Reviews are generally positive for the Motorola Xoom, though critics say it has been surpassed by newer, more powerful tablets -- including its successor, the Motorola Xyboard . Reviewers say they love the customizable widgets, tabbed web browsing and intuitive notification system found in the Android operating system, although it can be a bit more complicated than the one used in Apple's tablets. The Android 3.0 Honeycomb operating system that shipped on the Xoom originally has since been upgraded to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, which experts say is vastly improved. The 10.1-inch Motorola Xoom gets high marks for design, although it is slightly heavier than the Apple iPad 2 (*Est. $400) . Though it is no longer top-of-class, the 1,280-by-800-pixel display looks bright and crisp -- especially for watching videos -- and the cameras take better pictures than those on the iPad 2. Battery life is also very good, lasting roughly nine hours in most tests.
In addition to a 10.1-inch multitouch display, the Motorola Xoom comes with a 1 GHz dual-core processor, 1 GB of RAM, dual cameras and a micro USB port. Original models were available with 3G/4G capabilities, but the Xoom is Wi-Fi only. While most experts had liked the Motorola Xoom well enough, they are currently pointing to the Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime (Discontinued) as the best Android tablet.
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Most major technology reviewers evaluate the Motorola Xoom, including Laptop Magazine, PCMag.com, CNET, PC World and Engadget.com. These sources test and rate Motorola's tablet, which makes it easy to compare the Xoom to its competitors. ArsTechnica.com and AnandTech.com don't rate the tablet, but both sites have detailed reviews that are must-reads for potential buyers. We also found shorter reviews at TechRadar.com, SlashGear.com and IGN.com.
1. Laptop Magazine
Laptop Magazine gives the Motorola Xoom a 3-star rating out of 5. Mark Spoonauer appreciates the Xoom's design and praise the tabbed web browsing. The notification system also earns high marks. However, Spoonauer says the tablet "feels buggy" and is too expensive compared to Apple's original iPad.
Review: Motorola Xoom (Verizon Wireless) Review, Mark Spoonauer, Feb. 23, 2011
The Motorola Xoom earns a 3.5-star rating out of 5 from PCMag.com. While the editors say the Xoom is a top choice for Android fans, they think the original Apple iPad is the best tablet overall. The tablet is fast and has a gorgeous display, but it has some bugs and few apps that are tablet-specific.
Review: Motorola Xoom (Verizon Wireless), Tim Gideon and PJ Jacobowitz, June 2, 2011
Like many reviewers, Ryan Paul at ArsTechnica.com says the Motorola Xoom was put on the market before it was ready. "If you compare the Xoom against the iPad 2 today, there isn't much of a case to be made in favor of the Xoom," he says.
Review: Ars Reviews the Motorola Xoom, Ryan Paul, March 6, 2011
Anand Lal Shimpi is impressed with the Android 3.0 Honeycomb operating system that originally shipped with the Xoom, and he loves the robust multitasking abilities. However, even Google's apps crash quite often, Shimpi writes.
Review: Motorola Xoom Review: The First Honeycomb Tablet Arrives, Anand Lal Shimpi, Feb. 23, 2011
The Motorola Xoom earns 3.5 out of 5 stars from CNET. "The Xoom's spec sheet is enough to make any tablet tremble, but the price is high, and Google still has some work to do before its tablet software experience is as fleshed out and intuitive as Apple's," the review notes. However, an editors' note says that the body of the review has not been updated since first published and does not take into account changes and updates that have taken place since.
Review: Motorola Xoom, Donald Bell, April 20, 2011
6. PC World
PC World gives the Motorola Xoom tablet a 3.5-star rating out of 5. As is the case in most Xoom reviews, PC World's tablet runs the Android Honeycomb 3.0 operating system, which has been updated twice since. Melissa Perenson says she has some problems with her display, which is pixilated with poor contrast. She also reports several crashes. On a positive note, the tablet is fast and well designed.
Review: Motorola Xoom (Wi-Fi + 3G), Melissa J. Perenson, Feb. 23, 2011
Engadget.com reports that the Motorola Xoom's performance is fast overall and battery life is excellent. However, Joshua Topolsky says the tablet is pricey. "Is the Xoom a real competitor to the iPad? Absolutely. In fact, it outclasses the iPad in many ways. Still, the end user experience isn't nearly where it needs to be," he writes before the current iPad was released.
Review: Motorola Xoom Review, Joshua Topolsky, Feb. 23, 2011
TabletPCReview.com gives the Motorola Xoom a 4-star rating out of 5. While Jamison Cush thinks it is the best Android tablet available -- a title that has been usurped by newer Android slates -- he says "it's hard not to think the Xoom was released too soon."
Review: Motorola Xoom Review, Jamison Cush, March 13, 2011
The Motorola Xoom earns a 4-star rating out of 5 from TechRadar.com. John Brandon has plenty of good things to say about the Xoom tablet, especially the Android Honeycomb operating system and the zippy overall performance. However, he says the limited number of tablet-specific apps is a big downside.
Review: Motorola Xoom Review, John Brandon, March 3, 2011
Vincent Nguyen says the Motorola Xoom is a strong contender in the tablet wars. It is fast and well designed, and the Android Honeycomb OS is a "convincing and polished platform."
Review: Motorola Xoom Review, Vincent Nguyen, Feb. 23, 2011
Scott Lowe says the Android operating system is a great update from the smartphone-based OS used on previous Android tablets, and his review gives the speedy processor top marks. However, he thinks the tablet is too expensive to appeal to a wide range of consumers.
Review: Motorola Xoom Review, Scott Lowe, March 8, 2011
Wilson Rothman says the Motorola Xoom is a good alternative to the original Apple iPad. He has a few minor complaints, but overall he says the Xoom is a solid tablet.
Review: Motorola Xoom Review: iPad Finally Has Competition, Wilson Rothman, Feb. 23, 2011