|SKK Mobile Marian Tab Review: Primetime Tablet|
Octa core smartphones are very common these days, but an octa core tablet is still very rare at this point. If my memory serves me right, it is only SKK Mobile among the local brands that has it - the Marian Tab.
The Marian Tab is not just a second rate tablet, in fact, it ticks all the check marks of being a high-end one. It boasts a stunning 7-inch capacitive IPS display with WUXGA (1920x1200) resolution, under the hood is a MediaTek MT6592 processor with 8 CPU cores clocked at 1.7GHz coupled with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of ROM.
The packaging is the typical blue box, it contains the unit with pre-installed screen protector, battery, charger, USB cable, wired headset, user manual, warranty card plus the FREE Smart Case and another screen protector.
The front is fully laminated with glass, the bezels are of the right size and put on the proper use. Below the touchscreen you have the usual capacitive keys of different shapes while above the display you will find the earpiece grill, multi-colored LED notification, hidden sensors and the 5MP secondary camera.
The back is made of high grade plastic with matte finish and rubbery feel, it is resistant to smudges and fingerprints. The main camera is located at the center-top, directly below it is the LED flash while the loudspeaker grill is placed on the part. There is also an instructional sticker in the middle, above it is the SKK Mobile branding while below it is the Marian Tab logo.
|Back without cover|
The Marian Tab is one of the few tablets in the market that has a removable back cover, once you take it off, you will see a huge 4000mAh battery, the micro SD slot, the regular and micro SIM slots.
The volume rocker is located at the left side while the power//lock button can be found at the right side.
The top houses the 3.5mm audio jack while the bottom holds both the microphone pin hole and the micro USB port.
It has a superb build quality that clearly positioned itself as a high-end device, the 7.7mm waistline adds to its premium vibe and better handling. It terms of design, I can say that it is the sexiest and has the best looks among any other SKK Mobile tablet.
|7-inch WUXGA display|
The Marian Tab has WUXGA (1920x1200) resolution, the highest among SKK Mobile devices and I believed among any other devices from all the local brands. The display is very impressive and viewing angles are really wide plus the colors are very realistic and vibrant. It also supports up to 10-point touch.
This tablet has the essential sensors to aid in its daily tasks, namely accelerometer, light, proximity, orientation and magnetic, all of them are properly working both on app testing and real world use.
|Antutu - 26579|
|Quadrant - 16567|
|Vellamo, Multicore - 1420, Metal - 890 & Browsers - 1589 & 1923|
|NemaMark2 - 50.3fps|
Underneath the Marian Tab is a 1.7GHz octa core MediaTek MT6592 processor coupled with 2GB of ROM, this is a powerful combination already proven to raise the bar on the usual benchmarks that we are using.
Like most local brands, it runs on stock Android 4.4 KitKat user interface. The lockcsreen is the usual padlock icon, which you can drag anywhere to unlock the device. The homescreen has seven shortcuts docked at the bottom, the middle always opens the app drawer while the remaining six can be customized any way you like. By the way, the whole interface together with the stock Android applications can be viewed by either landscape or portray mode.
The phone basic functions such as telephony, phonebook, email and messaging are all working fine accordingly.
The gallery offers different viewing options, namely grid and filmstrip, you can also filter the items by either albums, times or location. Anything under the gallery can be shared locally or online, it also offers editing tools for both photos and videos.
Video Player, Music Player and FM Radio:
|Video player, music player and FM radio|
The video player can play videos of different file types up to 1080p resolution, however, those with AC3 audio are played without a sound. Watching on its WUXGA screen is really stunning and pleasurable, not only for yourself, but also for a small group of people.
The music player will list all the audio files available on your device, the Now Playing screen will display the album art if that song has it plus the song information such as artist, title and album are also shown. Meanwhile, the FM radio needs a headset to work, channels can be scanned automatically or manually. In terms of the loudspeaker's audio quality, it is crisp and clear, however, the sound itself is a bit weak or soft.
