Best Buy’s Secret RK3288 iPad Mini Clone

Comment here from Dan EE:

One of the cheap Chinese clones is the Best Buy Insignia Flex Elite 7.85″ that actual looks promising. It is $150 and has A/B/G/N, 2048×1536 display. I picked one up to try it out. It has the Rockchip RK3288 processor. WiFi is better than my N7. It has a Broadcom WiFi/BT combo chip. The Asus Z580C doesn’t have A band and that is a show stopper for me. The local coffee shop and has both A and G. The G band is so crowded and slow, but the A band is not crowded at all.

I got 38005 on AnTuTu the first time I ran it before Google had time to install all the apps I don’t want. After all the Google installs and updates, it consistently gets ~36,380. The biggest thing that impressed me was the AnTuTu V3.0 video test score was 785. Handled all the AVC/HEVC in 2K and 4K. Screen looks great. The bad thing is the SW like all these clones. It runs 5.0.1 but the screen auto brightness only has one setting. It doesn’t pay attention to the brightness setting in auto. It won’t turn on from the off state if charging. You can tell they took the Nexus 7 as the baseline for the SW. The regulatory information under “about tablet” has the Nexus 9 model 0P82100 page. Whoops! It also lives up to it’s name and has a lot of flex. It could use metal frame on the edge. Other than that the HW is good. RockChip released a new 5.1 SDK to the manufacturers at the end of May. It may be a new firmware release come soon and will clear up most of the problems. Having Best Buy as the marketer may increase the pressure to get the SW right.

I was in four Best Buy stores this week. None of them had this.

InsigniaFlexRK3288BestBuy00

InsigniaFlexRK3288BestBuy02b

Rockchip 3288 at 1.8GHz, 7.85-inch IPS Retina-class screen at 2048 x 1536, 2GBs of RAM, 16GBs of internal storage, microSD card slot, microUSB port, 2MP front and 5MP back cameras, 4,000mAh battery.

Is this why Hisense decided not to sell the Sero 8 Pro in the U.S.?

This is weirdly billed as “Special Buy: While Supplies Last.”

What supplies?! Four Best Buy stores — none had it!

And Insignia is Best Buy’s house brand!

This is just another example of Best Buy’s incompetency. Their tablet displays have been going to hell, not all stores have all models of tablets, and no one seems to keep track of anything. And what’s our alternative in NYC? DataVision? Not for this tablet! Buying from Amazon? I won’t buy without trying in person.

Anyway, a “secret” tablet. Way to go there, Best Buy.

And the kicker: This would be a triage tablet for me. And it’s likely I’d buy this over the Asus ZenPad S 8.0 — while waiting for the “Plus/Pro” model of it to go on sale.

Thanks to Dan EE for the tip!

Additional:

Insignia™ – Flex Elite – 7.85″ – 16GB – White/Silver

2 Comments

Filed under iPad Mini Clones

2 responses to “Best Buy’s Secret RK3288 iPad Mini Clone

  1. Dan EE

    Is is weird, but you have to use the “store picup” -> “closest stores” radio button to find out if they have it your store. It won’t show with the “in stock” button. Then you will need to go bug someone clueless “Professional Sales Associate” to look under all the cabinets.
    I had a day to play with it and get some more info. I have verified it does have AC as well as A. The Broadcom BCM4350 should also support FM radio (no app with it). Besides the screen brightness issue, there is a bad bug with the External SDcard. Only the stock file app and gallery app can read from the external SDcard. I realize that with Kit Kat on up, you had to rooted to write to external cards, however apps with the READ_EXTERNAL_STORAGE set in the manifest should be able to read from the external SDcards. Kodi and ES file explorer can’t read from it or a USB flash.
    I have gotten the RockChip tools to connect and have made a backup of the everything. I will probably root it and try some other ROMs loaded onto a SDcard. The only thing close to it are the Pipo P8 wifi and the iFive Air and they may not work. The last time I built a BSP kernel and a ROM was for GingerBread and that Linux box is long gone. It would take me more time than I have to build a kernel and an Android image to do it correctly. I am just too busy with work and caregiver to my elderly father. I left a review at Best Buy and also left them a Web Email listing all the problems. I haven’t heard anything back yet and the review didn’t post. I don’t think they like that I pointed out that the Regulatory Information under About Tablet is for a HTC, Nexus 9.

    • This looks like a problematic tablet they really don’t want to sell. They probably bought a batch, discovered the SD card problem, and decided not to buy more. I’ll check out the in-store stock tip and see what it reveals. Thanks.

      EDIT to add: OK, this is highly weird. ALL the Best Buy stores I’ve visited in the past week list it as Pick Up Today. I wonder if that’s a lie? I wouldn’t be at all surprised. And there’s two reviews there. One ass-kissy, another one blasting the battery life, claiming it loses 50% of charge overnight(!). I wonder if that guy has stuff updating overnight in apps? Thanks again for the tip.

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