Walmart is reportedly working on a budget-friendly tablet

Polycount

TS Evangelist
Staff member

Walmart has been pushing to make a name for itself in the electronic gadget market as of late, but with mixed results. Its "Overpowered" line of gaming desktops and laptops have been criticized heavily for their poor components, mediocre build quality, and questionable overall value.

It seems the company has learned its lesson, to a degree. Instead of trying to make mid to high-end machines with exorbitant price tags, Walmart is now working on a budget and child-friendly tablet, Bloomberg reports.

The device, which is unnamed as of writing, will be entering the market at a less-than-ideal time. As Bloomberg notes, the tablet industry has been on the decline for quite a while, and things don't appear to be changing anytime soon.

However, perhaps a relatively inexpensive tablet from a well-known brand could be just the revitalization the market needs - only time will tell.

At any rate, we don't have much in the way of details regarding Walmart's upcoming device. Its specs, design, release date, and precise cost are all still unknown, but we do know that it will likely run Android Pie.

Apparently, tablets aren't the only electronics Walmart will be working on in 2019. Bloomberg says that gadgets and home goods will be a "focus" this year, though it's unclear what that might entail. Maybe we'll see Walmart release a low-cost smartphone of its own.

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trparky

TS Evangelist
Walmart is not exactly a company that I have any confidence in to get this tablet right in any way. The words "Walmart" and "quality" are two words that should never be uttered in the same sentence unless of course you add the word "crap" before the word "quality".

Even a freakin' broom bought at Walmart is a cheap piece of crap that falls apart in no time. Now you want me to buy a tablet from them? What will it have as part of it? A feature that if I look at it cross-eyed it will break and catch on fire?
 

paul1122

TS Rookie
Walmart is not exactly a company that I have any confidence in to get this tablet right in any way. The words "Walmart" and "quality" are two words that should never be uttered in the same sentence unless of course you add the word "crap" before the word "quality".

Even a freakin' broom bought at Walmart is a cheap piece of crap that falls apart in no time. Now you want me to buy a tablet from them? What will it have as part of it? A feature that if I look at it cross-eyed it will break and catch on fire?

From what I've seen, if it does catch on fire, even after 2 years, just bring it back like parents do with bikes at the end of the summer and get store credit, lol :p
 
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QuantumPhysics

TS Evangelist
Tablets in general are dirt cheap now.

You can buy them from Walgreens for Godsakes.

For the most part, most other companies gave up on their Tablets while Apple continued to refine the iPad quietly.
 
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psycros

TS Evangelist
If Walmart is planning to sell its own tablets then I suspect there are two probable reasons:

1. Its a trial balloon for a possible line of house brand electronics like Sears used to have, just as the article hints. Walmart could pre-load spyware to track your online behavior like literally EVERY company does now so they can sell out your privacy to one and all. While most Americans think of Walmart as a fairly trustworthy company that tends to be above that sort of sleaze, the pressure to find new revenue streams is enormous.

2. Its the above but also the start of a campaign to push Walmart's own streaming service. Walmart owns Vudu, which happens to be #3 in pay-per-view streaming behind Apple and Amazon. It also has free programming with ads. Walmart has been trying to figure out how to fight back against Amazon on all fronts for years. Copying Amazon's digital walled garden might be the answer, or at least part of the answer. Walmart's investment in Straight Talk has proven it can pull off this sort of thing as long as it delivers max value. If Sam's little chain can get its foot in the door via a cheap tablet, smart TV or phone then maybe it can start showing a you lot of ads for all that physical Walmart merchandise too..customized by your browsing interests, of course. While most Walmart locations carry only a small cross-section of the company's massive inventory almost every Walmart can be a pick-up location for orders from their huge catalog. That's a significant advantage for a lot of people, particularly those who are sick of their Amazon packages being stolen by their neighbors. With average prices on Amazon steadily rising over the past two years Walmart may be in a position to win back some business from their biggest rival next to Target. Amazon's slow but steady incursion into brick-and-mortar retail is undoubtedly a factor as well.

