Are you ready for the tablet revolution?

2015-02-22 13:53

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The introduction of fully connected tablets for under R1?000 by MTN and Vodacom has created a window to technology unprecedented in the disconnected South Africa of the past.

The MTN Steppa and Vodacom Smart Tab, released towards the end of last year for the same price, resulted in enormous hype over the “digital penetration” of such devices.

MTN Steppa


The very competitive data packages offered by these networks make it difficult to see beyond the package and investigate the longevity of the device users get “for free” every month, paid off over 24 months. MTN offers the Steppa for R129 a month, while Vodacom charges R79 a month. These offers include 500MB of data.

So what should you get, the Steppa or the Smart Tab?

Arthur Goldstuck, regarded as South Africa’s leading expert on internet and mobile technology trends, reckons it’s hard to spot the difference between the two.

“The Vodacom Smart Tab 3G and MTN Steppa Tablet are 7-inch devices and sell for R999. They have 2-megapixel rear cameras and 0.3MP front cameras. The Vodacom tablet has a 1.3GHz processor, while the MTN option runs on 1.2GHz.

“Given the main specifications and prices, you could be forgiven for thinking they’re the same device, just rebranded. However, the similarities are confined almost entirely to those numbers.”

According to the research #Trending has compiled over the past month, his opinions seem to be in line with many others we have read.

He says: “The Vodafone Smart Tab is almost on par with equivalent devices that cost twice as much from brands such as Lenovo, Acer and Asus.

“The MTN Steppa Tablet feels like a single cent paid over R999 would have been money ill-spent.

“Despite the same screen size, the Smart Tab is more compact, and its display has a better look and feel. The Steppa Tablet has a marginally higher screen resolution (1?024x600 pixels versus the Smart Tab’s 960x540), but one wouldn’t think it from the display quality and rough customisation of the user interface.”

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