Aldi Bauhn 8” Android Tablet – Issues and Review

So I wangled the Bauhn 8” Android tablet that Aldi had on sale on the 21st of August (2013) for $169 as an early Father’s Day present.

Full specs are here :

http://www.bauhn.com.au/Products/Micro-Audio-System-(3).aspx

but in short it’s an 8” WiFi and 3G Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) tablet that has pretty much everything you expect in a tablet these days including WiFi, Phone, GPS, Front and Rear Cameras, etc

Out of the box the tablet has issues and searching the web you will find people complaining about it and taking it back within Aldi’s 60 day refund period, but I’m basically quite happy with it. I love the size and I find the screen more than adequate for my needs.

My expectations and needs might not be as high as others, I basically wanted it for convenient web browsing for the news and other info and reading ebooks on a slightly bigger screen than my 4” Sansung phone.   Extensive YouTube watching and music/audiovisual activities are not my core requirements, I have other devices for that.

The 3G is a bonus that I don’t expect to have to use very often because I will normally tether to my phone’s WiFi hotspot when I need to because I have a better data plan on my phone, but at $169 this tablet is about 50% the price of other similar featured tablets with 3G.  There is a range of other Android tablets on the market in a similar price range but they all appear to be WiFi only.  Perhaps one downside of this tablet is that the 3G only supports the 850/2100 MHz ranges which are Telstra’s frequencies (and Aldi resell a Telstra-based pre-paid service).  Optus uses 900/2100MHz so this tablet will work fine on Optus at 2100MHz but this is mainly in metro areas.  If you go too far outside the metro areas and are using Optus (or Virgin, Amaysim, Dodo etc)  as a carrier then you might not get 3G reception using the inbuilt 3G capabilities, but if you are tethering to a phone that supports Optus’s 900Mhz then you should be good.

There is a growing discussion thread about this tablet up on Whirlpool at

http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/forum-replies.cfm?t=2142051&p=21

and it is well worth reading .

The major out of the box issue appears to be with a mis-functioning  version of Google Play Services on the tablet and this causes other Google applications that rely on Google Play Services e.g. Google Keep, YouTube Player etc to fail.  I will highlight the errors in a future blog post but the good news is that they are apparently fixed by a firmware update.

Tempo Australia (http://www.tempoaustralia.com.au/tempo/home) who are the importers/supporters of these Bauhn Tablets have released an updated firmware that appears to fix all these issues.  See here to find out about this update:

http://www.tempoaustralia.com/sw/hdc-08/update.htm

If you have kept your Aldi Tablet, enjoy.

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