I could be totally wrong about all of this, of course..companies do things for the oddest reasons. A high-value Walmart tablet might be nothing more than a way to get customers in the door.
 

yRaz

Nigerian Prince
I ha e learned my lesson from buying cheap electronics. They're buggy and slow and just not worth the frustration. Even basic tasks like checking email is a chore. I've finally started putting up the extra cash for something that is powerful enough to have a user experience. For example, you load a webpage and 30seconds later the ads load and you accidentally tap one as you're swiping. Then you have to wait for the ad to load, hit the back button and wait for the page and all the previous ads to load.

The waiting, the endless waiting! Even new budget electronics are terrible at this. I I went into it figuring, "how bad can this stuff be?"
 
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mcborge

TS Guru
Tesco's in the uk made a tablet called the Hudle, it was pretty decent for the price then for some reason they pulled the plug on it despite it selling pretty well.
 

Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
I think the real issue for buyers is going to be the price, the features, and it being void of all that bloat ware. They could build a great following if they made it and any apps very reasonable. Sure, they are going to have their share of Ads on there but if they make it minimal they could have a real winner ..... If only the old man were still alive to supervise the development .......
 

mrtraver

TS Evangelist
I don't get this. The market is already flooded with cheap tablets. What's missing is an affordable, quality tablet with decent specs, like the old Nexus 7. I've been looking for a tablet to replace my $200 Nexus 7 and there is nothing comparable out there in that price range. (Please send links if I missed something!) It is a sad day for Android tablets when an iPad Mini is the best choice for a tablet with decent speed and power.
 

EClyde

TS Evangelist
Walmart is not exactly a company that I have any confidence in to get this tablet right in any way. The words "Walmart" and "quality" are two words that should never be uttered in the same sentence unless of course you add the word "crap" before the word "quality".

Even a freakin' broom bought at Walmart is a cheap piece of crap that falls apart in no time. Now you want me to buy a tablet from them? What will it have as part of it? A feature that if I look at it cross-eyed it will break and catch on fire?
take some anger pills
 

petert

TS Evangelist
Reminds me of Tesco's Hudl tablet. Tesco is a chain here in UK ... I guess the main target are the parents and grannies who don't know too much about technology but want to make a gift to a kid without having to spend too much. The tablet would be the cheapest in Tesco's offering. As far as I know, it is not sold anymore but I haven't been to a large Tesco in years.
 

petert

TS Evangelist
I don't get this. The market is already flooded with cheap tablets. What's missing is an affordable, quality tablet with decent specs, like the old Nexus 7. I've been looking for a tablet to replace my $200 Nexus 7 and there is nothing comparable out there in that price range. (Please send links if I missed something!) It is a sad day for Android tablets when an iPad Mini is the best choice for a tablet with decent speed and power.
I had to replace my aging Nexus 7 (2nd gen) last year. Still going strong, battery life was decent - but I was craving for the split screen functionality not available in Marshmallow. There are no decent replacements tbh, I was having nvidia's tablet in mind for some time, but it was already obsolete, the updates weren't flowing and the battery life was crap. Not to mention it was bulky. So I settled for a Huawei mediapad m8 .... big mistake; Looking back, I think I should have gone for xiaomi mi max 3. Since I was changing tablets, I also wanted cellphone capabilities
Main issue with Huawei (and I suspect xiaomi as well) is the interface - they kinda went for an apple like or as close as they could get without being sued. The amount of crapware you get with it is also an issue. And you have several dodgy apps like the hicare one from huawei which lets you know outright that they are collecting your data and send it to huawei. I hate the swift keyboard it came with - and it also gets triggered due to a faulty design - your palms are close to the tablet corners which mean that it will insert characters randomly. The solution is to raise your palms in an awkward and strenuous position. I damn miss my nexus 7, was made with love. And I 100% agree with you - Ipad mini is a better replacement for nexus 7 than huawei at least!
 
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mrtraver

TS Evangelist
Thanks for your story! I had looked at that Huawei. Samsungs and Sonys seem to be rated higher but are overpriced. With phones getting bigger and bigger (another trend I don't like) I kinda doubt we will ever see the likes of the Nexus 7 again. Not with that relative power in that price range.

I still have my 2nd gen Nexus 7, but the touch screen stopped responding consistently. I can use it for media, but gaming is out.

I then got the nvidia Shield K1. Battery life always sucked, but got worse after a nasty drop that cracked the screen in several places. I have a glass screen protector now so I don't slice my fingers, but even when plugged in the games I like drain the battery faster than it charges.