Dell Venue 8 Pro: Eight inches of 8.1 for under £250

In September, we reported on Dell’s intention to release an eight inch, Windows 8.1 tablet under the Venue name. Well, the time has now come for the diminutive device to grace the stores and show you what it’s capable of.

Coming in at a wallet friendly £249, the Venue 8 Pro is more modestly spec’d.

  • Intel Atom Z3740D (1.8GHz Quad-Core) Processor
  • 2GB DDR3 RAM
  • 32GB eMMC Hard Drive + Micro SD Card
  • Intel HD Graphics on a 1280x800 display
  • Dell Wireless 1538 802.11n card + Bluetooth 4.0
  • Dual cameras
  • 2830mAh battery – up to 9.9 hours on a single charge

Dell are to give you the option of adding a keyboard, stylus and folio cover to the bundle, as well as touting the WiDi (or wireless display capabilities to you and me) features as a selling point. With Office 2013 Home and Student Edition bundled in, you won’t be incapable of actually being productive on a device of this type. Angry Birds never counts as productive!

All in all, it’s not a bad device. It’s surprisingly nice too look at, is a nice size, and comes in at a reasonable 395g - the iPad Air comes in at 469g, but it’s 1.5mm thinner.

The Venue 8 Pro is also the type of device that could easily act as a companion to another tablet, such as an iPad or Galaxy Tab, especially if you want or need the Windows 8 experience. And at the price point that Dell are starting at, it’s a more attractive offer than you would think.

Source and image: Dell | Thanks to forum member dopydope for the tip!

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Don't forget that by installing Bluestacks on this device, you can run any Android app that you deemed necessary to have. So no more Android tablet needed as a companion

I picked this up for my mom. The device is very fast and responsive, and has great battery life. It's a little big compared to 7" tablets, but as a result the windows desktop is actually fairly usable without stylus. The touch points seem to be very precise when poking at the desktop gui, and of course it works great in the metro ui.

Lets just consider that @KingMustard that the Surface Pro with full Windows 8.1 runs an Intel Haswell i5 chip with HD graphics. This one runs Atom. Also the Surface RT has a Tegra 4 with a 1080p screen, and it is larger.

[quote=danielmac123 said, Also the Surface RT has a Tegra 4 with a 1080p screen, and it is larger. [/quote]The Surface RT does not run Tegra4 and has 1366x768 resolution..What you refer to is the Surface 2.

It is a very interesting device, it runs W8.1 Pro which is a big plus for me but it has some serious issues with handwriting. Dell has released a patch to fix it but I am not sure if it is just a software problem or hardware related as well. I was tempted to buy it but I might wait for a 8" Surface... if it will run W8.1 Pro of course.

This is the full version of Windows 8.1 and not RT, nice

I wonder what the battery life is like compared to my Tab 2 10.1?

Had a play with this at work last Friday. It's a really, really nice device and such good value given that it's running full Win 8.1.

This is running the x86 version of Windows 8.1, right? Thinking of replacing my wife's Android tab with a Windows one as she -needs- Flash compatibility for the specific sites she likes to visit and Android tends to have hissy fits with half of them...

Comparing it to the iPad mini (Retina) would be better.
The mini is 331g instead of 395g for the Dell.
For the thickness, the mini is 7.5mm versus 9mm for the Venue 8 Pro.

That atom processor doesn't look that diabolical bad, when comparing it from a N450 I have lying around my house. (Theoretically the Z3740D is 4 times faster than the N450)

Would be much better as a companion to a tablet running a real OS like a Windows tablet where you can sync tabs, settings and start screen layout across devices making for a true seamless experience. With the update for the stylus it would actually be an ideal companion to a Surface Pro or other pen-enabled Windows device. Being used as a companion to a less capable OS like ios and android makes no sense.

efjay said,
Would be much better as a companion to a tablet running a real OS like a Windows tablet where you can sync tabs, settings and start screen layout across devices making for a true seamless experience. With the update for the stylus it would actually be an ideal companion to a Surface Pro or other pen-enabled Windows device. Being used as a companion to a less capable OS like ios and android makes no sense.

Yeah, not much about the author's thinking here makes much sense. Given that the Dell Venue 8 Pro is a real PC (as well as a tablet), the iPad or Galaxy should be the companion devices.

I can't really understand why so many people have a hard time wrapping their heads around Microsoft's approach to tablets. Why must a small, touch-first device be *only* an iPad clone? Why can't it also be useful sometimes to run desktop software when docked to a large display, keyboard and mouse?

Reviewers trash the Windows desktop like it's some foreign disease, yet gush when some hack allows Android to use a mouse or access a network share. Weird.

Osiris said,
That's good value, I charge more for my 8" device although that includes 'on site' service...

LOL, I see what you did there!

fUdG3 said,
does it come with a pressure sensitive pen?

It has built in active digitizer, whatever that means, but it's supposedly better than capacitive ones used on the Notes and Galaxy Tabs.

The galaxy notes use a Wacom active digitzer. Which is the best you can get. The dell venue 8 pro and 11 pro use synaptics active digitizer. while not as good as the wacoms in the note kind it is better then the capacitive ones.

Edited by majortom1981, Nov 19 2013, 5:48pm :