Camera and Video:
|Camera and video|
The still and video camera share the same interface, a simple UI that we are all familiar with. At the bottom you have the settings icon, the shutter keys and the thumbnail of the last item you captured while at the upper part you have the shooting modes (for pictures) and the video length.
|Night without flash|
|Night with flash|
The tablet is equipped with an 18MP main camera which produces images with quality details and right amount of colors. The noise is lesser when there is a good lighting while at night or darker environment the noise becomes more evident whether you trigger the flash or not. In terms of flash performance, it can really brighten up the subject. The macro/close-up shots are also good, it gives good bokeh and can focus on any subject with at least three inches in range.
For web browsing, you can use either the Opera browser or the stock Android browser, both are pretty similar and provide quick response whenever you requested a new page.
|Dead Trigger 2|
|Dungeon Hunter 4|
|Heroes of Order & Chaos|
I installed some of the most graphically demanding games such as Despicable Me, Dead Trigger 2, Asphalt 7, Dungeon Hunter 4 and Heroes of O & C, all of them are very smooth and responsive.
The tablet has 16GB of internal storage, however, only 13.42GB is available - 1.97GB of internal storage and 11.45GB of the phone storage. You cannot install the apps to the micro SD card, if you want to do this, you need to root your device.
It has two SIM slots, one for regular and one for micro, both supports 3G/HSPA+ which you can share via WiFi hotspot, Bluetooth or USB tethering. The WiFi on board the tablet works well, signal reception is strong and no drop connection experienced.
It also has wireless display functionality or commonly known as Miracast, we put it under test and it did just fine. The micro USB port has OTG function, external flash drive and mouse both worked OK. Other connectivity features include Bluetooth and CTIA compliant 3.5mm audio jack.
It can also increase your productivity on the road with the pre-installed apps like calculator, calendar, to do, file manager, sound recorder and clock. There is no office viewer/editor, but you can download one for free in the Play Store.
The box shows that it has GPS, the system setting says it too as well as the popular GPS apps, however, it cannot have a satellite lock for whatever reason. I tested it in different places at different time, however, I still unable to have satellite lock even at least one. I do not know whether it is just a bug or defect in my unit, I still need to check this matter with SKK Mobile and we will give you update soon once we have the confirmation.
The Marian Tab has 4000mAh battery, it lasted for about 5 hours during our video loop test while on game loop test it managed to last around 3 hours. These results may not look impressive, but in reality they are better when compared to other octa core devices that we reviewed.
The retail package comes with a Smart View cover, when use, it provide a window wherein you can view several information. The S View window is composed of two pages, one for the clock and notifications, the second one gives you access to camera, calendar and music player. Surprisingly, it worked pretty well and responsive too.
One benefit of Android KitKat is the Anti-theft feature, you can find it under the Settings>Security. Once enabled, you can remotely lock or wipe out the data on your phone provide that the SIM card is still inserted.
The tablet has multiple colored LED notification lights, seven to be exact, all of them are working and can be assigned to calls, messages and general notifications.
If you turn on this feature, the LED flash will light up and blink multiple times when there is an incoming call.
It also has gesture sensing which you can use to control gallery, music player and the camera by just waving your hand in front of the tablet.
There is no doubt that the Marian Tab is the best tablet from SKK Mobile line-up and among other competing local brands. It has a very powerful hardware, a very stunning display and outstanding performance.
However, the main concern in getting this device is its price, it has an SRP of Php19,999, which is expensive whichever way you look at it. It is a price point that no other local brand has dared to cross.
7-inch IPS WUXGA display
1.7GHz octa core MT6592 processor
2GB of ROM
Great overall performance
Dual SIM with HSPA+
Rich retail package
GPS not working
- Dual SIM dual standby, supports dual HSPA+
- 7-inch capacitive IPS WUXGA (1920x1200) touchscreen display
- Android 4.4.2 KitKat
- 1.7GHz Octa Core CPU, 700MHz Mali-450MP GPU MediaTek MT6592 chipset
- 2GB of RAM
- 16GB internal storage, expandable up to 32GB via MicroSD
- 18MP main camera with LED Flash
- 5MP secondary camera
- WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, WiFi Direct, WiFi Hotspot, Miracast
- 3.5 Audio Jack
- Stereo FM Radio
- Multimedia Player
- Micro USB 2.0 with OTG support
- Bluetooth v4.0
- Sensors: accelerometer, proximity, light, magnetic and orientation
- 4000mAh removable battery
- Freebies: Smart case and screen protector
- Price: Php19,999