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Xiaomi Pad 5: Android Tablet Comes At Just The Right Time

Xiaomi is gradually conquering the smartphone market. The Xiaomi Pad 5 returns to the tablet market. In the last few days, I looked at it intensively in the test. I already liked the first impression very much. I’ll tell you in my test report whether this impression has lasted.

Xiaomi Pad 5 In The Test: Conclusion

Rating: 8.1 / 10. Xiaomi is back on the tablet market and, with the  Xiaomi Pad 5, has a compelling product in its range for 399 euros. The design, the build quality, the display, the performance, and the software won me over. The cameras are sufficient for a tablet. We only found it a pity that the Xiaomi Pad 5 lacks a fingerprint sensor. This would have made unlocking the tablet much more accessible. In general, there are no accessories for the tablet.

But I understand that Xiaomi is starting cautiously on the market and would first like to get a feel for how the Pad 5 will be received. For 399 euros, the tablet is excellent, and I enjoyed using it. Anyone who got hold of it for 299 euros at the start of sales should undoubtedly be even happier. If I had to get a tablet now, it would most likely be the Xiaomi Pad 5.

Advantage

  1. 120Hz display
  2. material choice
  3. performance
  4. software
  5. battery life
  6. Price

Disadvantages

  1. No fingerprint sensor
  2. Hardly any accessories
  3. pen too expensive

Design And Artistry Are Convincing

Xiaomi tablets used to be made out of plastic. We can still remember exactly how “cheap” the devices felt. There are worlds between the old models and the Xiaomi Pad 5. The competition is weakening, and Xiaomi wants to benefit from it. Xiaomi tablets used to be made out of plastic. I can still remember exactly how “cheap” the devices felt. There are worlds between the old models and the Xiaomi Pad 5. The Chinese company took a break from the tablet market for a few years and is now building an iPad-level Android tablet that comes at just the right time. 

The competition is weakening, and Xiaomi wants to benefit from it. While the back of the Xiaomi Pad 5 is still made of plastic, it doesn’t feel cheap at all. At first, I even thought it was matte glass. On the other hand, the frame is metal and makes a highly high-quality impression. Xiaomi has also done an excellent job transitioning between the back, the structure, and the display. The tablet sits securely in your hand, and the frame around the screen is just wide enough for you to hold the tablet well without touching the display.

I particularly liked the speakers, of which Xiaomi installed a total of four. No matter how you hold the tablet, the sound is always good because you never cover all the speakers. I know that from other tablets, where you cover the only speaker while playing and then hear nothing at all. The music also sounds pretty good, thanks to Dolby Atmos. I would have wished for a little more bass, but the sound is pleasing.

120Hz Display Brings Joy

A real highlight of the Xiaomi Pad 5 is the display. It has a resolution of 11 inches with a WQHD+ resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 pixels and operates at 120 Hz. Considering how cheap the Android tablet is, you’re in for a real treat here. In the last few days, I have not only used the tablet in the apartment but also often in the garden, where I played music on it or streamed something. The brightness of the LCD panel could be a little brighter, but you can still see everything. An additional “sunlight mode” is integrated, but it doesn’t make any visible difference to me. If you have set the total brightness, you can no longer get out of it. 

We know this quite differently from Samsung devices, where the outdoor mode increases the shine again. The tablet can optionally be operated with a Xiaomi Smart Pen. This makes it easier to implement handwritten entries. I find the price of 99.99 euros to be much too high. To be honest, it wouldn’t be worth it for an accessory that you only use occasionally. But if you draw a lot with it or write mainly with a pen, you can think about buying it. It is magnetically attached directly to the tablet and charged via it. Technologically, Xiaomi is at the forefront.

Extensive Software, Please

When it comes to smartphones, I’m not a big fan of manufacturers customizing the software too much, so I prefer Google’s Pixel devices. Manufacturers have no other choice when it comes to tablets and must act. Google is letting the companies down because they don’t optimize Android for tablets. Xiaomi has thought a lot that the MIUI 12.5 offers added value on a large display. Of course, the dock, reminiscent of macOS from Apple, immediately catches the eye on the start screen. I find this to be extremely practical on the tablet. 

Being able to display and use multiple apps simultaneously also makes perfect sense on such a large display. However, apps can also be completely detached and float above other content. As a result, Xiaomi enables real multitasking. Xiaomi has given the software of the Pad 5 many small details that provide the tablet added value compared to a smartphone. At the same time, you choose whether you want to use modern controls such as gestures or whether you prefer classic on-screen buttons. You can set all this and much more. For example, I configured the display to be calmer and aligned it with my Pixel 5. 

Xiaomi offers many options for customizing the interface. You have to get used to it. We also noticed that the Xiaomi tablet is relatively clean. There is hardly any bloatware pre-installed. Of course, there are Google and Xiaomi apps, but the rest is limited. I would have installed Netflix anyway, and WPS Office is a valuable program. Otherwise, there are only service apps. I am positively surprised that the tablet was not full of garbage.

Performance Is Not Always Convincing

The Xiaomi Pad 5 is equipped with a Snapdragon 860 processor, with 6 GB of RAM and 128 GB of internal memory. The latter cannot be expanded. The tablet runs smoothly. This applies to apps and games. At least as long as you use an app. As soon as the Xiaomi tablet has to multitask, you can already feel that the performance is reaching its limits. 

For example, if you watch a YouTube video in the small window and scroll through a website simultaneously, you no longer notice the 120 Hz. There may be another performance update here. But the Snapdragon 860 is “only” a mid-range processor, and you see it clearly in such situations.

Cameras Are Sufficient

A 13 MP camera is installed on the Xiaomi Pad 5. Although the design would suggest a dual camera, it is a single camera. The photos are ok. In terms of quality, they can be compared to entry-level smartphones. It’s enough for a snapshot. I wouldn’t take pictures with it on vacation. You can’t do that with a tablet anyway. The front camera is also sufficient for video calls. 

Battery Life Is Convincing

The Xiaomi Pad 5 is equipped with an 8,720 mAh battery that can be quickly recharged at 22.5 watts. A maximum of 33 watts is even possible, but you need a more powerful power supply unit, which Xiaomi does not include. But the tablet is also quickly charged with the included power adapter. The battery life was with me in regular operation for 3 to 4 days. I even used a relatively high brightness.

For me, the display-on time was around 10 hours of really intensive use with high brightness. I haven’t reached the 16 hours that Xiaomi states. If I turned the brightness down slightly, 12 hours would certainly be possible. That’s fine for a tablet with a 120 Hz display. As always, I didn’t use 60 Hz. You won’t want to go back once you’ve used a 120 Hz display.

What We Miss About This Tablet

  1. Fingerprint sensor: There is no fingerprint sensor on this tablet. That’s annoying because the power button would be the perfect place. You can use facial recognition, but it’s not that secure.
  2. Keyboard cover: there is also a keyboard for the Xiaomi Pad 5. This could turn the tablet into an actual 2-in-1 device. Maybe someday she will come to us.
  3. 3.5 mm jack: It’s also a pity that Xiaomi doesn’t have a 3.5 mm jack.
  4. HD streaming on Amazon Prime Video: HD streaming of content works via Netflix and Disney. Unfortunately, not with Amazon Prime Video. The Xiaomi Pad 5 still has to be unlocked here.

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