Document last updated: 2014 - 10 - 25
check back for updates as I continue to write & finish
Welcome every one who has bought this tablet on close out
sale for $39.99, or $69.99, at Walmart, Ebay, or
I picked mine up for $39.99 right before the sale ended. I
sat on the fence a long time researching this tablet and
watching YouTube videos on it before I bought it. I
wanted the Yellow one but they jacked the price back up on
that one, so I was stuck buying the black one.
I already have a Nexus 7 2013, so I bought this as a curious
toy and just a new gadget to play with. Even though
its specs are significantly lower than the Nexus 7, and it
has quite a few major flaws, I find I actually like using
it. Its no Shelby Cobra like the Nexus 7 2013,
but its more like a Volkswagen Bus. It grows on
you. I am fascinated by it, simply for the price I
obtained it at...less than $50. The one laptop
per child dream... existing, and available for purchase at
your local Walmart (albeit - site to store).
I am working on this FAQ for this tablet. If you have
anything to contribute about using this tablet in real life
or otherwise, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and put
"Ematics Tablet" in your subject line. If for
nobody else, this page is a place for me to record
everything I have done to mod config the tablet, in case I
should ever have to reset it to a factory fresh image and
have to redo everything I've done before to get it back to
an optimal configuration.
The main problem you will run into with
this tabletis you will quickly run out
of installation space when installing apps you download from
the Google Play store. This is because, by default,
android downloads and installs apps to the first main
storage drive.... which on this unit, is a 1gb drive space
with only 230k space left free (fresh from the
factory). So you QUICKLY run out of storage
And yet, there is 3.9gb of empty storage space that it
"seems" like you can not touch or install to.
You can. The main purpose of this document is
going to be to tell you how to easily move all your apps out
of that 230k space, onto the 3.9gb of space, using an app
like "App 2 SD", and to configure the tablet (not so easy)
to automatically download and install new apps to this 3.9gb
space (or your external SD card) instead of onto the 1gb
maxed out system partition.
This document is a work in progress and many parts may be
incomplete, as I have not finished writing them. So my
instructions are not entirely complete or written for a
complete noobie to follow them. So bear with
me. I'll flush them out over time.
Screen snapshots of desktop of my unit are below, so you can
see some of the more useful apps I have installed, and games
installed just to test the GPU. Mostly I use my
tablets as news aggregate readers and to surf the web, as I
don't play games much anymore (having been a game
As you can see, I've got probably 3gb+ of installed games
and apps on the tablet, including Real Racing and League of
Legends (two honking huge games). All apps possible
have been moved to the internal simulated SDcard space:
THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE - TABLET SMELLS LIKE DIRT
The tablet is not actually dirty, this is
chemical out gassing from the rubber on the backing of
the tablet and should decrease over time if left out in
the open. When you are not using it, place your
tablet face down on something soft (pillow, wash cloth,
towel) so as to not scratch the screen, but to expose
the maximum area of the rubber backing to the air.
After several days most of the smell as gone away, but
it may take some weeks exposed to the air for the smell
to gas off and be completely gone. If you have
chemically sensitive skin you may want to be skip this
tablet or be careful with it, as there is no telling
what chemicals were used to manufacture this rubber
THE SECOND THING YOU NOTICE - SCRATCHY SANDPAPER FEEL
This is the screen protector that came from
the screen factory; peel it off starting from a corner,
to have a nice smooth glass screen.
THE THIRD THING YOU NOTICE - SCREEN CAUSES EYE FATIGUE
I've found turning off auto-brightness, and
turning down the screen brightness all the way to
the lowest setting, helps significantly with eye
fatigue and makes the screen not that bad to look
at. It doesn't get rid of the wield stereoscopic
parallelax but it does tone down the "sparkliness" of it
The edges on the glass screen seem sharp to touch.
Upon examining the tablet closer, I found it was not the
glass edges that bit into your finger, but a sharp piece
of plastic trim that went around the edges. I
tried filing this edge from a right square angle down to
have a 45 degree angle on it with a fingernail emory
board, to be more smoother, but the jury is still out
how much this helped. At any rate, after the
filing it isn't visible and didn't touch the glass any.
