Bought a 2nd one. Both working great. 10-19-16
By John Pfeiffer on September 23, 2016
Color: Dark Gray Size: 16GB eMMC
Nice package design (case and control locations). Feels a little heavy, just over a pound, and I'm thinking that the battery is probably most of the weight, and battery life is somewhat important in a usable tablet. I've had Windows Tabs that have gotten between 2-6 hours in runtime (even some Fujitsu's going back to 2001). I expect that the Zenpad, being driven by the new Mediatek chipset should exceed the best Windows Tabs numbers, but it's mostly the screens that eat up the juice. I've only used this for a few days, but used it heavily. So far I have had no screen issues, but am on manual for brightness, and change it as needed for lighting conditions. I have also disabled most of the stock Asus apps, and uninstalled the apps that actually can be uninstalled. BTW, the bootloader is locked on this Marshmallow/6.0 version, so if you're thinking about rooting, you may want to research other tablets. I can't comment on the cameras as I use my phone or a real camera for photos. I would not expect an under $200 tablet camera to equal a real or iphone/Samsung phone camera. The 2gb of ram is a huge plus. I just returned a generic tablet that was almost half the price of the Asus, that claimed 4gb ram, 4gb internal mem plus 60gb of internal SD, but was junk with less than 1gb internal and lots if other fake specs. Having 2gb of REAL ram is a benefit, although only 1gb is free the majority of the time. For $179, I would expect at least a 2gb/32gb combo, but 16gb will do if you aren't expecting the world for under $200. For some reason, tablet manufacturers haven't caught up with how current users use their tablets and why their storage technology and specs should move past 2010. Using memory cost as a reason to short users on specs has no basis as ram/rom costs are almost negligible nowadays. Perhaps Android has issues with accessing larger mem numbers? Overall, the case design is nice, possibly one of the least block-looking tablets I've used. Two of the family have Acer One 10 tablets, and they're very basic in styling. I would have purchased one of those, but the limiting factor was the 1gb of ram. So far, those have working very well, but recently have gone up in price (now between $139-$169). I had picked up the pair at BB locally for $109 each making them a good deal. Overall, the Asus does very well-excellent at most tasks and pulled about 33,000 on Antutu benchmark. No, that's not exactly cranking, but it's all about battery life. Some generic Tabs pull 50,000+, but you'll be moaning about battery life and heat if you buy one of those. The only real gripe I have about this Tab is that occasionally the wifi will bog (even at full strength 6 meters from the router). It may be some offending app sucking bandwidth and is prevalent mostly during my use of Play, so I suggest using Opera Max to control your apps background, wifi, and radio (cell) usage. Max will show what apps are sucking data. As an aside, I would NOT recommend using Operas browsers, especially Opera-mini, which though it "saves data" with inflated/deflated numbers, is almost completely useless and frustrating to use. Anyway, back to the main point: Asus Zenpad Z300M - nice package, screen looks great for it's size, fairly quick response, long boot up for an Android box, but not terrible, good screen response except occasionally when using Play, where the app screen does not always respond to touch. Everything else that I have installed runs great. I left it on last night at 95% battery with screen in saver mode (off), and this morning it was at 84%. Not bad for standby. Also, the Zenpad has a power saver app. Use it. I mentioned earlier that the Zenpad seemed a little heavy. Well, keep in mind that adding a cover will almost double it's weight to over 2 lbs.
09/26/16 update: Still working great. Installed some fairly large apps. Big games and productivity apps run fine. Transferred files to and from my PC's via usb cable a few times -no recognition issues. In comparison, one of my kids 2 week old Acer One 10 tabs is already showing screen issues and the case loosened up. An older one, maybe a month old, is still solid. I'm hoping that the Zenpad does better with durability, but it probably depends more on which assembler snapped together on the line. Mine is pretty solid. Advice: spend the bucks on a 128gb microsd. Many apps will automatically put their large files on the external sd and keep that precious internal ram freed up. Samsung is a good place to start. I've had too many Sandisks bite dirt over the last 2 years. I currently have over 2 dozen various sized EVO versions that have been super-stable. Trying a Patriot 128 tonight just to see if they've gotten more stable. Crossing my fingers in hope of not getting a fake (my last Sandisk 64gb was).
09/28/2016: Added the 128gb Samsung card, works great and allows me to keep several gig free in the internal memory. Raised the rating to 5 stars. It sped up cold boot by using the startup tool to turn off most apps at startup. It helped a bit. Asus has built a very good tablet. I just hope that it stays stable and doesn't lemon within the 30 day Prime warranty period. For those with dark screen issues, have you turned off auto-brightness and made sure blue filter is off? Otherwise, yes, the screen could look very dark.
10-14-16: Took my sons "other brand" tablet back (had updated this review before but it wasn't posted - not allowed to mention other brands quality?). Its internal sd went into "read only" mode and he couldn't save anything including settings. So I ordered another Z300M and he couldn't stop going on about how much better it was than his "recA" (read that backwards) - especially after disabling some very minor bloatware. So, that would be two 5 stars on the tablet at this point. I guess I know what the other kids are getting if their generic tabs die...
Final thoughts (for the monent): Actually, some of the Asus software is quite good. Try all the apps they provide before just toasting or disabling them. You might be surprised. I like the startup app and the "boost" for cache cleanup, plus some of the productivity apps are decent (and no ads). Remember to restart your tab every few days to clear out the internal 2Gb ram cache (as opposed to the 16Gb of internal sdcard memory). It makes a difference in day to day performance.
com: Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 - 10.1" WXGA Tablet (Qualcomm 1.3GHz Processor, 1 GB RAM, 16 GB SSD, Android 5.1 Lollipop) ZA0H0022US: Computers & Accessories
Bought a 2nd one. Both working great. 10-19-16