Epad ZT-180 Android Tablet Review

If you think the image above is an iPad, you would be wrong. It’s the Epad ZT-180 Android Tablet. Android tablets seem to be all over the place lately, but the big boys (Samsung, Motorola, etc.) are pretty pricey. DHGate sent me an inexpensive Epad to review. Do you get what you pay for? Let’s take a look. Note: The images in this review can be clicked for a larger view.

Hardware Specs

Processor: CPU Zenithink ZT108 1.0Ghz
Memory: 512M RAM, 4GB
OS Version: ANDRIOD2.2
Display: 10.2″, resistive touch display, 1024*600 resolution
Communication: WiFi
Expansion: microSD card slot
I/O ports: 1*USB 2.0 Host port, 1*USB 2.0 OTG port
Front facing camera

Package Contents

Epad tablet
Ethernet adapter
AC adapter
Case with keyboard (not pictured)

The Epad (on the right) looks very similar to the iPad (on the left). Both have a black bezel, a silver colored case and one main button.

The differences other than the OS that powers them is that the Epad has a plastic case and display. With regards to the display, it’s resistive instead of capacitive. More about that in a bit.

There are also quite a few connections / ports. The right side has the microphone, HDMI connector, reset switch, headphone jack, USB host port, USB OTG port and power adapter.

Note that the HDMI port is not the standard size that I’m used to dealing with. So you would need an adapter of some sort in order to connect it to your TV.

The USB Host port can be used to connect a mouse or a keyboard (wish there were 2 of these ports) to this tablet. I tested both and love being able to use a mouse. As soon as you plug in a USB mouse, you’ll see an arrow pointer appear on the display and you can use the mouse to move it around and control the tablet like you would a regular desktop or laptop computer. Since this tablet doesn’t have Bluetooth, you can’t use a mouse and a keyboard at the same time. Bummer.

The USB OTG port is a mini USB connector that allows you to connect the tablet to your desktop or laptop to transfer files back and forth.

Along the top edge, you’ll find the volume switch a network connector. Next to that connector is the power switch and microSD card slot.

You’ll find two speakers along the bottom edge.

The 10.2″ display is pretty nice, but there are a couple big gotchas. The first one is that this tablet does not have a capacitive display. It’s resistive. That means you have to press the screen with some authority. No multi-touch features either… That means no two fingered zooming in and out. It also doesn’t have a very wide viewing angle. That said, it’s large and bright and is comfortable to use for surfing and reading when you’re viewing it head on.

The other gotcha is that the display doesn’t rotate. It’s always in landscape orientation… Maybe there is something wrong with my sample, but I doubt it. I was wrong, it does rotate. I saw it do it once. But I am unable to repeat it. I guess the accelerometer is defective.

The Epad comes with all the stock apps (calendar, contacts, Gmail, Browser, etc.). Also included are Skype, a File manager, Task Manager, Twitter, Facebook, an Office Suite and Angry Birds.

The performance of this tablet is decent. Apps start up pretty quickly. One other thing to consider is that there’s no option to upgrade the OS as new versions become available.

The menu bar at the top of the screen has some touch areas to control the tablet. There’s a small home icon on the left side that always goes to the home screen when pressed. You’ll also notice the arrow and menu buttons on the opposite side. The arrow goes back one screen and the menu button pops up a menu for the app that you happen to be in. The only other icon that you’ll use is the lock. It turns off the display. That brings me to another big gotcha with this tablet. It does NOT have an idle mode. When you press the power button, it does not put the tablet in idle like you would expect. Instead, it only gives you the option to power it down. This is a big deal… Having no idle mode means that the tablet is always on and always sucking juice. If you have Wifi on, you’ll be lucky to get 4-5 hrs of life out of this tablet. Not good…

The Epad isn’t a bad Android tablet, but it sure has some issues (battery life, display). With a price tag of $200, it’s hard to be that picky when it’s a full fledged tablet. They even throw in a nice case with a USB keyboard built in. I wouldn’t want to use this as my only tablet, but for someone that has a limited budget and wants to try an Android tablet, it’s an option if you don’t want to save more money for a better one.

 

Product Information

Price:$200.64
Retailer:DHGate
Pros:
  • 10" display
  • Relatively inexpensive
  • USB host mode for keyboards and mice
  • Keyboard/case included
  • WiFi
Cons:
  • Poor battery life
  • No idle mode
  • Resistive display instead of capacitive
  • Lacks Bluetooth
  • Can't upgrade the OS
Posted in: Android related, Reviews

{ 43 comments… add one }

  • Ronald May 20, 2011, 7:39 am

    Still surprising how well, how high, Apple set the standard with their iPAD(2).

