Motorola Xyboard 10.1 Teardown: Overpriced, soon to be outdated

The Motorola Xyboard 10.1's excellent build quality and decent hardware are overshadowed by its high price and quad-core tablet competitors.

Cracking Open: Motorola Xyboard 10.1 Bill Detwiler shows you what's inside the Motorola Xyboard 10.1 Android tablet and explains why prospective buyers might want to wait a few months before picking one up.

A year ago, Motorola combined high-end hardware with Android Honeycomb to create the Xoom--a solid, but slightly-overpriced, tablet. In December 2011, the company launched the Xyboard--a thinner, lighter, more powerful Android tablet, which also has 4G connectivity.

In this week's episode of Cracking Open, I show you what's inside the Motorola Xyboard 10.1 and explain why prospective buyers might want to wait a few months before picking one up.

Our Xyboard 10.1 has a 1.2GHz Texas Instruments OMAP processor, 1GB of DDR2 SDRAM, 16GB flash storage, a 10.1" IPS TFT active matrix LCD (1280 x 800), 802.11 b/g/n WLAN and Bluetooth 2.1 EDR, 1.3MP front-facing camera and 5MP rear-facing camera. The Xyboard 10.1 measures 6.8" (H) x 9.9" (W) x 0.4" (D). It weighs 1.3 pounds.

Full teardown gallery: Cracking Open the Motorola Xyboard 10.1

Cracking Open observations

  • Excellent build-quality: As with the Xoom and Droid Razr, Motorola's experience building high-quality devices comes through in the Xyboard. The tablet feels sturdy in your hands, has an efficient, clean interior, and solid construction.
  • Built-in 4G: Unlike the Xoom, which used a discreet 4G card, the Xyboard's 4G chips are soldered directly to the motherboard.
  • Processor switch: Instead of going with Nvidia's latest Tegra processor, Motorola used a Texas Instrument OMAP processor in the Xyboard.
  • Evolutionary, not revolutionary: For all intents and purposes, the Xyboard is an upgraded Xoom. The Xyboard has a faster processor, better display, and comes in a 64GB model, but both have a similar internal design, come with Android Honeycomb, and have a premium price tag. If Motorola had released the Xyboard six months ago, I wouldn't be knocking the Xyboard so hard. But with the iPad 3 just around the corner and Asus' quad-core Transformer Prime already on the market, the Xyboard's hardware will soon be, if it isn't already, outdated.
  • Overpriced: And when you consider the device's high price, $699 for a 16GB model without a 4G contract, I think consumers should wait to see what Apple and other tablet makers release in the coming months before buying a Xyboard.

Internal hardware

Our Xyboard 10.1 test machine has the following hardware:

  • 1.2GHz dual-core Texas Instruments OMAP processor
  • 1GB DDR2 SDRAM
  • 16GB flash storage
  • 10.1" IPS TFT active matrix display (1280 x 800)
  • 5MP rear-facing camera
  • 1.3MP front-facing camera
  • 3.7V, 7,000 mAh Li-Ion battery
  • IR Transmitter
  • Samsung K3PE7E700M-XGC1 4Gb LPDDR2 RAM
  • Maxim MAXQ610 16-Bit Microcontroller with Infrared Module
  • Qualcomm RTR8600 multi-band/mode RF transceiver for LTE bands
  • TriQuint TQM7M5013 Quad-Band GSM / GPRS / EDGE-Linear Power Amplifier Module
  • Avago A2FI140 048345
  • Unknown Motorola IC? (MOT 14621 011-R 1F746-2)
  • Unknown IC (77701-2 72827.1 1137 MX)