The specs listed for the tablet on the box are
inflated. The quad core runs at 1008mghz,
and the on board storage is two banks of 1gb and 4gb
(5gb total, not 8gb). You will see the CUP listed
as 1.5ghz, or 1.2ghz (1200mghz), on the box and in some
spec programs, but when I run other spec programs I find
that the cores are running at 1.08ghz (1080) mghz and no
While not a screamer, it is an A31 quad core with a
decent GPU that can play some very intensive 3D games
without lag. I find my Nexus 7 Snapdragon at 1.4,
however, to be *much* snappier, and it throttles and
shutsdown cores when not in use, unlike the A31.
USB CABLE TOO SHORT
You can buy a longer microUSB to USB cable in various
colors from the Dollar Store for $1.
MEET THE MAIN ACHILLES HEAL OF THIS TABLET AND HOW TO
OUT OF SPACE TO INSTALL APPLICATIONS
By default, Android installs applications to
the \ (root) folder.
Unfortunatly.... there is only about 230k left
(stock) on this 1gb drive partition (less on mine,
which hovers around 160k and decreases as I use apps
that fill \data with their temp cache files).
There is a second 4gb drive partition on the device with
3.9gb free area from the factory, that is set to mimic
an sdcard folder. It is called "sdcard" and
mounted at /mnt/sdcard.
Any actual SD card you installed, is called "extsd" and
is mounted at /mnt/extsd.
So why didn't the company make the 4gb drive the /
root drive, and the 1gb drive the mimiced sdcard
drive, instead of the other way around?
Everything would of been totally groovy then. I
have no idea, it would of been a simple change that
would of fixed the main glaring problem with this
tablet, but they did, and its going to be the one
obstacle with this tablet you are going to have to work
On the Nexus 7, as a comparison, the 16gb is one
continous / drive, and you can install apps to your
hearts content without fuss or thinking about anything
at all, and never be the wiser. That's probably
why I have a fondness for the Ematics, because I have to
get down and dirty into the linux command prompt and
waste hours doing it to fix things.
While not fun and kind of annoying, you actually learn
more that way, which I would of never been driven to do
on the much better designed Nexus.
INTERNAL FLASH DRIVE OVERVIEW
I suspect on this device that it does not have
8gb of continguous storage
as advertised, but two seperate internal flash drives
(banks) of 1gb and
4gb. The manufacturer just said to themselves...
"Eh, well just round up
5gb to 8gb so we don't confuse the consumer."
You have four total potential drive devices on this
tablet, which you can
find in the local \mnt folder if you install ES File
Explorer (free from
the Google Play app store):
is 1gb root internal flash drive for the android system
files with about 240mb free
\sdcard. which is is 4gb internal flash
drive with about 3.9 GB free
\extsd. Which is any actual
external microSD card you plug into the
device in its slot
\usbhost1. Which is any USB flash drive you
connect with a male microUSB
to female normal USB adapter (yes you can do this, the
adapter cables are
99 cents on eBay)
There are two ways to move apps from the 1gb partition
to the other partitions...
natively with an android control panel, or using an app
store app such as "App 2 SD":
App 2 SD: Download from searching Google Play for
"App 2 SD" -- this is the simplest
way to move it.
Natively: To move your apps from the default install
location on the 1gb partition
to the 4gb partition, go to Settings Control Panel;
Storage; Apps... Then
right flick in Apps from "All" to "On SD card"... There
will be check
marks by any app installed on the so designated SD
partions. Click those
that are not, which will take you into the specifics for
that t app, and
click the button " Move to SD card". Do this for
all your apps. You not
need to root your device to do this under this version
of Android, its
built into the native control panel.
Note that when you do this, if you don't have an
external SD card
installed, the android stsytem will move it into \sdcard
If you do have an external SD card in the device and you
do this move, it
could be move to either the \sdcard internal drive OR
the externalsd card
capriciously. Android just picks one destination
or the other.
Run this app and move everything you can to SD
A nice feature of App2SD is when you install a new
little app to internal storage, it will detect it and
ask you if you want to move it.
This method in the link below works, I have
done it on my tablet and is simple to do. You will
need an SD card... I used an old 512k one from an
old phone... as you only need about 225K on it to store
the OTA zip file:
Quick and Easy Root for the ematic EGQ307
series Allwinner QuadCore-A31 Bean4.2 Tablet
This file will install the su binary and
set correct permissions only.