    You’d think by now the compettitors would have had time enough to bypass Apple.

    Amazing performance of Apple.

    1
  • Bob DeLoyd May 21, 2011, 5:22 am

    @Ronald I have to agree with you there. The iPad is quite a wonderful device. I like my Microsoft Windows so I’m not an Apple fan, I do have a MacBook but don’t really care for OSX; I purchase what works for me and don’t really care who puts it out :) I wasn’t going to buy an iPad because I thought it was hobbled not having a USB or SD slot but I got a good price on one when the iPad2 came out. Now the iPad they got right and I love it. I was so impressed with the iPad that I bought an iPod Touch that I love even more because I take it everywhere I go.

    2
  • Bob DeLoyd May 21, 2011, 4:04 pm

    Not being able to upgrade to the newest Android OS is a killer for me on this Tablet :(
    Also, there are other Tabs out there around the same or cheaper price that run Android 2.2. I believe that 2.2 is the low end of the update dealybob thingamajig :p

    3
  • Jeff Mac May 21, 2011, 10:39 pm

    Julie,

    Curious if you tried using the USB port with a hub to hook up mouse and keyboard simultaneously? Also, any issues getting on the Marketplace with it and adding new apps?

    4
  • Julie May 21, 2011, 11:27 pm

    @Jeff Mac No, I haven’t tried a hub, but I’ll try to do that and report back in the next day or so.

    No issues with the marketplace or adding apps.

    5
  • danimal May 23, 2011, 8:24 am

    Julie, I’d be very careful…I bought one of those Ipad knockoffs from China on ebay for 125 bucks and it was great…while it lasted. And it lasted for about a month and a half—after that it would work for about 20 min and shut off…later on it would turn on and immediately turn off, and finally, it stopped working altogether…it called itself an “EPAD”…

    6
  • Max Bennett June 30, 2011, 11:59 am

    This tablet is slow. I bought one and am sending it back. The perfomance is unacceptable. I say save your money and put it towards a better device. Once up and running you have less than 100MB of free memory, if you leave background sync on (which the android market wants), it really bogs this thing down. It has a resistive touch screen so you have to press really hard. It doesn’t support multi-touch and generally you need to use the stylus provided to make it work. Slow, Slow, Slow, need I say more.

    7
  • Jay Jay July 4, 2011, 7:07 am

    I just recently got my tablet. can anyone advise as to which SD card brand/size would be best to acquire?

    8
  • dyl July 28, 2011, 9:02 am

    can i connect my usb internet moden to the epad…(not a 3G modem tho)

    9
  • Dave Gould July 28, 2011, 1:44 pm

    Hi All,
    I have got the Zenithink Android 2.2 10.2″ Tablet PC.
    It is exactly the same ad the one above.
    The Battery will last All Day 8hrs with the Wi-Fi on Fantastic..!!
    The only thing is that the discription says that there is an FM Radio installed. But I cannot find it (No Icon).
    Everything workd great on this Tablet PC, The Internet is just as fast as my Laptop on Wi-Fi.
    Thanks Dave Gould..

    10
  • VGWhite July 28, 2011, 11:23 pm

    I have the same question as “dyl”: Can I use a wireless USB modem with the Android 2.2 ZT-180? It’s a tri-band.

    11
  • Julie July 29, 2011, 10:03 am

    @VGWhite I’m really not sure about using a USB modem with this tablet. I’m assuming it would need a driver of some sort in order to work…

