The HP Stream 7 is a great value. It’s modest tech specs coupled with it’s very low price, make it a great value for anyone looking to have an extremely portable PC at their disposal, throw in some accessories and you have a potent little rig at your disposal for under $150.
However, the Stream 7 is not without its faults. Let’s look at some of them here.
HP Stream 7 Known Issues
No full-sized USB ports
Maybe the first issue with the Stream 7 that you are likely to notice, It doesn’t have any full-sized USB ports, not even one. While it is possible to get around this issue to some degree, it’s worth pointing out in our list of reasons why the Stream 7 isn’t perfect.
Workaround: Because of this shortcoming, you will probably want to pick up an OTG cable to allow you to connect proper USB devices.
Fairly low battery life
The Stream 7 is not an iPad, it’s a tablet PC with a desktop OS. And while iPads boast impressive standby and usage time on a single battery charge, the Stream 7 won’t make it through the day on battery alone if you work it too hard. Granted, the Stream 7 is capable of running PC games, professional grade audio/video/photo software, and the full office suite. But these benefits come at the expense of battery life which, depending on usage, can be as low as 3-4 hours (lower if you are doing heavy gaming or other processing).
The real downer in regards to battery though is, while the iPad can go to standby for a week or more, the Stream 7 loses charge in standby even if you aren’t doing anything, and at a moderate rate. Some users even report that having the volume up (even though the Stream 7 is in standby with no sound being produced) will kill your battery even faster.
Workaround: Turning the volume down to zero when you are not using the Stream 7 has been reported to show improvements to standby time.
If you really want to squeeze more time out of your Stream 7, set it to hibernate or shutdown instead of sleep. The Stream 7 is a PC after all, so it has all of the hibernate/sleep/shutdown/restart functions of a desktop PC running Windows 8.1.
This one is potentially a doozy. Whether this is a deal-breaker for you depends on a.) your patience, and b.) your demand for the fastest wi-fi speeds. I mention patience because HP has been slow to implement driver fixes for some of the software issues of the Stream 7. Many users report wi-fi dropping out daily, with a restart of the Stream 7 resolving the issue. Should HP get around to fixing this problem, then the workaround will not be needed, but until then…
Workaround: Users have reported a fix for the Stream 7 wi-fi dropouts, and it’s fairly painless.
Step 1. Right-click(hold to right-click if using touch) the start menu (windows logo) icon in the bottom left corner of the screen.
Step 2. Click “Device Manager”.
Step 3. Expand “Network adapters”.
Step 4. Double-click on “Realtek RTL8723BS Wireless LAN 802.11n SDIO Network Adapter” (or similar).
Step 5. Click the Advanced Tab.
Step 6. Click “Wireless Mode”.
Step 7. Change mode to “IEEE 802.11b/g.
This should prevent the wi-fi from dropping out on your Stream 7. At least until HP sends out some driver updates.
“Plugged In/Not Charging”
This issue is a unique one and has a bunch of scientific explanation behind it, but all you really need to know is this…Cheaply made chargers and cheaply made cables will not give the Stream 7 the amperage that it needs to charge all the way. The problem mostly comes from using poorly made cables with thinner wires.
Workaround: The charger and cable that came with your Stream 7 should do the job. That being said, sometimes those get lost, and you’ll grab the nearest cable hoping to get a charge on your Stream 7. Try to find the thickest USB cable you can, this will most likely have the largest wires and allow the most current to reach your Stream 7.
Also, if your brightness is too high, lowering it might allow you to drop your current draw enough to where your Stream 7 will begin charging again.
Low Storage Capacity
The HP Stream 7 only comes in one configuration, so you are stuck with 32 GB of storage.
Workaround: The good news is that the Stream 7 also supports Micro SD card expansion for storing games, music, videos, pictures, or whatever else you can think of that is made of 1’s and 0’s. The Stream 7 supports up to 32 GB Micro SD card, so you should grab one of those if you are hitting your limit or plan to.
Let us know if these helped you.