Gemini Joy Tab
The Gemini Joy Tab aims at being a solid, value for money tablet available at just over £100. Does it succeed? Well, yes and no, but we’ll find out why as the review progresses.
By Chris Messenger | Published 05/12/2012
Affordable and good value for money
Android 4.0 is fast and responsive
Fully compatible with Google Play store
Poor Battery Life
For £30 more you can get a Kindle Fire...
Only 8 GB initial storage. SD card needed!
Prone to the odd crash here and there
Although it sounds like some sort of illicit sex apparatus or ruthlessly addictive class A narcotic (not that I know much about such things – I’m just saying, if you were in the pub and a dodgy-looking bloke in a long coat offered you a ‘Gemini Joy Tab’ your first thought wouldn’t be anything even remotely computer-related), the Gemini Joy Tab aims at being a solid, value for money tablet available at just over £100.
Does it succeed? Well, yes and no, but we’ll find out why as the review progresses.
Sporting Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich version), the Gemini Joy Tab is bang up to date software wise. This, together with a reasonably good 1.2 GHz processor makes us sit up and take further notice. Although you only get 8GB of storage, you can of course buy an SD card (which can boost the Joy Tab’s capacity to a cool 32 GB). The RAM isn’t wonderful, however, with only 512 MB and the battery life is a fairly lacklustre six hours.
On the outside, the Joy Tab boasts a capacitive Multi Touch screen and a sturdy (if fairly pedestrian) metal design. The Joy Tab looks a bit clunky for an 8-inch tablet, but nobody who truly cares about such things is expecting a miracle for a hundred quid (and if you are, you should stop).
Basically, it all adds up to what would have been a mid-range tablet just a year or so ago.
But that’s OK; the Joy Tab ought to give those of you on a budget a decent stab at a decent tablet, without breaking the bank. With minimum memory, minimum RAM and a No Frills design job, the Joy Tab isn’t making it to any award ceremonies, but then again, that was never really the plan.
At just over £100, the Joy Tab is actually affordable and reasonably good value for money. However, along with any purchase, you must also factor in the cost of an SD card, made necessary by this tablet’s truly pathetic amount of storage space.
Overall, nobody is charging the Earth, and therefore we aren’t asking for it either.
The metal outer casing gives this tablet a solid and sturdy feel. This sets the Joy Tab apart from the vast majority of tablets in its price range, which tend to be overly ‘plastic-y’ and more than a little rough-hewn. By contrast, even though the design job feels a little bit clumsy, the device itself exudes a certain confidence. The problem, however, is that it feels really heavy. In fact, its almost iPad heavy, which is bad for a tablet of this size.
The performance itself is slow and ungainly and the system is prone to the odd crash. Which is very annoying. You expect it every now and again with a budget tablet, but the Joy Tab does tend to take the piss a little bit in this department.
In addition, most of the usual apps aren’t preloaded, so you actually get little more than a browser to start off with, which really doesn’t help matters much.
To be honest, the whole thing feels like a missed opportunity. Whilst the bodywork is nice and neat and the tablet generally feels unbreakable, the inner workings of this computer appear to be all-too fragile.
What Other Users Say
14 of the 22 Amazon user reviews rate this tablet at 4/5 or higher, but it’s the remaining 8 that I am worried about. Users in this group complained about the crashing, the sudden development of fatal flaws and, most annoying of all, the Joy Tab’s propensity for committing some sort of bizarre software hara-kiri immediately after its 1 month money-back period runs out.
Any tablet designed for this price range is a risk. There are more happy endings than angry rants here, but there are a worryingly large amount of angry rants...
It’s not actually a terrible tablet, but by the time you’ve spent £15 on a micro SD card and another couple of quid on a micro USB cable, you’re actually in the same basic price range as the far superior Kindle Fire (give or take a tenner). It doesn’t make any kind of sense to buy this clunker when you could have the world’s second highest selling tablet for an extra note, at least, not to my mind anyway.
The crashing and putting itself to sleep at random intervals is a pain and the lack of any setup support is fairly inexcusable really. Despite this, I am not going to totally slate it; the Joy Tab is fairly cheap and can be used adequately for simple functions although not much else.
Our Recommended Retailers
NB! Confirm the retailer's price and product information prior to making your purchase.
Please help other readers by writing a user review. Feel free to write in any style but try to make sure other people will understand it. No adverts, abusive or offensive language, insults or spam.