Dell Streak 7
Does the Dell Streak 7 hit the target, or does it reach for the sky? We take a look at the new sheriff in town...
By Chris Messenger | Published 16/08/2012
Small and light
Support for flash
Support for 3G
Proprietary USB connector
Usual lack of android optimised apps
Resolution is poor
Button placement is poor
Also, despite the naff screen, the cameras on the Streak are really excellent. Many Tablets trip themselves up when it comes to cameras, with designers seemingly tacking them on as an afterthought.
Dell, already very successful in the world of consumer technology, slap on their bullet belts, holster up that old six-shooter and head into Tablet town. Their opening shot? The Streak 7. But does the Streak hit the target, or does it reach for the sky? We take a look at the new sheriff in town...
Pretty much every Tablet PC runs a 1GHz processor and the Streak is no exception. However, with just 512MB of RAM and only a 16GB hard drive, this Tablet consistently underperforms in every other area. Its almost as if Dell haven’t taken the emerging Tablet market seriously and instead just churned out a basic, perfunctory model just to stay amongst the ‘in’ crowd.
What’s more, only running Android 2.2 (when 3.0 and higher is available) seriously hurts the Streak’s chances of being anything other than an also-ran. There really is nothing at all special about this Tablet.
Amazingly, since this review was first written (in February of this year) the price of the Streak has actually gone up. A Dell Streak 7 will now set you back about £274, but a used model can be obtained for £140.
At a small, yet comfortable, 7-inches, the Streak fits the profile of most other Tablets. However, the very low screen resolution (400 x 800 pixels) is a bit of a let down. It isn’t so bad when it comes to the day-to-day activities, but when watching videos or viewing photos, the screen’s deficiencies really start to show through.
The Streak can, at least, access the 4G Network, which is a serious plus point. 4G is a major selling point at the moment and even now only a handful of Tablets are capable of running it. We would have bet dollars to donuts that the Streak wouldn’t have been one of them, but, as it turns out, we’d have been wrong.
Also, despite the naff screen, the cameras on the Streak are really excellent. Many Tablets trip themselves up when it comes to cameras, with designers seemingly tacking them on as an afterthought. Not so the Streak, with 5 whole Megapixels at the rear and 1.3 at the front, the Streak will take nice photos and hold brilliantly detailed video chats (though you may not see them very well on the screen).
The Streak weighs 453.6g, which is on the heavy side of light for a Tablet PC. It isn’t the weightiest, but its hardly a slender little number and not nearly as portable as it could be. If the Streak were tiny and light, then even with mediocre stats, it could be marketed like the Tablet PC equivalent of an iPod Nano and escape criticism quite as harsh as the one it’s getting from us, but it isn’t, it wasn’t and therefore it hasn’t.
Only running Android 2.2 (when 3.0 and higher is available) seriously hurts the Streak’s chances of being anything other than an also-ran
The battery life is, like everything else on the Streak, painfully average. It won’t clap out on you right away, but no effort has been expended in making it last any longer than it absolutely has to.
Also, let’s face facts: In the fast-paced, innovative world of Tablet PCs, running Android 2.2 is just lazy.
What Other Users Say
Over at Amazon, the reviews are a mixed bag. 12 customers reviewed the Streak and, of the 12, only 6 of them gave reviews worth 4/5 or higher. The rest of them were unevenly smattered across the board. With 3/5 scores here and 1/5 there, it seems apparent that users were divided as to the Streak’s overall usefulness.
The cheapest that we’ve seen the Streak sold for is just under £200. The RRP is about £260, so, actually, it is a reasonable price. Nothing about the Streak is ever going to set the world alight and there are a billion Tablets we would recommend before this one, but if all you’re after is a decent, lower-range Tablet from a trusted brand and you don’t expect much more from it, the Dell Streak could actually make you very happy.
Avoid it if you can afford to, as there are infinitely better models for just £20-£50 more, but if this is your price range, if your expectations are fairly low and, if you can find it, maybe you could buy the Dell Streak 7 (insert the theme from ‘The A Team’ here).
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.