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Redmi Pad Review: A Fully Loaded Budget Tab

Does the budget tablet from Redmi have what it takes to become your primary tab?

It was only a matter of time. We checked out the Xiaomi Pad 5 about five months ago and now Redmi has unleashed a new tab that lands at an even more competitive price point. No surprises here. We’ve been saying this for over a year and the numbers validate it – tabs are making a comeback of sorts even at a time our smartphone screens are getting bigger. The iPhone 14 for instance ditched the 5.5-inch mini version in favour of a 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Plus, a clear indication that there are no takers for a smartphone with a sub 6-inch screen.

Tabs are back

IDC numbers revealed that tabs registered a 3.2% YOY increase over 2020, with global shipments of 168.8 million units. What’s driving this increase at a time when we thought our large screen smartphones had become Convergence devices? Could it be Android’s renewed tablet focus with Android 12L and more tablet-focussed features to come? Or is it Android Tab manufacturers like Samsung and Xiaomi finding their own Android hacks with dedicated UI. The answer could lie somewhere in between. In a country like India tab sales are also driven by the need for a personal screen whether you’re binge watching from the comfort of your couch or on your long transit back from work. This is clearly the segment the affordable
Redmi tab is making a play for. Does it have what it takes?

90Hz refresh rate screen on a budget

Redmi is playing up the 90Hz refresh rate on its 10.61-inch display (2000 x 1200 pixels / 220 PPI) that maxes at 400 nits. It’s a vibrant display given the sub Rs 15K asking price. The quad speakers (Redmi tells us these are ‘Dolby Atmos supported’) are reasonably good too. Visibility is quite impressive even under direct sunlight. Whether you’re binge watching or flipping through a graphic novel, it’s screen enough.

Feels good in your hand

We like the design language of this device. It looks refined and certainly more expensive than its price tag. Redmi sent us the Mint Green which is probably the pick of the three cool metallic shades in the mix. At 465 gm, it’s quite light to hold for long periods of time, whether you’re reading or gaming. We didn’t use this device with a case though. The device is powered by a Mediatek Helio G99 processor. It’s not aimed at heavy duty gamers but can certainly get stuff done more most average users who need their tab for everyday Content consumption. The tab notched a respectable score of 1873 in our Geekbench (Multi-core) benchmark test. We checked out the top-end 6GB/128GB variant. Redmi offers three hardware variants including a 3GB/64GB option for those who don’t need to push their tabs too hard. The tab also offers expandable storage up to 1TB.

All the tab you need?

We don’t usually delve too much into cameras in tab reviews but the 8MP selfie cam offers a wide-angle 105-degree field of view that is handy for video calls. The tab also benefits from MIUI that we first experienced on the Xiaomi Pad 5, that has some useful features like multi- windows and spilt screen. It’s one of the many useful additions that makes the Redmi Tab one of the best budget tabs for Content Consumption you can buy right now. There’s hardly any bloatware, the 8000 mAh battery is quite dependable while the 10.61-inch screen delivers a great binge-watch experience at this price.

The Redmi Pad is available in three variants – 3GB/64GB, 4GB/128GB, and 6GB + 128GB at an introductory price of INR 12,999, INR 14,999 and INR 16,999 respectively. There’s a choice of three colours – Mint Green, Moonlight Silver and Graphite Gray.