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Xiaomi Pad 5 Unboxing, Hands-on Philippines: Flagship-grade Tab

by John Nieves  September 23, 2021

Initial impressions: The arrival of the Xiaomi Pad 5 in the Philippines gives tablet hunters another solid option for a high-performance slate without paying flagship prices.

Pros

  • Great screen
  • 120Hz refresh rate
  • Excellent speakers
  • Flagship-grade performance

Cons

  • No 3.5mm jack
  • No expandable storage

It’s been 3 years since Xiaomi released a mid-range slate, and today we’re finally getting a follow-up to the brand’s Mi Pad 4. The Xiaomi Pad 5 sheds the Mi branding and comes packing impressive specs, along with a price tag that’s hard to beat.

Packaging and contents

The Xiaomi Pad 5 comes in a plain white box with the tablet’s name printed in front, and though the brand has removed the Mi name from their recent products, the Mi branding is still present on the box though in a reduced capacity.

Inside the box, you’ll the tablet, fast charger, and USB Type-C cable, along with the relevant documentation. Xiaomi also threw in their Smart Pen along for the review of the tablet, though take note that it’ll be a separate purchase and won’t be included in the base price of the device.

Design

Xiaomi knows how to build great-looking tablets, and the Xiaomi Pad 5 is no exception. While the tablet uses a plastic back, it’s reinforced by an aluminum frame.

Our review unit came in Cosmic Grey, though Xiaomi also offers the tablet in a Pearl White colorway. The Cosmic Grey colorway uses a matte finish that repels fingerprints and smudges pretty well.

Xiaomi has favored a more angular design for their newest tablet, as the back terminates abruptly into the frame. It’s a little reminiscent of Apple’s slates, but there’s enough Xiaomi DNA in the design that you wouldn’t mistake their tablet for an iPad.

While the camera module on the rear looks to accommodate two snappers, there’s only one camera there – the other circle is purely for looks. There are magnetic pins on the bottom of the tablet for connecting accessories, and two speakers on the left and right sides. The power button is on the right side, while the volume rocker is on the top. The Type-C charging port is located on the right side.

Display and sound

The Xiaomi Pad 5 has an 11-inch, WQHD+ resolution (1600 x 2560) IPS display that has a refresh rate of 120Hz. It’s a very pretty display, and Xiaomi says it the panel has support for DCI-P3 as well as 500 nits of brightness. There’s also support for Dolby Vision and HDR10 as well, which should make the display perfect for browsing sites, attending Zoom calls as well as watching content from your favorite streaming sites.

Xiaomi’s Smart Pen pairs well with the display, as it’s able to recognize up to 4,096 pressure levels, which makes it a great tool for anyone that needs a precision tool for writing or illustrating that can pair with the tablet. The pen connects to the tablet via Bluetooth and conveniently attaches to the tablet via magnets when you’re not using it.

The tablet uses a quad-speaker setup that has support for Dolby Atmos. The speakers are excellent for what they are, pumping out great sound even with the volume turned all the way up.

Cameras

Don’t be fooled by the rear camera module – there’s only one camera in there despite it being big enough to house two. The lone 13-megapixel camera on the back is an OmniVision OV13B10 sensor that has an f/2.2 aperture fixed focus lens. There’s also an 8-megapixel snapper on the front for selfies and more importantly, Zoom calls.

We’ll be doing a deeper dive into the camera system of the Xiaomi Pad 5, but probably don’t expect too much from them since tablet shooters aren’t especially that capable considering what they’re used for.

Performance, software, and battery life

The Xiaomi Pad 5 is powered by a very capable chipset, namely Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 860, paired with 6GB of LPDDR4X RAM. The tablet comes in two storage variants: 128GB and 256GB, though neither has options for expanding the storage via microSD.

There’s also no cellular option for the tablet, so you’re dependent on WiFi for connectivity.

As far as performance goes for the tablet, it fares pretty well. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 860 is fairly powerful and can run most Android apps and games well without issues, and one can make the argument that it slots more on the side of a high-end chip rather than a mid-range one according to its performance.

The tablet comes with Android 11, along with a special version of MIUI 12.5 that’s been tweaked to make tablet use easier. There’s a split-screen option where you can have two apps running at the same time for better multitasking, as well as several other improvements that we’ll dive into in our full review.

The tablet also has a pretty large battery at 8720mAh, though charging speeds top out at 22.5W, which is a little slow especially considering what the overall capacity is.

Wrap-up and early verdict

The Xiaomi Pad 5 looks to be another great tablet offering in the Philippines, especially when you consider what you’re paying for and what you’re getting. There’s been a dearth of mid-range tabs in the Philippines as of late, and the Xiaomi Pad 5 looks to be a solid option for people willing to drop money for a good quality tablet.

Xiaomi Pad 5 Price Philippines

The Xiaomi Pad 5 is priced at Php 17,990 for the 6GB/128GB variant, with the higher 6GB/256GB variant priced at Php 19,990. There will be a limited early bird price of Php 14,990 for the 6GB/128GB variant, which will come with a free Xiaomi Smart Pen that will be available exclusively on the Xiaomi Official Global Store in Lazada on September 24 only. The tablet will be available to buy in Xiaomi Authorized Stores nationwide starting October 1.

 

 

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    Wish an 8 incher will be available in the future. 11 inch is not that handy anymore when lugging along during trips. Pretty painful also when it slips from your hand, and lands on your face while reading to fall asleep.

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