back to article Binatone HomeSurf 7 Android tablet

If 2010 was the year of the Apple iPad, this year will, if Motorola, HTC, HP and others have their way, be when everyone else gets in on the touchscreen computer act. Binatone has made an early strike with its super-low priced machine that’s powered by Google’s Android operating system. Binatone Homesurf 7 Donut anyone? …


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  3. Andrew Jones 2

    £100 for an always on web device.

    This sort of thing could be just what I need to display stills from my webcam and weather data from my station.

    Could definitely get in to Android programming at this price and it'll be faster than the emulator!

    1. Magnus_Pym


      It's cheap enough to use as a touch screen wifi control/interface to almost anything. I'm thinking about a home network monitor on my desk in the office disguised as a photoframe; no kids you can't turn the central heating up to full just because I'm at work.

  4. SteveK

    Shame about the name

    Probably just me, but every time I saw the name, I read it as HomeSmurf.. And now can't get that image out of my head.

    1. Steven Knox

      Name game

      similar here -- I initially read the company name as Bin at once -- not a promising first impression.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Bin At Once

        describes pretty much what happened to most Binatone products from the 70's & 80's

  5. Toastan Buttar

    Could be quite a useful little device

    Web-surfing, media playback, etc. But the big question is:

    "Does it play Angry Birds ?"

  6. Christian Berger


    Can you get root on it?

    1. Mark 65


      I seriously doubt you'd get a root owning one of these.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re-brand Binatone

    Looks very much like a re-branded epad/apad etc.etc.

  8. Geoff Thompson
    Thumb Down

    Not cheap

    I bought the same spec but with a camera for £85 inc VAT some time ago, and they have certainly not gone up in price since then.

  9. Syren Baran


    Half the price of an Archos 70.

    But doesnt really look like the better deal.

  10. Phil A.

    I remember when

    the Binatone name adorned cheap and nasty stereo systems. This looks to me like the 21st century equivalent: A cheap and nasty tablet

    1. DrXym Silver badge

      My first games console was a binatone

      10 games in one, most of which involved moving one white block to intercept / shoot another white block.

  11. NightFox


    Are they really still going? I remember having a second hand Binatone TV game console (think white blocks on a black screen rather than Xbox 360) back in the 80's.

    And yes, I also read this as HomeSmurf.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Happy memories...

      ...of Binatone, Bush, Crown, Saisho. Cheap and cheerful bits of consumer kit, like stereo tower systems that we so light that the whole unit moved when you pushed a button. Loudspeakers that weighed almost nothing and were probably about 1W each.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        You forgot

        Ronco. Another catalogue classic

        1. Andy ORourke

          What about.....


  12. Mark York 3 Silver badge

    Angry Birds?

    Deal breaker for my youngest son.

    Penguins the closest I could get.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    When will we have...

    A machine like this, maybe £200 that can do 90% of daily computing tasks, and has a good build quality.

    You know, like those things we had before, I think they were called netbooks?

  14. Stuart Halliday
    Thumb Down

    Resistive screen?

    Well in that case it's a no-brainer. I'll not be buying one.

    All these ultra-cheap tablets with no upgrade path to at least Android v2.2 are already dinosaurs.

    Sadly, it is these very cheap tablets which will seriously harm the Android market as Joe Blogs tries out their first tablet and end up hating it.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Binatone? I'm waiting for the Amstrad

    Assuming it's got a fan, obviously.

    1. stucs201

      now if it was Amstrad on a good day...

      ...then they might produce something worthwhile. Sure it'd be made out of cheap, creaky (but nearly unbreakable) plastic. It'd also be likely to some with extras that cost very little but added functionality, perhaps TV tuner (with telescopic aerial), HDMI *in*, fold out stand. Maybe even twin SD slots for card-to-card copies :)

      Amstrad on a bad day though - oh dear...

  16. BingBong

    They beat Amstrad to it.

    Yeah, the race to the bottom is on!

    £100 is a lot for so little ... I just thought WinCE netbook and did.

  17. Peter X

    Styling is a bit rubbish but...

    The styling looks kind of hideous, but the price isn't bad. Shame about it being such an old Android version though -- I wonder why they did that?

  18. Lloyd

    It's a Binatone

    366 days after purchase it'll stop working, the plastic will crack and it'll fall to pieces to be consigned to the dustbin, who buys this rubbish?

  19. Semaj
    Thumb Up

    Can it be upgraded?

    Looks like the kind of cheap and cheerful device Binatone seem to make for those who really don't care much about a product other than to get basic functionality (my only home phone is by them and still going strong after about 7 years).

    My only query is, is it possible to upgrade the OS to a later Android version or is it totally locked down?

  20. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Tarnishing the tablet market

    You can just see it now, someone buys one of these, hates it and then dismisses all tablet computers as rubbish.

    These cheapo tablets are just oversized PDAs since PDAs had resistive screens as well. Nobody wants to have to push down on a screen and then move their finger.

    A capacitive screen just requires you to touch the screen, not press it down as well.

    These are cheap not because the parts are cheap, not because they are a bargain.

  21. James Pickett


    “Amstrad on a good day...”

    They did have them. I’ve just acquired a client who was using a 1985 Amstrad PC with twin floppies until last year. She’s finding her new Win7 laptop hard going - and slower...

    WRT the tablet, I try to avoid anything with a brand name ending in ‘tone’. Couple that to ‘homesurf’ and it’s really worrying!

    1. spodula

      The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

      Last year, i gave my (Still working!) Amstrad 1640 to the RCM.

      Also, Amstrad CPC's were fantastic machines!. Also, i remember my Amstrad stereo system to be pretty reasonable as well (that died sometime in the 90')

      Of course. That stupid phone thing... try again.....

  22. Jacqui

    ! want one

    to rip apar and place in a tile in the bathroom as a radio/audiobook reader/video player.

    Which will only work if I can root the beatie and install a recent AD release.

    However, I think CPW are in trouble with thier description of this product.

    "internet browser, so whether you're a YouTube fan, a music buff or you want to get engrossed in the latest bestselling title from your favourite author, you can do it all with just one device."

    I wonder how many returns they will get because youtube "don't work".

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh dear

    Nice to see they've covered the style angle by having their crappy logos plastered all over the front of it. Lovely sticker on the back as well.

  24. A. T. du Toit

    A note on RegSpeak

    Please, please stop using the term "fondleslab".

  25. Marcus Fil

    All hail

    the Chavblet

  26. daiakuma


    We may mock, but the emergence of sub-£100 tablets like these represents the beginning of the end of the "digital divide". Commerce is achieving what Nicholas Negroponte talked about.

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