New Toy: Lenovo A10-70 with Bluetooth Keyboard/Cover

NOTE: This started out as a blog about how much I like the IdeaPad A10-70. It became a rant, because the device bricked itself after less than two hours of use and spurred my first bad experience with Lenovo Support.

I just got a new tablet, Lenovo A10-70, with a Lenovo bluetooth Keyboard/cover!
While planning a new blog last weekend, I realized that I did not have access to an Android device.

My first thought was to buy the hackable ZaTab ZT2 from ZaReason. Unfortunately, the ZT2 is out of stock and, according to ZaReason Support, at end of life. Bummer!

On Monday, a colleague mentioned how much he enjoyed his Lenovo tablet. That got me thinking.  I had assumed that the IdeaPad devices all ran Windows. Man, was I wrong. I found the IdeaPad A10-70, with Android 4.2, bundled with a bluetooth keyboard and cover on sale! So, I ordered it.

Well, it arrived today and seemed to be pretty groovy. The few minutes I spend poking around Adroid just bolstered my dislike of iOS. After less than an hour of use, I was informed that a system update was available. So, I figured it would be a good idea to download it. Some minutes and five-hundred-plus megabytes later, I was informed that I could install the update now, or wait, or shut down the device.

I closed all the other apps, went back to the update screen and tapped “Install update now.” The cute little green Adroid guy with the blue spinning thingy in his torso appear beneath a slowly-moving  progress bar  and I waited. Some time later, it seems that the progress bar had stopped at around eighty percent. Knowing that time spent waiting is difficult to estimate, I started timing the lack of progress.  Then I waited. . . and waited . . . and waited.  After thirty four timed minutes, the progress bar had not moved.

So, I called the Lenovo Customer support and was told that I should have called tech support. On call number two, I reached a human, after some wading through the electronic switchboard and then on hold.  I explained the problem, and was told that this was a software problem, and I needed to call software support.

I called the number I was given for software support and found that this was actually Lenovo Premium support. They tried to sell me a support plan to fix my under-warranty device.  After refusing to give them my email address–I didn’t want them to create an account for me, as I was not going to pay to have an under warrant device repaired–the support person kept repeating that “since the problem was with a Windows update”, it was not covered under the warranty. As calmly as I could, I explained over and over that the device in question was running Android OS, so Windows update had nothing to do with my issue.

Eventually, I tired of hearing the same lines from the support script read to me in poor English and insisted to speak to a supervisor or customer service representative.  This evoked silence on the other end. I repeated my demand; again, silence. The third time I insisted, I told I would be put on hold, if that was OK.  OK, put me on hold: just get me some service! C’mon!

I waited on hold for a few minutes, then gave up and started over.  I called the Lenovo Support number, waded through the electronic switchboard and told the rep. that I had a lass-than-two-hour-old dead device.  He tried to walk me through powering the tablet off–never do this— and bringing it back up in debug mode to restore the OS. I powered-off the tablet, waited about ten seconds, then tried to power it on again. No joy! So, with the help of Lenovo (lack of) Support, I now have a really cool, well-designed brick!

We spent a short while trying over and over again to get the tablet to power up and finally I was present with two options:

  1. Return the device to Lenovo for repair or replacement.
  2. Contact the firm from which I purchased the device and ask for a replacement.

After this way-less-than-optimal experience with Lenovo Support, I chose option 2.

And the storm clouds lifted! The wonderful folks as SysteMax (in the guise of GlobalGovEd) immediately offered to replace the tablet, even asking if I would prefer a different model in exchange!

Once I get my replacement, I hope to provide a glowing review of this well-designed and executed Android tablet from Lenovo.  Until then, I’ll just play with my Asus laptop or my Kentucky Trade desktop workstation!

Happy Slacking!
Stu…

1 thought on “New Toy: Lenovo A10-70 with Bluetooth Keyboard/Cover”

  1. Sorry to hear about your bad experience. I stumbled upon your blog while searching for the bluetooth keyboard dock (cannot find it anywhere, I woul need one with a Finnish/Swedish layout). I too just bought the A10. Pretty nice device for 129 euros. Almost pure Android too, I am not particularly missing the TouchWiz UI of the Samsung device this Lenovo is now replacing.

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