    12
  • Bob DeLoyd July 29, 2011, 11:12 am

    Finally I got a day off and away from everyone so I did what I like to do and that’s play with my computers. I bought this Mid M009 7” Android 2.2 Froyo tablet running a VIA VM8650 800Mhz processor about a month or two ago; hell maybe three or four I forget, on eBay for $80.
    Anyways I wanted to try some new firmware on it to make it run better. Well I went to a site called merimobiles.com a very helpful site. They had one (M7 for $75 shipped) just like the one I bought on eBay (I thought) and did what the site said and it turned my tablet into a brick; oops! My fault! I found that I had the tablet with the green LED and not the blue one like the tablet on their site; I guess that matters a lot :)
    So I hunted around online for another firmware update for my cheap tablet. These updates are custom done by hackers (there are good ones- the other’s are scum) who try to gain more speed and get rid of unwanted crap that the manufacturer puts on these while also keeping up their device updates. You really can’t do stuff like this on an iPad (and I wouldn’t want to on mine) because it’s all proprietary and besides that Steve would probably sue you. The site where I bought my Android tablet on eBay of course wasn’t any help. So I searched and searched and finally found one that might work called Uberoid V6. I had to change the Changelog thingy in it three times and it seems that changing it to option 8 worked, not great but it worked; I can try the others later.
    It booted up just fine. Dang, when I put in my Google name and password and it synced all my contacts- the other build from the manufacturer didn’t. I have my Kindle, DropBox, Google Docs, but Skype didn’t work (figures). It’ll play Flash but I think I’ll just use it for email and to surf the web in places where the environment is hostile to my iPad. Aw such fun for $80!!!

    13
  • dan August 13, 2011, 10:35 pm

    I have An epad And the damn thing is a piece of crap. Battery life is horrible And the damn thing keeps freezing after reboot. I have to keep reloading the tablet because it loses its memory. This truly is a piece of crap. I just bought a motorola xoom And it is awesome. Don’t waste your money on An epad. Spend a bit more And get a good one like the xoom.

    14
  • STENSDEN August 17, 2011, 3:02 pm
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  • Meagan August 27, 2011, 10:53 pm

    Hey I just bought an e pad off eBay and i would have to say I’m very disappointed after i had played on my grandmas Samsung galaxy tab it so much better and faster and the graphics are great compared to this chincy e pad. The e pad touch screen is hard to get to work well with out it opening an app instead of sliding to the next screen you really got to press on it. I personally think it was a cheep pad put together with an andriod system. If you have the chance save for an samsung galaxy tab you wont be disappointed. And also look into getting a “hot spot” you will have wireless where ever you go….and wouldnt have to waste time trying to get connected.

    16
  • Bob DeLoyd August 28, 2011, 1:09 pm

    @Meagan comparing an E-Pad to your Grandma’s Samsung Galaxy Tab is like comparing a tuna sandwich to a porterhouse steak dinner with salad and baked potato.
    Since you already have the E-Pad why don’t you mess with the system… Try putting on Uberoid V6- @STENSDEN was kind enough to put a link to it above. Also read my post above, too. This is a good way, messing with a cheap tablet, to learn about Android and not mess up your Granny’s Galaxy :)

    17
  • joaephine October 25, 2011, 6:55 pm

    errr i just got the epad for $170 from a local shop, and i dont know wat to do with it. i feel horrible.

    18
  • Bob DeLoyd October 25, 2011, 9:27 pm

    @Joaephine TAKE IT BACK TO THE STORE!!!!!

    19
  • tj November 16, 2011, 5:17 am

    howto reformat it??????????????????????? thank

    20
  • stensden November 16, 2011, 11:46 am
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  • Mahsa November 20, 2011, 9:57 am

    Hi , I bought this Epad zt180 ,, but it dosn’t read many programs like yahoo msngr , or Media Player . n it doesn’t know Flash Memories too , i dunno wht can i do with it . would u plz help me if u know how to work with it ?!

    22
  • James November 20, 2011, 10:57 pm

    Hi Mahsa, you need apps to run those programs, go to the Android store and search for apps for what you want the tablet to do. Media player is a windows program, your epad is running android.

    You need a certain kind of flash memory for above 2gb. Sorry cant remember the name of it off my head.

    If you need to view flash websites use a flash browser like SkyFire.

    23
  • duane November 26, 2011, 9:03 am

    I bought one last year, knowing its not a Ipad, because of its screen size I only used it to read my comics. I was happy until it broke 7 months later…

    24
  • Anna November 27, 2011, 3:53 am

    Hi, I have just bought an android, 7″, 2.2 tablet from ebay.
    There is no sound coming from the tablet at all, including notifications or when am playing media files. I have tried headphones & managed to acheive sound through them, but still no sound from the unit itself. In my settings all volume is on maximum.
    Please help. I think I have been conned, the guy on ebay isn’t getting back to me either :(
    Thanks

    25
  • LAURI January 9, 2012, 4:21 pm

    what kind of sd card can this take it says up to 32gb I bought a sandisk 16gb and it wouldn’t read it Please help

    26
  • youngblord January 29, 2012, 3:00 am

    really am confused, a friend of mine jus got this product yesterday and wants me to buy mine too,buh after going through all this reviews am kina confused,i really do need a device that can substitute the laptop for a while and i dont want to spend much,help!!!!!

