Can you recommend any particular cheapo Chinese tablet?
It's a minefield out there and the only one I've ever seen (was an impulse test-buy of a £79 Sumvision one for the office) wasn't well made.
I quite fancy a bargain-basement tablet kicking around the kitchen. One I could get filthy with the sort of dirty fingers one only gets when preparing food. Obviously for such a menial role I wouldn't want to spend much money, but at the same time it would be nice if it could survive the inevitable fall onto the deck from a waist-high worktop.
I wasn't too upset by the Sumvision one I used (though it was going for £10 less than you paid for yours and perhaps my expectations were lower). Their 9.7" one felt much nicer in the hand though, nice Al case and all. That said I think the StorageOptions ones are a bit better. The biggest drawback I see with the cheapo route is that:
1) you're not going to get software updates from the manufacturer so you'll be stuck with whatever version of android it shipped with.
2) battery life isn't going to be great (still in the region of 5-6 hours on the ones I played with)
3) screens aren't as good (low res with slightly iffy colour reproduction)
4) quality control won't be as good so there's more risk of a DOA.
They do seem perfectly capable of the basics: web browsing, email, simple games (though they obviously won't hold a candle to the 3D performance on the iPad or Nexus7 etc, angry birds works just fine
). If you just want a basic tablet, IMHO these things are acceptable and if you're planning to let kids use them then they're ideal as replacing them isn't nearly as painful.
I don't think you could rely
on any tablet surviving a fall from a worktop on to a tiled floor, at least not without some kind of big bouncy bumper addon.