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Lenovo IdeaTab S2110

Editor's rating (1-5): rating starrating starrating starrating star
Carrier: N/A, WiFi and Unlocked 3G
Manufacturer: Lenovo
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What's hot: Sharp IPS display, thin and light, superb keyboard dock, unlocked 3G option, competitive price.

What's not: Bland looking, some UI lag, though performance is otherwise very good.


Reviewed October 10, 2012 by , Editor in Chief (twitter: @lisagade)

Lenovo's IdeaTab Android tablets haven't been wildly popular here in the US, though they're strong overseas. They've been low to midrange products with few unique features. That's changed with the Lenovo IdeaTab S2110. Like the Asus Transformer line of Android tablets and some upcoming Windows 8 tablets, the S2110 is available with a keyboard dock that turns the 10.1" slate into a small laptop substitute.

Lenovo IdeaTab S2110

The 16 gig model starts at $429 ($549 when bundled with the keyboard dock), and a 32 gig version costs $50 more. Lenovo often has sales, so you might be able to grab it for less-- for example as of this writing, the 32 gig model with keyboard dock is priced at just $499. That's quite competitive with Asus' less expensive Transformer, the Transformer Pad TF300. The S2110 has a front video chat camera, rear 5MP camera with LED flash and the 3G version has a GPS (the GPS is not enabled on the WiFi only model, so it will use WiFi triangulation for location as does the WiFi iPad). The 0.34" tablet is very slim and it weighs just 1.3 pounds.

Lenovo IdeaTab S2110

The IdeaTab S2110 runs Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich on a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Plus CPU. That's a very fast CPU with Adreno 225 graphics and it benchmarks as well as the Tegra 3 in many tests (it managed a very good 5021 in Quadrant). Why the Qualcomm rather than Tegra 3? Because the S2110 is available with optional 3G, and Qualcomm integrates their CPUs and wireless radios easily.

Design and Ergonomics

The 1.3 pound, 0.34" thick S2110 is very competitive with today's thinnest and lightest tablets. In terms of appearance, it's not a looker. From the front it looks like every other 10" tablet on the market. The back is patterned black plastic that's about as exciting as the back of the Asus Transformer Pad TF300. The frame is reasonably rigid for a piece of consumer electronics (if you try with some effort you can flex it a bit, which is true of most Android tablets with plastic backs), and the plastic back moves a teeny bit if you press firmly (it's plastic and plastic flexes, I don't consider that a design issue). This is not a super-rugged tablet like the Motorola Xoom and XYBoard models and the MIL Spec Fujitsu Stylistic M532.

Lenovo IdeaTab S2110

Where the Lenovo IdeaTab S2110 diverges from the Transformer TF300 is in its less pretty but more practical design. The TF300 (like the TF201 Prime and TF700 Infinity) have very tapered sides that leave ports with little support. The S2110 has straight sides that support and protect the ports better. It's also a little easier to hold since there actually is something to hold onto.

Lenovo IdeaTab S2110

The tablet has a microSD card slot and full size SIM card slot (on 3G models) under a plastic door, a micro HDMI port and a micro USB port that's used for charging with the included charger and transferring files to and from a computer (it does not support USB host, you'll need the keyboard dock for that). The dock connector is at the bottom edge and the volume control is on the right side while the power button is up top. Stereo speakers fire from the upper left and right sides (when held in landscape mode), so your hands won't block them. Sound is loud but harsh and shrill. You'll never miss an alarm, though you might wish you had. The tablet uses SRS TruMedia for sound enhancement.

Lenovo IdeaTab S2110


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Lenovo IdeaTab S2110 Video Review

Bright IPS Display

The tablet has a 10.1" IPS display with 420 nits of brightness. This is a very nice display that has rich colors, wide viewing angles and sharp text. The resolution is 1280 x 800, so you full HD fans will have to look elsewhere. That said, it didn't send me running back to my Asus Transformer Pad Infinity TF700 with 1920 x 1200 display. The Lenovo's IPS display is crisp, very bright, warm and natural looking. It's a great fit for movie watching (Lenovo sees media consumption as the IdeaTab line's prime directive). Text is sharp and easy to read, even if not as perfectly sculpted as on the New iPad and Asus Infinity TF700.

Performance and Horsepower

Lenovo tablets always seem to have a little bit of lag, though the S2110 is better than past Lenovo Android tablets. I don't know if it's their light but now pleasing customization of the Android user interface or something else, but it's not the fastest Android tablet when navigating around the tablet. Apps on the other hand run smoothly and quickly, it's just the basic UI that's a wee bit slower than other top tier Android tablets. That said, it's by no means a slug and we do like the visual effects (you can disable these if you wish) and custom widgets that Lenovo adds. They do install an abundance of third party apps in an effort to make this a turnkey tablet: Kindle, Accuweather, many card games, ES File Explorer, Documents to Go (an MS Office compatible suite with editing and new file creation capabilities), GameTanium, News Replublic, Norton Security, ooVoo, PrinterShare (wireless printing), Skype, and SugarSync, but some of those are actually useful (Docs to Go, ES File Explorer and SugarSync being three of our favorites) and you can install most of these if you don't want them.