1. Right click and download (save as...) RootFromOTA.zip to
2. Insert sdcard into tablet, and on your
tablet goto Settings -> Backup & reset and
select Recovery Mode
3. Select "apply update from external
storage" and select RootFromOTA.zip
5. Install SuperSU from play store
or other super user permissions android app
6. Enjoy Root
INSTALL "SYSTEM CLEANUP"
Install "System Cleanup" from the Apps store
and use it, to move even more apps to SD (Android system
This "System Cleanup" is a little more dangerous to use
than "App 2 SD" as you can use it to move some android
prebundled apps to SD.. stuff
such as Youtube, KingOffice, PogoPlayer, etc.
Even more aggressive and without checks is an app called
"AppstoROM". I found AppstoROM didn't work for me
CREATE SYMBOLIC LINK TO /data/local
(Google Play Store Download Location)
You will need to install a "Terminal Emulator"
Program from the Google Play Store, and should sort of
be familiar with linux to do this.
Basically, you want to "su" to root power, then create a
directory on your SDcard, and make a symbolic link to it
on the root drive so that Google Play will download into
that symbolic root drive, but its actually pointed and
contents are stored on a folder on your SDcard where you
have oodles of free space. This will get rid of
the warning messages "You can not download this app
because you don't have enough free space".
MAKE SYMBOLIC LINK TO CACHE DIRECTORY WHEREVER THAT IS
You would think this would be \cache but I'm
not sure, as I don't see any cache files being stored in
So far, I'm just manually clearing my cache on
the \ internal drive periodicall until I can figure out
where this folder actually is to make a symbolic link to
Directory location of all the expanding application
and application cache cruft: \data
I'm thinking the whole /data folder needs to be somehow
moved to /mnt/sdcard/data and a symlink made to the new
location... unfortunatly, /data is full of symlinks of
its own which defy copying and moving...
CHANGE DEFAULT INSTALL LOCATIONS TO SD CARDS
I find after doing these mods, to change the
default install location, android will still install
small apps on the internal drive, so it is dubious how
clear this mod, considering how involved it is, as it
doesn't seem to work.
As I said, I did this mod to change the default install
location, but I think Android ignores it.
On the plus side, irrelevant of this, if the apps is too
big to fit on your internal card, Android will install
it to sdcard or extsd instead. Small apps though,
it may put randomly on any drive... in which case, if
its your / partion, App2SD should catch it and alert you
and ask you if you want to move it.
CHANGE DEFAULT DOWNLOAD LOCATIONS TO SD CARS
Again, I haven't had success with this, as
this doc seems to related to some odd file browser used
on a phone.
The 4 cores of the CPU run at 1.2, though the
box indicates 1.5ghz. I suspect they may even be
running lower thant this, at 1.0 ghz. This is done
to lower battery drain and heat, but there is probably a
way to upclock this tablet to 1.5ghz. I have tried
to enable throttling and raising the max CPU speed with
various androids apps but with no success yet.
CPU Features Not Implemented
From what I can tell, the A31 CPU has GPS and
compass and other sensors on die, as well as radio
features, built into it, but these were not made use of
or implemented in the hardware. I may be wrong
about this as I have not investigated it in
detail. Unfortunately, the only sensors
enabled on this unit are related to tilt angle, useful
for gaming and that's about it.
POOR BATTERY LIFE
When the unit arrives it has a fully dead
battery. You will have to plug it in before it
will boot. The unit will charge while you
are playing with it however.
The CPU does not seem to throttle or shut off cores not
in use. When I check on my tablet, all cores
are running at full speed always. However,
this chip should be able to throttle down to 120mghz and
up to 1200 mghz (1.2 ghz).
A piece of paper that ships with the tablet says you
should charge and discharge fully the tablet a few
times, before you will get the maximum battery life.
I always keep my tablet plugged in, so this is a not
much of an issue for me.
Removing Screen Snapshot button from Toolbar
If anyone has a clue or knows how to do this, or
rearrange the icons, or reskin the icons, let me
know. They are in a different order than on my
Nexus (which is more logical), which is irksome, and I
find myself pressing the screen snapbutton by accident
instead of the open apps list icon... and then have to
delete the useless screen snapshot. At any rate,
the arrangement of the icons is
daft... a more logical order
would be: Volume Up, Volume Down, Screen Snapshot,
App list, Home, Back Button