Last year when I reviewed a £79 Linx 7 tablet I was really impressed with how well Windows worked on such a cheap device and I had a lot of feedback from readers asking questions about the device. As Windows 10 gets closer to final release I thought I would see how well Windows 10 works on the cheap tablet.
The first thing I thought may be an issues is that Linx 7 uses a compressed image of Windows 8.1 designed to reduce the space taken by the device (which has 32GB of storage). When the Windows 10 Insider Program was announced Microsoft said that compressed images (WIMboot) installations wouldn’t be supported, however this doesn’t seem to be a problem with the Linx 7 and Windows 10 build 10130.
I downloaded the 32bit ISO of Windows 10 build 10130 to the Linx 7 and then mounted the ISO file and ran the setup.exe. I let the installer do an in-place upgrade and in about 30 minutes Windows 10 was up and running. After the install completed Windows Update downloaded the video drivers and Windows 10 updates, the Windows Store app also downloaded the Windows 10 apps like music, videos and Mail.
So in just over an hour with minimal intervention the tablet is working very well. In fact Windows 10 fixes one of the main issues I had with the Linx 7 which is the placement of the hardware Windows button, on this device it is up on the top bezel which I really dislike. On a tablet with a Windows key just below the screen it is easy to tap it without moving your hands from the holding the tablet and having the button up on the top is a real pain but with Windows 10 the Windows key is ever present on screen making it easy to select.
Overall the tablet works as fast, maybe a little faster that it did with Windows 8.1. Windows 10 works very well on a small tablet, the only think I really miss is the ability to swipe up from the bottom to bring up the all apps list.
For £59 (from Amazon) you get a 7 inch Windows 8.1 tablet which can be upgraded to Windows 10 for free (either via Windows Insiders or waiting until July 29th for the RTM version) and has MicroSD, MicroUSB and MicroHDMI for expansion needs.