  Quadrant AnTuTu Sunspider JavaScript Test
Lenovo IdeaTab S2110 5021 6978 1635
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 5349 12,777 1206
Sony Xperia Tablet S 4561 11,557 1838
Asus Transformer Pad Infinity TF700 4915 12,229 1903
Toshiba Excite 10 4143 11,056 1935
Acer Iconia Tab A700 3646 10,536 1958
Asus Transformer Pad TF300 3425 9559 2257


Keyboard Dock: a Model of Perfection

The keyboard dock is superb: the typing experience is as good as it gets for a 10.1" keyboard. Tactile feedback and key travel are very good: Lenovo knows how to make keyboards thanks to their ThinkPad heritage. The dock has a secondary battery that doubles runtimes (Lenovo claims 18-20 hours with the dock) and it has two full size USB 2.0 ports that support USB peripherals including portable hard drives (ExFAT, NTFS and FAT32), mice, keyboards, flash drives but not 3G dongles or Ethernet adapters. Our dock only supplied enough power to one USB port for portable self-powered hard drives. The keyboard dock has a full size SD card slot.

The keyboard is worlds better than Asus' for the Transformer line of Android tablets. I've never really enjoyed typing on the Transformer keyboard dock because the keys have little travel and are spongy. A word of warning: the Lenovo is a 10.1" device, and fellas with big hands will still feel cramped; this is the size of a 10.1" netbook after all.

Also improved over the Transformer tablet are balance (the Lenovo plus keyboard dock aren't tippy unlike the Asus when opened with the display pushed back beyond straight upright) and the latching mechanism that holds the tablet to the dock. The Asus models don't lock in securely and if you pick the combo up by the display they'll separate. The Lenovo mechanism is secure and the tablet and keyboard stay firmly connected. Though it might be less minimalist and pretty, the wrap-around tablet holder built into the keyboard dock serves to spread force across both front and back of tablet, so when you open or close the docked tablet, you won't put lots of pressure on the glass as with the Transformer TF300 and TF700.

The keyboard has dedicated keys for multimedia control, brightness, WiFi, 3G, Bluetooth, and the basic Android buttons (back, search and app drawer). There's an arrow pad, number row and a decent trackpad that supports simple gestures like two-finger scrolling. There's a micro USB port for charging using the charger that ships with the tablet. You can plug the charger into the tablet or the dock and the tablet will charge first, which is the right way to do the job. When disconnected from power, the S2110 will use the dock's battery first, then the tablet's (again, that's the right way to do things). This ensures that your tablet always has a charge. We didn't note any unusual discharge patterns when the tablet was left in the dock for days.


The front video chat camera gets the job done with average quality (some noise and motion blur), while the mic picks up clean voice. The rear 5 megapixel camera with LED flash is distinctly average; this isn't a shutterbug's dream. The camera uses the standard Android camera UI and it can shoot 1080p video and panoramic photos.

Battery Life

The tablet has a 2 cell Lithium Ion polymer battery that's sealed inside. Lenovo claims 9-10 hours of WiFi web browsing on a charge, and that seems a bit optimistic in our tests. We averaged 7 to 8 hours with brightness set to 50% and WiFi on. When playing movies, we averaged 6.7 hours of playback at 50% volume with the speakers in use rather than headphones. That's not wildly impressive, but Lenovo assumes you'll probably buy the keyboard dock that doubles runtimes (and it does indeed double runtimes).


The Lenovo IdeaTab S2110 is Lenovo's best tablet yet. It's slim, light, has an unlocked GSM 3G option and a fast Qualcomm S4 CPU. The IPS display is warm and rich, making it a wonderful movie playback device and the keyboard dock--well, it's just superb. As an alternative to the similarly priced Asus Transformer TF300, it makes a strong showing with good stability, a much better keyboard, better extended battery life and a more practical and robust industrial design. It may not be the prettiest tablet on the market, but it's a workhorse that can stand in for a notebook for web browsing, email, social networking, video playback and MS Office work.

Price: Starting at $429



Lenovo IdeaTab S2110


Lenovo IdeaTab S2110


Lenovo IdeaTab S2110


Lenovo IdeaTab S2110


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Display: 10.1" capacitive IPS touch screen (420 nits brightness). Resolution: 1280 x 800, supports both portrait and landscape modes. Has micro HDMI port.

Battery: 2 cell Lithium Ion Polymer rechargeable. Battery is not replaceable. Optional keyboard dock adds secondary battery to double runtimes.

Performance: 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 8060A dual core CPU with 1 gig DDR2 RAM and 16 or 32 gigs storage.

Size: 10.2 x 7.0 x 0.34 inches. Weight: 1.3 pounds.

Cellular: GSM with 3G (unlocked) is optional.

GPS: On 3G model only, otherwise it uses WiFi triangulation.

Camera: 1.3MP front camera and rear 5 megapixel camera with LED flash that can shoot 1080p video and panoramas.

Audio: Built in stereo speakers with SRS TruMedia Sound, mic and 3.5mm standard stereo combo headphone jack.

Networking: Single band WiFi 802.11b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0.

Software: Android OS 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich with light Lenovo customization (widgets and animations). Standard suite of Google Android applications including web browser, email, Gmail, YouTube, Maps, Navigation, Gtalk, Search and Google Play Store. Lots of third party apps bundled including Documents to Go (view, create and edit MS Office documents), PrinterShare, Norton Security, various card games, SugarSync and Evernote.

Expansion: Two USB 2.0 full size ports with host capability on optional keyboard dock. Micro HDMI port, 3.5mm combo audio jack, SIM card slot (full size) on 3G model. Full size SD card slot on keyboard dock.


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