When it comes to buying a tablet, an iPad is usually the way to go, but there are other options out there if you’re looking for an Android experience or want to save a little money. The Notepad K10 from Dragon Touch is a more budget-friendly alternative which features a 10.1-inch display and 32GB storage.
The Notepad K10 features a plastic and metal build, with the majority being plastic. I was quite surprised to see that the device featured a metal backplate but the rest of the device is plastic, including the display – I would’ve personally found it nicer to have a glass display and a plastic back but this is what I would expect to see on a budget-focused tablet. The tablet has a good weight to it, it’s not too lightweight to the point where it feels cheap but it doesn’t feel too heavy to carry around or hold when in use weighing in at just under 530 grams.
The front of the tablet is home to the 10.1-inch display as well as a front facing camera. Although the display is a plastic surface, which does mean that it’ll it be more prone to scratches, it’ll be able to better withstand accidental drops and work well as a tablet for children who may be less gentle with a tablet.
Looking around the device, the volume rockers and sleep/wake button are on the right-hand side, alongside a headphone jack and reset button. There’s a micro-USB charging port on the top, which I would’ve like to have been USB Type-C, alongside a micro-HDMI port, so you could plug the tablet into a TV if needed or desired.
Flipping over the tablet, the back is home to the rear-facing camera and flash, rear-facing speakers and microSD card slot – allowing you to add an extra 128GB storage to the tablet, which makes it great for storing media for a holiday or long car journey.
Overall, the design of the tablet is okay, it’s nothing crazy, but it gets the job done. As far as the build quality goes, the buttons and surfaces feel good, but the tablet build itself does have some flex to it which is… not so good.
The Notepad K10 has a 10.1-inch display with a resolution of 1280×800, making it slightly higher than 720p but not full HD resolution, resulting in a pixel density of 160ppi. The lower resolution, in comparison to the display resolutions of some of the smartphones I have recently reviewed, does mean that text and graphics can look a little soft and diffused.
The lower resolution also means that interface elements within apps can also take up quite a bit of screen real estate. This isn’t much of a problem if you’re watching video content but if you’re doing some reading in the browser, for example, quite a lot of the screen is taken up by the user interface.
The display is an LCD panel which offers decent brightness and saturation. Looking at photos and watching videos is pleasant – and speaking of watching videos, you’re able to stream videos at 720p resolution in the YouTube app.
The Notepad K10 ships with Android 9.0 but unfortunately cannot be updated any further, resulting in the tablet running a version of Android that is two major versions behind – Android 11 is the latest version at the time of this review.
I was able to perform one software update which installed a security update from October 2019, but this is an issue that can arise with budget Android devices – manufacturers just don’t provide software updates, which is an unfortunate shame.
A good aspect of the software experience on the tablet is that it includes no bloat whatsoever and offers a stock Android experience which helps ensure that the experience of using the device is smooth and efficient.
The Notepad K10 has a modest spec sheet, so don’t get it expecting blazing performance. The tablet performs well for content consumption such as streaming videos, browsing social media and web browsing but it may struggle when trying to do more demanding tasks such as gaming – especially on 3D titles.
Apps load fairly quickly and the experience of switching through apps with multitasking is responsive. I was able to successfully play some 2D games such as Among Us and make use of Steam Game Streaming which worked fairly well with only a couple of moments of lag – so if you still want to game, game streaming could be an option.
The tablet is powered by an ARM Cortex A53 processor and features 2GB RAM. If you’re interested in benchmarks the device scored, on Geekbench, 90 points on the single-core benchmark and 348 points on the multi-core benchmark. Those are certainly not impressive numbers, but if you need a tablet for basic needs, the K10 will be able to handle the basics.
The tablet supports AC Wi-Fi as well as Bluetooth 4 connectivity for connecting to a wireless speaker or headphones, for example, which you’ll probably want to do as the speakers are incredibly tinny and do not sound that great.
I can see cameras on tablets being used more for video calls than photography itself, but the cameras on the Notepad K10 are a bit of a mixed bag. The rear-facing 8-megapixel camera is okay for a quick photo or scanning a document, which is paired alongside a rear-facing flash for poorly lit situations.
The front-facing selfie camera, on the other hand, is pretty terrible. The camera has a 2-megapixel resolution and is incredibly soft and results in a poor-quality image. For a quick video call to a family member or a friend, it’s not the end of the world, but I would’ve expected better for a tablet in 2020.
The colour accuracy across both of the camera is also not that great, with images looking washed out and desaturated. If you need to record a video using the cameras, the rear will record at 720p and the front at 480p.
The Notepad K10 sports a 5000mAH battery which will be able to provide up to 6 hours of battery life. This will, of course, vary depending on your usage and the apps you use. When it comes to charging the tablet, this is done via the micro-USB port on the tablet, there is a cable and power brick included within the box.
If you’re looking for a powerhouse of a tablet, the Notepad K10 certainly isn’t one, but I do think it still has its place. I think it’s a great option for children or grandparents who want a tablet that is not overly expensive that can still allow the basics of web browsing, social media and content consumption such as streaming video on YouTube.
In comparison to something such as a Kindle Fire, this does have the advantage of having Google services installed so the tablet could be a nice home automation panel as well, but if you are looking for something more powerful that offers a good experience in areas such as the cameras, speakers and software update longevity – it may be worth saving up that little extra for the base model iPad.
The Dragon Touch Notepad K10 Android tablet is available to purchase on Amazon.
Dragon Touch Notepad K10Dragon Touch Notepad K10
- Suitable for basic tasks
- Affordable alternative to an iPad
- Google Play services included
- Poor update support
- Low resolution display
- Speakers sound terrible