    27
  • Bob DeLoyd January 29, 2012, 5:24 pm

    @youngblord I don’t have anything to do with this company, but Merimobiles has some cheap ones, also they have some video reviews; I’ve found it a useful site… You can look them up with Google…

    28
  • ISPYCOOKIE2 February 4, 2012, 11:41 pm

    Well, I have an android chines tablet and the battery lasts up to at least 6hours. but I still need to work out the kinks that linux has on it. It was a gift, wouldn’t Tell everyone , who has never used linux to go out and buy this tablet (super pocket i7) because not many are programmers or IT techies. Just saying if you buy a cheap one , YOu will get an android with linux. and well If you like to teak out the kinks then by all means POWER TO you, but if you’re like most consumers, are MICROWSOFTE FRiendly users, then Yes, the expensive Tablets are for you.

    29
  • katrina February 25, 2012, 11:23 am

    hi i have this tablet and it worked fine but now when i turn it on it says epad in middle then penguin in corner and then just word android with a flashing cursor and wont go any further had it to 2 pc shops and they could not fix it can anyone help

    30
  • Darry March 11, 2012, 6:36 pm

    I bought an epad and when I brought it to by office, my buisness partner gave me 3 ipads for it!

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  • Bob DeLoyd March 11, 2012, 9:03 pm

    @Darry only three? You should have held out for five :(

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  • Mohamed M komba April 14, 2012, 5:56 am

    hi i have this tablet and it worked fine but now when i turn it on it says epad in middle then penguin in corner and then just word android with a flashing cursor and wont go any further had it to 2 pc shops and they could not fix it can anyone help

    33
  • Bob DeLoyd April 14, 2012, 3:03 pm

    @Mohamed M komba, sounds like you need to replace the firmware. Basically you download Uberoid to your computer and unzip and run. Find out which number is right for your tablet at the website and then load it onto the SD drive from your tablet, put that in the tablet and turn on. If the number you picked didn’t work, try another number. I did this several times until I found the right one because my tablet was off brand.

    I’m writing this all from memory just to give you an idea what the process is, so you really need to read up on it at the website.
    Go here:
    http://www.techknowforum.net/forum/index.php?topic=264.0

    :)

    34
  • Loopydoop. May 1, 2012, 4:28 pm

    Oh my gosh… It sucks so bad.

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  • Bob DeLoyd May 1, 2012, 5:29 pm

    @Loopydoop agreed! Now you have something you can experiment with. Try downloading Uberoid and feel the joy of hacking the EPad….

    36
  • Bob May 17, 2012, 11:46 am

    I bought one off play.com for £149.99.
    I wish i never bought it, its rubbish and hardly does what it says in the description, the screen cracked and i dont know what to do. I wish I read the reviews before i bought it and i suggest to others to do so.

    37
  • Melvin July 7, 2012, 6:35 pm

    I like the epad very much, but my touch screen will not respone. do anyone know how to unlock the screen?

    38
  • L Brault November 24, 2012, 12:40 pm

    My EPad will not power up, with or without power cord..took it to Best Buy, can’t be fixed, need a new one and the worst part you can’t retrieve anything off the tablet..POS

    39
  • marge November 27, 2012, 9:26 pm

    my husband leaned on the screen and broke it . Can I fix it where can I get a screen from , is it easy and worth it ?

    40
  • lauren November 28, 2012, 9:11 am

    The Talet is rubbbish i would say dont buy one of these they are crap and rubbish for the price. you can’t even view photos on it

    Mnay thanks

    41
  • badon February 1, 2013, 1:53 am

    Hey i have a question about the epad !!
    I have recently purchased an epad but whenever i switch it on it comes up with android_ and keeps on flashing on and of and i cant turn the device on.. i need help with this because i really want to try this device out so if you could help me out it would be great thanks :)

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  • Bob DeLoyd February 1, 2013, 12:37 pm

    @badon
    If you can’t return it (which would be best), you have searched the forums and found no answers, and you tried a factory reset…
    do a search for Uberoid Android custom download… then follow instructions to root your device. You install it on the micro SD. It might take you a few attempts until you select the right number for your device.
    If none of this works it just might be a bricked tablet…
    Hope this helps :)

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