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There are many reasons to love Alcatel's latest 2-in-1 Windows tablet, the Plus 10, but here are the five features that thrilled us the most.
1. The magnetic keyboard
The reason the Plus 10 is called a 2-in-1 Windows tablet is because it obviously runs on the latest Windows OS (Windows 10), but also because it comes with a detachable keyboard that turns it into a mini-laptop. So you can choose to use it as a regular 10.1-inch touchscreen tablet, or flip it horizontally and attach it to the keyboard, and voila! You've got a laptop (or notebook) to type on, with the tablet acting as the screen. There's even a little trackpad on the keyboard!
What this means is that you can work easily and smoothly on Word, Excel, Powerpoint or other Microsoft applications when you're away from your desk. No more cursing your tablet when it takes you longer to type a single thing in a Excel cell than it does to type a full mail on your PC!
What we also love is that the keyboard 'dock' cradles the tablet using magnets, with none of the hassle of Bluetooth. Because there's no hinge keeping the screen and the keyboard together, though, when you close the keyboard onto the screen, you probably don't want to carry it around in a bag in case they come apart.
2. You can use it as a Wi-Fi Hotspot
An unusual but very positive addition we discovered was that the keyboard carries a SIM card slot. This means you can insert a Vodacom data SIM and use the Plus 10 as a Wi-Fi hotspot for up to 15 other devices, which is great when you're away with no Wi-Fi. And the even better news is that the tablet connects to Vodacom's super-fast 4G/LTE network, too. Quite simply, you don't really want to buy a mobile device that can't. It is 2017, after all.
Another very handy feature of the keyboard dock is that it offers a full-size USB, something you don't usually get on tablets, so you can plug it into your printer or charge your phone with it.
3. The great battery life
Speaking of charging, the keyboard has its own battery (of 2580 mAh), which also charges the tablet when they're docked. This means the Plus 10, in effect, has two batteries. But since the tablet's packing a 5830 mAh battery of its own, it will be a while before you need to charge it. The screen resolution also keeps battery usage to a minimum - it's bright enough to be seen, but doesn't use too much juice.
4. The storage capacity
The Plus 10 has 32GB of on-board storage. We know what you're thinking - is that enough for Windows 10? Well, considering that the absolute minimum amount of space you'd need just to run the OS itself is 16GB, the answer to your question is probably 'no, there's not a lot of spare storage space'. But with the tablet's microSD slot, Bob's your uncle. We recommend boosting the storage space to the full 64GB so you never have to cut back on the Windows apps or features you know and love.
You can buy the Alcatel Plus 10 on Vodacom Online for the incredible Prepaid price of R4 779, or you can purchase it on a 24-month Data Top-Up Price Plan, which starts at R279 per month and includes 1GB of data per month, plus 1GB of additional data to use between midnight and 5am, and a R10 000 online education voucher.
Note that prices were correct at time of publishing in February 2017 and are subject to change without notice.