[Video] How a dirt-chip tablet is made and tested (it’s not what you expect)

by: Chris SmithJune 16, 2012
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The tablet business is still dominated by Apple, with Android device makers still having a hard time coming up with an iPad rival that would woo the crowds. Google’s Andy Rubin and Samsung executives independently admitted that their progress in the tablet business is not where they’d like it to be, and while we expect the two companies to launch more competitive tablets in the future, let’s not forget the fact that there’s another kind of Android tablet out there, low- to mid-ranged devices that are made by a variety of OEMs, Amazon included.

Today, we have a video for you that shows us how that ultra-affordable $55 Boxchip A13 7-inch tablet is made and tested in a factory in Shenzen, China. The 7-minute video reveals that we’re not looking at the contained environment we would have imagined. The workers don’t wear uniforms and protective gears and you won’t see anywhere the cleanliness and care you’d expect to see in such factories. There aren’t any robots helping out with product making, and it’s probably safe to say that only affordable manual labor is used to build it.

Then again, the Boxchip A13 tablet is very cheap at $55 (now rumored to cost $49), so you can’t be too pretentious about the way your tablet is made should you decide to pick up one of these devices.

In case you were wondering, the tablet factory above, produces around 4,000 units each day, or 120,000 units a month, which means there are plenty of buyers for cheap Android tablets. And, as long as they work accordingly – and you can see that testing goes on during manufacturing – they’ll probably be appreciated by Android tablet buyers that don’t have a lot of wiggle room to accommodate more expensive purchases when it comes to their budgets.

Here’s what the Boxchip A13 tablet has to offer for that $55:

  • 7-inch touchscreen display with 800 x 480 resolution
  • 1.2GHz ARM Cortex A8 processor
  • 512MB of RAM
  • 4GB storage
  • microSD support
  • 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi
  • 3G dongle support
  • 0.3-megapixel front-facing camera
  • USB support
  • 2,000mAh battery
  • Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich

Would you buy a Boxchip A13 tablet now that you know how it’s made?

  • Railin

    Watched the video and trying to understand what was supposed to be so horrible? A bunch of young chinese women each adding a little chip or detail to the tablet, looks clean enough, where’s the horror?? I assume they aren’t paid enough, but that’s the living standard in their country, you can’t compare salaries only and not the expenses. Also, what they are doing is low skill manual labor, there is no reason to expect high pay. Plenty of people here are underpaid for the living standards in Canada too, even those that do higher skill level work, therefore I find it hard to worry about those underpaid but having much cheaper expenses in their countries.
    On another note, where can I buy this tablet?

  • Sebastien

    Nobody said its horrible but this last line : Would you buy a Boxchip A13 tablet now that you know how it’s made? … Suggest that something is not right about it , i dont see whats wrong either … Why would they need big machine if it can be done this way .. Looks clean , with the tool they have they manage to do the job pretty quickly … I would probably buy one …

  • Worse article ever. How do you think EVERY other piece of electronic device is made? This is real life not the movies or the tv commercials you see on the tube. Wake up.

  • for $55 i would most likely buy it considering it has android 4.0 and a 1.2GHZ processor. Seems like a better deal than other companies have to offer.

  • Terrence Greene

    Just where in the world is this heavenly all female workshop… If i was in the video i would be the creepy guy in the back with the ear to ear grin…

  • Techpm

    What a crap environment. Open soldering without fume extraction? The “ventilation” is a small fan recycled from a cooler? No masks or gloves?

    And how the hell do they keep hairs out of those tablets?

  • Hillboy

    This is the era of globalization where open market is widely available. I doubt apple is paying way low when their tablets/Ipad built in foxconn/China. This what we called profit hungry enterprise. That’s the advantage of having a small player or OEM brands. Why force me to pay hundred of dollars to a fatty brands where i can get it less than a hundred with the same experience and functionality.

  • Techie

    I have no problem buying one of these!