crisp and looks somewhat washed out.
The X1 tablet comes bundled with the QuickOffice app. You have to connect the tablet to the Internet to activate the app. You can create, edit MS office documents with the this app.
Ebook Reader, News, PDF
The tablet is pre loaded with Aldiko ebook reader, You can read ebooks in .prc, .epub. This app can download thousands of free ebooks to your X1 Tablet. You can also import your existing ebooks in the ePub or PDF format. You can download the Acrobat PDF reader app for reading PDFâ€™s. The Kindle App is also supported, so you can buy or download books from Amazon Kindle store.
The stock browser is quite good and responsive and can play FlashÂ videos too. You can download more browsers from the app market.
Buy this tablet if
1. You do not want in built 3G support.
2. You are ok. with somewhat washed out videos.
3. You want to play 3d games
4. You like to watch streaming Flash based videos
5. You will use WiFi or USB 3G dongles to connect to the internet.
6. You are Ok with slower speed of data access from sd card or internal storage.
On the box it is mentioned that the tablets come from a plant in Puducherry (Pondicherry, India). I am not sure if they are just packed there or assembled there.
The CPU that powers HCL ME X1 Tablet
HCL have not released any details about the processor they are using, but thanks to a tip from @naju and work of @gautam we found out that the the HCL ME X1 is using a m801_88 PCBA and a Telechip TCC-88XX cpu for it. @gautam also took a copy of the build.prop from /system and we confirmed that it is indeed running on a Telechip CPU.
The TCC 8803 is a 32 bit RISC CPU, with ARM Cortex-A8. It supports the ARM V7 instruction set and is clocked at 1Ghz but can be overclocked to 1.2 Ghz. The TCC cpu is great at playing HD videos but has some overheating problems.
What the TCC8803 CPU packs
- ARM Mali – 200 2D/3D graphics accelerator,
- DDR / DDR2 / LP-DDR2 / LP-DDR2 memory interface,
- LVDS Transmitter,
- HDMI 1.4,
- Composite TV-Out (NTSC / PAL),
- USB 2.0 HS OTG,
- USB 2.0 host,
- USB 1.1 HOST,
- EHI (External Host Interface),
- NAND Flash Interface
Rooting the HCL ME X1 Tablet
The HCL ME X1 tablet runs Android 2.3.3 which can be easily rooted using Gingerbreak. You can visit http://jailbreakandroid.org/how-to-root-phones-or-tablets-running-android-2-3-gingerbread.htmlÂ to download Gingerbreak and see the steps to root the HCL ME X1 tablet. I did not root the sample review piece given to me or take a ROM backup since, that was a pre condition before they (HCL Distributor) gave me the tablet
Acoording to @naju, in the comments, he mentions that if Gingerbreak is not working, you can try SuperOneClick root app which uses the psneuter crack to gain access.
@naju also wrote the procedure to root the HCL ME X1 Tab using SuperOneClick if Gingerbreak is not working. I am pasting the procedure here for easy access. Credit goes to @naju.
You can ROOT the device using superoneclick.for that First of all setup ADB on your pc.Install android SDK,while installing it asks to choose packages to install there u select only Android ASK package-revision 1.go to this link it will show how to install sdk in ur pc.
Restart you Pc after setting up ADB and Android SDK installation
Download and install SuperOneClick tool
In adb run this
echo 1 > /data/local/lge_adb.conf
Then open â€œSuperOneClickâ€ and â€œautoâ€.
Reboot the device and update Superuser from Market.
superoneclick will take some time to root sometimes it shows not responding,dont terminate the program let the program run for 10 min.it happens for me while rooting.
Customer support will be provided by the HCL Shops. There is a customer support App too, which you can see in the video. If you are connected to the Internet, running that app will connect you to the HCL Support center. This is a quite novel idea.
The screen looks washed out to me, and I was not impressed with the overall look of the device. The absence of the Google App market is a glaring mistake. The accelerometer/gravity sensor was slow to respond and the touch became a tad unresponsive sometimes. This is coming from a guy who handles a lot of tablets. But for an average user, the device should be ok for casual use. The XTAB Tablet from NXG Electronics, seems a better buy, due to its CPU and more inbuilt storage (8 GB), custom ROMs , but costs around Rs. 1500.00 more than the HCL ME X1. (5248)
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