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Lenovo IdeaPad A1 review

5.7/10 AVG.

Lenovo IdeaPad A1
Lenovo IdeaPad A1
Lenovo IdeaPad A1
Lenovo IdeaPad A1

Informr score
The Lenovo IdeaPad A1 currently has an Informr score of 5.7 out of 10. This score is based on our evaluation of 8 sources including reviews from users and the web's most trusted critics.

If you’re on the lookout for a full-featured Android tablet with decent specs and a low price tag, say hello to the Lenovo IdeaPad A1. Priced just a little bit more than Android-powered devices like the Amazon Kindle Fire and the Nook Color e-reader tablet, the Lenovo IdeaPad A1 offers a lot more features from the get go. And it also comes in a highly portable form factor, to boot.

The A1 tablet’s features include a 7-inch 1024x600 pixel resolution touchscreen display that’s held inside a casing that measures 12mm thick. It has dual cameras, with the main one having a 3-megapixel sensor on it, and comes with built-in sensors to detect motion and the amount of ambient light. Hardware-wise, it is fitted similarly to some entry-level Android smartphones released in the past two years, so it’s a sure bet that you are going to find plenty of useful, albeit dated, hardware functions.

And as for the software, the A1 tablet from Lenovo comes with Android 2.3 Gingerbread pre-installed. Unlike similarly-priced e-book readers that also have some form of the Android sofware installed on them, it offers unlimited access to the Google Play app store. That means you can download as much software as you like. That includes the ability to install all manner of official downloadable software, of course.

As feature-rich as the IdeaPad A1 is, however, it simply is not powerful enough with its weak processor and meager amount of RAM. It can still function quite well for most tasks such as Web browsing and document viewing on Android, but if you’re looking to purchase and play the latest 3D games or do some really complex computing, you need to look elsewhere for your tablet.

Need To Know: Lenovo IdeaPad A1

1. 7-inch form factor makes the Lenovo IdeaPad A1 tablet very portable and easy to use. (The Good)

2. Default operating system will let users enjoy plenty of official and third-party software support. (The Good)

3. Comes with relatively low amount of user available RAM. (The Bad)

4. No upgrade path to later versions of the Android software. (The Bad)

Operating system
1 GHz
Screen Size
3+ MP

What the Critics Are Saying...


The Lenovo IdeaPad A1′s $199 price point makes it an exceptional value. It has specifications that while not mind-blowing, get the job done.It’s not going to deliver a full-blown experience like Apple’s iPad, but it’s perfect for those that want to check their email, play a game, or surf the web on...

- Adam Mills, GottaBeMobile

If the Lenovo IdeaPad A1 were the only budget tablet on the planet, it would be easy to recommend it simply for its affordable $200 price tag. But it isn’t, and the fact that you can get the Kindle Fire for the exact same amount of cash will likely result in many buyers opting for name recognition o...

- Vince Font, TabletPCReview
Mobile Tech Review

The Lenovo IdeaPad A1 tablet is by no means a bad product; in fact it's a good alternative to those no-name tablets we see at Fry's and MicroCenter (Azpen, ChinaMart, even some Coby's aren't so hot). But the tablet's OS and CPU are already dated, and that means you'll get no future-proofing here. In...

- Lisa Gade, Mobile Tech Review
PC Magazine

If you're sold on the 7-inch form factor and want an affordable, capable tablet, the Kindle Fire or the Nook Tablet, which is now available in an 8GB version for $199, are better (and less-expensive) bets. Below-average performance, an older OS, and a subpar screen make the A1 a tough sell.

- Eugene Kim, PC Magazine

The Lenovo A1 is a mixed bag to say the least and frankly I’m not sure what to make of it.Just looking at the price and spec sheet would make me slap a Top Value award at the end of the review and get it over with. A brand name Android tablet with 16GB of storage, great battery life and GPS for €154...

- Nermin Hajdarbegovic, Fudzilla

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Screen Size

The Lenovo IdeaPad A1's screen size is 7 inches with x pixels resolution.

1 GHz

There is a OMAP 3622 1 GHz processor (CPU).


The tablet runs on proprietary operating system firmware.

3+ MP
You can take photos or capture video with the tablet's onboard 3+ MP camera. There is also a secondary front facing camera with VGA (640 x 480) resolution.
2/16 GB

Internal memory is 2/16 GB. An external, MicroSD, MicroSDHC (up to 32 GB) expansion slot is available for increased storage capacity.


The tablet is powered by a Lithium Polymer (Li-Pol), 3550 mAh battery. Lenovo's performance ratings are 7 hours Wi-Fi surfing.

IdeaPad A1 Specs

Release Date October 6, 2011
Regions Available USA
Operating System No

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Processor OMAP 3622 1 GHz
Internal Storage 2/16 GB
RAM 512 MB
Hearing Aid Compatible No
SAR Unknown
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included AC Charger, Data Cable, Manual, Standard Battery
Mobile / Cellular Data
No (Option available)
Wi-Fi Calling No
Voice over LTE (VoLTE) No
SIM card size
Dual SIM No
USB Micro-USB 2.0
USB OTG Support No
Infrared No
Bluetooth 2.1
Bluetooth Profiles A2DP
Bluetooth Audio Codecs SBC
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
Memory Expansion Slot Yes
Expansion Slot Info MicroSD, MicroSDHC (up to 32 GB)
Main Camera
Resolution / Aperture
3+ Megapixels
4x digital
Additional Main Camera Info
Effects, White balance, Exposure Value
Video Recording Formats
3GP / 3GPP, MPEG-4
Video Recording Parameters
VGA (640 x 480 pixels)
Front Camera
Resolution / Aperture
VGA (640 x 480)+ Megapixels
Additional Front Camera Info
Video Recording Parameters
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology LCD (TFT)
Colors 16.7 million
Resolution x pixels
Pixel density Unknown
Size 7 inches
Sensors Ambient Light, Motion / Accelerometer
Backlit Illumination Yes
Zoom / Magnification Yes
Screen Orientation Lock Yes
Multi-Touch Yes
Fingerprint-Resistant Coating No
Additional Display Features Capacitive touch screen
Power & Battery
Type Lithium Polymer (Li-Pol)
Battery Capacity 3550 mAh
Removable Battery No
Wireless Charging
Fast Charging No
Battery Charge Time 4 hours
Video Playback Time Up to 6 hours
Internet Use (Wi-Fi) Up to 7 hours
Internet Use (Cellular) Unknown
Standby Time Unknown
Mixed Usage
Physical Characteristics
Material Magnesium alloy
Colors Black, Pink, Blue, White
Dimensions [H x W x D] 12.5 x 19.5 x 1.2 cm (4.9 x 7.7 x 0.5 in)
Weight 400 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Unknown
Rugged design No
IP Rating No
Headset Jack 3.5mm
External Speakers Yes
Input / Navigation
Touchscreen Yes
Sleep / Wake Key No
Home Key Yes
Physical keyboard No
Text-to-Speech No
Screen Reader No
Keypad/Screen Lock Yes
External Volume Control Yes
Fingerprint Sensor No
Additional Comments
Related Links Manual (PDF)
Lenovo IdeaPad A1 Reviews
Where to buy Lenovo IdeaPad A1
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