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Viewsonic VSD 220 Smart Display review

Reviews
Published 
4 Feb 2013
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Our Rating 
2/5
Price when reviewed 
310
inc VAT
User Rating 
5.0 out of 10 Read 2 reviews

An ambitious idea, but this Android-powered all-in-one PC fails to make an impression

Page 1 of 3Viewsonic VSD 220 Smart Display review

Specifications

1GHz , 1GB RAM, 21.5in 1,920x1,080 display, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich

The Viewsonic VSD220 is quite unlike anything we’ve seen before. Its Smart Display moniker implies it’s a simple monitor, the VSD220’s home hub defines itself as a tablet, but it’s actually a 22in all-in-one PC that’s powered by Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. Of course, its size alone means we can’t really group it together with Apple’s iPad or the Samsung Galaxy Tab, but we’d be hard pushed to say this monitor-PC hybrid felt like anything else.

Viewsonic VSD 220 Smart Display

If you’re familiar with Android tablets and smartphones you’ll have no trouble at all with the VSD220. When you first start it up, it’ll take you through signing into your Gmail and Google Play accounts (all on its giant, onscreen keyboard) before depositing you into its five-panel home hub where you’ll keep all your apps and widgets. These are completely customisable, and some of the widgets on offer include Google+ posts, YouTube, Google Search, TuneIn, your bookmarks, and the Google Play Store. Its 1,920x1,080 resolution makes everything razor sharp as well, and its two-point touchscreen is both accurate and responsive.

Unfortunately, the VSD220’s underlying processing power isn’t half so snappy. It’s powered by a dual-core Texas Instruments OMAP4430 processor running at 1GHz, and its measly 1GB of RAM makes it noticeably slower than both budget PCs and top-of-the-range smartphones. Its sluggishness was confirmed when the SunSpider Javascript benchmark returned a result of 2,429 ms, which, when compared to the Samsung Galaxy S3’s score of 1,771 ms, leaves it even slower than a high-end smartphone. Unfortunately, it wasn’t compatible with Quadrant, but it managed a pitiful 5.4fps in our GLBench Egypt HD benchmark test, making it equally ill-suited to the playing of 3D games.

Incompatibility is a big problem elsewhere in the Google Play Store, too. Apps like TuneIn, Dropbox, BBC Media Player, Firefox, and Evernote all worked fine, but more popular apps such as Facebook, Netflix, Twitter, Instagram, Mighty Text and Shazam are all incompatible. Even at this price, we expected more from the VSD220 and it severely limits its potential as a useful all-in-one PC, especially as it only comes with 8GB of storage.

The VSD220 is a decent but not spectacular touchscreen PC display. You’ll need to use the Micro HDMI cable included in the box to connect it to a PC. Other connections include the mains connector, a Gigabit Ethernet port and a MicroSD port.

Viewsonic VSD 220 Smart Display

It’s a very neat package overall. The screen measures just 20mm deep, so it won’t take up much room on your desk. You can also adjust the angle of the flip-out stand, which is more than can be said for the Microsoft Surface RT. Unlike other monitors and all-in-one PCs, the rest of its design leaves a lot to be desired. Its hard, sharp edges and slim glossy bezel don’t suggest high-end style, and its reflective display will cause havoc with bright overhead lights.

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Viewsonic VSD220 Scores 5.0 out of 10 based on 2 reviews

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