Tesco Hudl Review

Blog-Every-Day-in-November-with-RosaliliumThe suggested task for #BEDN today is to talk about something different.  This is very convenient for me as I am itching to tell you about my new gadget!  I am now lucky enough to be the proud owner of a Hudl – the recently launched Tesco tablet.  Here is my initial review…..

I have wanted a tablet for a long time, mainly for the convenience of staying in touch without having to lug my laptop about with me.  The Hudl has a 7″ screen which is perfect for slipping in your handbag and the perfect screen size to work with.  I already know that it will be fantastically handy for me when travelling, working on the go and on live event days.  Also worth noting is that the Hudl comes with 16GB of storage, however this is expandable to  48GB total with a 32GB memory card.

I own the black Hudl, complete with a smart red case, but a variety of colour options are available.  I would suggest that you don’t buy a Tesco case as you can buy alternatives for a quarter of the price!

It was easy to get started – the first time you switch on the Hudl it walks you through the set up and basic features.  The tablet comes preloaded with certain apps such as Google Play (the app store), Google Maps, Chrome, YouTube and Gmail.  It also includes Blinkbox TV and Music.  I had never used either of these services before but Blinkbox Music is a great feature and completely free.  You can select “stations” which match your musical interests and star your favourite songs which builds an intelligent playlist.  You can then download your favourite songs which makes them available to listen in offline mode too.  In return you have to listen to an occasional advert.  The sound quality and volume was good playing out from the Hudl.

Blinkbox TV will be handy as you just pay for the films or TV shows you want to watch with no subscription fee.  Apparently it is also easy to hook your Hudl up to your TV (additional lead must be purchased to connect via micro-HDMI port).

I have an Android Google phone (Nexus) and so I was adamant I wanted an Android tablet, rather than an Ipad.  I also have a big respect for Google and the Android platform from working with our app developer to launch our Event App (and the forthcoming wedding app) through sister company Advanced Event Solutions Ltd.  As anticipated it was easy for me to look at the apps I had already downloaded  to my phone and select the ones I wanted to duplicate to my Hudl (go to the play store and log in to your account, then touch the play store on the top left menu bar, select my apps and then scroll down the list of all apps, select the app you want and then install).

I charged my Hudl up for the full suggested three hours before I switched it on and battery life seems good.  Despite 2 long nights of constant use I still have a third of the battery left.

So what are the disadvantages of the Hudl?  The only real disadvantage I can see so far is that unlike many other tablets you cannot add a pay as you go sim card for 3G connection when wi-fi is not available.  The 2MP front and 3MP back camera could also be sharper.

As you would expect Tesco’s have very cleverly preloaded widgets onto the Hudl linking to your Clubcard points, home shopping delivery, Tesco Extra store and Blinkbox.  These can however be removed (press on the widget and swipe towards the cross in the top left corner; when it is over the cross and turns red let go and it will delete).  This will give a lot more screen space to organise your apps.  The only one that cannot be deleted is the Tescos ‘T’ symbol in the bottom left corner.

In a future post I will look at the Android apps I find indispensable.

The Hudl retails at £119.  I would highly recommended the Hudl if you are looking for an Android tablet which is well priced and packed with features.  I had read and heard a lot of good reviews of the Hudl and already I feel that I cannot live without mine! 

Do you have a Hudl?  What do you love or hate about it?  What are your top tips and indispensable apps?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments box below.

 

Our search for a generic and recognisable blog logo

Recently we launched our new Events Northern Ltd website.  It was important to us that the new site linked through to our blog, both via the website and also via social media buttons on our email footers.

Becki Cross, MD, Events Northern Ltd

New Events Northern website

Our web design company automatically suggested using the Blogger logo alongside our other social media buttons to click through to our blog.  As we have a WordPress blog though we were resistant to this.  Although we realise that the Blogger logo is widely recognisable to many people as a blog link, we have a WordPress blog and so it seemed wrong to us to use in essence a competitor logo to click through to our blog.  However we discovered that the WordPress logo seemed to be less identifiable to people.  After a quick straw poll we found that some did not recognise and relate the WordPress logo to a blog at all and others viewed it more as a content management system or website builder platform and so it seemed to confuse those that we questioned about it.  This came as a surprise to me as I was familiar with WordPress as a blog publishing platform long before we started our own company blog and anticipated that others would also recognise it most strongly with blog content.

This led to a debate in the office about the best solution and we turned to the READY2SPARK LinkedIn Group (marketing communications for event planning) for some guidance as we didn’t want to hold up the launch of our website.

Lara McCulloch-Carter (@ready2spark) and Jim Spellos (@jspellos) were particularly helpful responding to my post.  If we decided against using the WordPress icon Lara suggested having a blog header or creating our own custom blog icon that signified a blog.

Jim advised that the B Blogger logo, technically, is the Blogger logo from Google. He advised that although many people appear to be using it as a generic blogging icon this is not accurate.  It is a trademarked icon so people should tread carefully and definitely avoid using it incorrectly as this is infringement.  He explained that

“It would be like using the Facebook logo to redirect your users to MySpace or another social networking service.”

He also flagged up Google’s terms of use which prohibit the use of the logo outside of their terms.

Generic blog logo

Universal blog icon

We were in agreement with this advice and luckily we then stumbled across a solution in the form of a blog post by Brendan Mitchell from March 2009.  Brendan had come up against the same problem years earlier and couldn’t believe that with the prevalence of blogging there was no standard icon for blogs.  He therefore tasked himself with creating a universally recognised, standard blog icon in the hope that in years to come everyone would be using it.  He based the icon design on the standard RSS feed icon and through his website (www.theblogicon.com) he provides various formats and colour variations of the logo for free and without any restrictions, including various sizes of the logos in PNG, GIF formats, plus Photoshop & Illustrator vector files.

We were delighted to find a universal and recognisable Blog logo which we are comfortable and happy to use.  Brendan’s orange version of the universal blog icon now has pride of place both on our website and on our email footers.

I hope others can benefit from using the logos too.  To show our gratitude to Brendan and to save other businesses the time searching and deliberating over this issue we hope that our blog post will further spread the word!

We would love to hear your thoughts and comments!

To share your support for the universal blog icon please follow the links below:

www.theblogicon.com

http://www.twitter.com/brendanmitchell

http://www.facebook.com/brendanmitchell

http://www.linkedin.com/in/brendanmitchell