Fujitsu M532 Android tablet review

A quad-core Tegra 3 powered Ice Cream Sandwich tablet with 3G connectivity and virtualisation apps pre-loaded.

Battery

The device comes with a 3170 mAh battery pack. Fujitsu quotes a precise 8.4 hours of video playback. Our test consisted of playing a TV show on loop, with the tablet in Airplane mode and brightness set to full. The tablet lasted 5 hours and 15 minutes. This is short of the iPad 3, which clocked 6 hours 50 mins in the same test.

It is possible to get eight hours out of the M532 with moderate use and reduced brightness.

Overall

It's difficult to pick out an outstanding feature on the M532, which isn't a bad thing as Fujitsu has crafted a well-rounded device.

The Fujistu M532 will satisfy the needs of business users in terms of internet browsing, access to email and multimedia playback. The ability to run Windows on the device is a useful tool, but it doesn't replace a portable Windows 7 machine.

Fujitsu M532 Android tablet

Battery life is a touch disappointing, with the 3G and display chewing through the power pack. Unlike the Fujitsu Q550, the battery is not replaceable, which is surprising as this is usually the case for business devices.

Pricing is an area which could attract users. At 476, the M532 is over 100 cheaper than the equivalent 3G 32GB iPad 3 (579). However, the cost of deploying the M532 could equal the iPad if businesses choose to use Absolute Software, Fujitsu's Managed Mobile services. With Android devices being susceptible to malware, IT admins are also likely to keep the Norton Anti-Virus software running after the free trial, which is another expense.

Although the Fujitsu is one of the best Android tablets we've seen for business use, it's still not quite up there with the iPad in terms of battery life and performance. Users who are going to need daily access to Windows applications would be better off investing in a laptop, netbook or holding out for an ARM-based Windows 8 device.

Verdict

A jack-of-all-traits, the M532 is able to provide a solid tablet experience and also mimic basic functionality of a netbook. However, it comes at a time when the price of Android devices have been dramatically slashed. Unless 3G is an absolute requirement, we would suggest looking at the Nexus 7 tablet, which may be three inches smaller but is able to perform all the same tasks and starts at £159.

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