ViewSonic ViewPad G70 pictures and hands-on

The ViewSonic ViewPad E70 is the absolute rock bottom in Ice Cream Sandwich budgetry but, if not having a rear-facing camera and just a 800 x 480-pixel display is a little coarse for you, then you might want to consider the step up model, the ViewSonic ViewPad G70.

For just £260, you get a 7-inch Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich tablet, packing 1GB RAM and 4GB of storage. Users will be able to expand the storage by a further 32GB using the integrated microSD card slot.

This time, the G70's screen is a 1024 x 600 resolution, 8-bit colour, 250 nit brightness panel with a 500:1 contrast ratio. Oddly, it's not noticeably superior to that on the E70 at first look but we can imagine it's the sort of difference that becomes apparent once you start feeding through some decent video sources which, sadly, weren't available on the device to try at Mobile World Congress 2012.

Unlike some previous ViewSonic tablets, the G70 will be fully Google certified - meaning you’ll have access to the Android Market. It comes with 3G, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, mini HDMI, Micro-USB and even Mini-USB for connecting to external USB devices. There's also a 2-megapixel rear camera and 0.3-megapixel front camera.

While it sounds all very well and good on paper, it's still a bit chunky in the hand, feeling more like the first generation of Android tablets rather than the second wave that's currently going on. Worse, though, is that the screen was pretty horrible to the touch. That said, it's not worth putting any stock in that statement right now. ViewSonic was very clear to express that the software on the device was very much a beta version and promised a far smoother experience when the G70 lands in June. We'll let you know in the full review.