Raz of MP4Nation just posted this review on his blog. Raz is a web retailer of gadgets like the A700, and he's seeking input on whether he should carry it. My vote would be no. Here are some highlights of his review:
The battery, 5500mAh, is quite large and heavy, it’s what really adds to the overall weight of the A700. Unlike similar devices, such as the SmartQ Q7, the A700 only last about 4hrs of continuous use and the battery does drain when not in use, so you have to keep the charger handy with you if traveling.
I find probably the best thing about the A700 is the linux OS that has been implemented on it. Unlike SmartQ which just smacked Ubuntu onto their player, Skytone has made a more simplified linux OS. The UI is broken down into seperate categories, each with their own set of programs, all of which are popular programs for linux. I think this layout if a great approach, right when you first turn the player on, you can easily find the program you want to use, this is certainly not something that is as easy on the Q7. People who are less familiar with linux would have no problem using this device as the UI is very straight forward.
I'm going to have to jump in here and disagree. The latest firmware for the SmartQ 7 is a vast improvement over the original. Improvement include a much improved UI, better config & settings menus, and a number of under the hood tweaks.
Although there are preloaded applications on the A700, there is a app installer also, BUT being that this is a MIPS processor there are more limited programs for this device than an ARM device like the Q7. I haven’t tried to install any programs so i can’t really comment on how the installer works on a device like this.
I know i like this device, but is it worth the price tag, even if i were to OEM it, the end retail price tag would be between $200 - $230, which is still quite a bit of money. I feel that if this were released last year then it would really have been a stand out device, but right now we’re just on the cusp of seeing every major PC manufacturer to come out with their own table device, the A700 may seem a bit dated. Even compared to the V7 the A700 maybe lacking, but the biggest selling point for the A700 is the user friendly interface, it very straight forward and easy to use.