If you haven’t gone through our video of the Realme Pad unboxing, I had said – The Android tablet market has a scarcity of good offerings in the budget range, and the only good tablet devices available are the iPads that cannot slip into every price bracket. Finally, we are seeing one of the decent offerings from Realme, and this could spark the tablet device market under Rs. 20000. The Realme Pad is finally available, and given the specs, it could easily be called a good option to consider, but is it really good? Let’s check out in the review below.
Before we begin, Realme hasn’t launched a tablet even once in the Indian market, and the major focus has been smartphones and some IoT products in recent times, so having great expectations from the Realme Pad is not what I would have, but we are surely paying a decent amount so you’d want the tablet device to be usable for all the regular usage and for occasional gaming.
The Realme Pad comes with a 10.4-inch WUXGA+ display with the 2000 x 1200 pixels resolution, Helio G80 processor, 6.9mm thickness, 7100 mAh battery, 18W fast charging, Dolby atmos quad speakers, and there are 8MP cameras on the back and front of the tablet. It’s Realme UI for Pad, a customized version of Realme UI made for tablet devices, that helps in the user experience.
Design and Display
The Realme Pad isn’t a premium tablet, yet it looks and feels totally like one. It is an aluminum chassis that flaunts a great look, and the flat back is without any big branding stickers, making it look like a great device. The Realme Pad weighs 440 grams, and that isn’t heavy given how you are looking at a tablet device having a 10.4-inch display.
The placement of the buttons is well done, with the power button on the top right and the volume rocker buttons on the side panel. There are flat sides, and the corners are rounded, and the only issue that I felt was the placement of the headphone jack, which sits exactly around the corner and while the tablet is placed standing horizontally, the placement might seem fine but on flat surfaces, the wire of the earphones could get stressed with time.
I’ve got the LTE variant for review, and it should ideally have some antenna bands on the side for the network reception, but Realme has smartly placed those under the plastic strip on the back of the tablet and it doesn’t take a hit at the look of the tablet. On both of the horizontal sides of the Realme Pad are the speaker grills, two on each side, making this a quad-speaker combination for a surround-sound output. One of the tallet side frames is the dual mics and the SIM card slot, and on the front is that large display, which though is big, makes the tablet even bigger due to those large bezels around itself.
The camera has a bump on the back but the glass won’t directly touch the flat surface when placed on it because there is a metallic ring that is a little raised and that would be the first point of impact. On the front, the camera sits in the center top when the tablet is looked at horizontally. Even the current Apple iPads down to the latest version have the camera in landscape mode, while Realme has chosen the horizontal orientation, probably for those who would be using some cases with those folding stands in them.
The display feels bright enough and the touch response is quite good. There’s nothing to really complain about the display as it works as expected, and in most of the light conditions, it has been offering a good and bright output of content and the display has been easily readable.
User interface – Realme UI for Pad
Okay, to be fair, Realme couldn’t have named this simpler. Realme UI that is made for smartphones, is a little modified for tablets – Realme UI for Pad. Now, is it really different from the phone’s UI? It, in fact, is different but is rather a normalized and reduced Realme UI that resembles stock Android but that doesn’t make it bad. As far as the experience goes, the Realme UI for Pad is simple, easy to use, and the features available are out there to find out easily, not deeply hidden.
At least in the Settings app, you would see some similarity to the Realme UI but the app drawer, the home screen, and even the quick settings are stock-like. There are a few gestures available for the user, including the opening of the camera quickly, assistive ball for shortcuts to a few features, system navigation settings, swiping for screenshots, and the double-tap for wake up.
There are not a lot of pre-installed bloatware apps, and credits to the brand for keeping it clean in the app drawer, with only the Google Play apps, and the inclusion of Google Kids Space and YouTube Kids is something that is very much needed given the current circumstances where work-from-home is mixed with kids’ school-from-home, and sharing of the device for office work and school classes is common, and the space given for kids is a good limited one that makes it easy for parents to limit the content availability.
Performance and Battery Life
Given that the Realme Pad is powered by the MediaTek Helio G80 processor, it gives decent performance for day-to-day usage, but it is not a super performer to give you a great gaming experience. The Helio G80 has been a part of one of Realme’s previously launched smartphones, the Narzo 10. I’ve tried playing the smaller games and the large graphics-intensive ones including Battlegrounds Mobile India and the Realme Pad was able to offer a good 40FPS output at max, and while we tried pushing the graphic settings to unlock the 60FPS output, the frame rate wasn’t constant and there were occasional frame rates.
The regular ones using social media apps, video conferencing apps like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet for classes, and even the OTT platforms would be able to take advantage of everything quite easily without any hassle, and the tablet handles these things quite well. Since we are talking about the performance, the speaker performance is also as important, and the quad-speaker setup on the Realme Pad throws out high-level audio with rich audio quality and these are good for almost everything that you need them for – movies, music, and even video calls.
One of the best things about the Realme Pad is the 7100 mAh battery that it comes with. The tablet device easily lasts over a day with ease for regular users, and the screen usage can also go over 7 hours for the battery to drain down fully from a hundred percent. While you know that a battery with that much capacity won’t be charging fast enough with the 18W charger given in the box, but you don’t have an option and would want to wait for a few hours for the device to fully charge.
The Realme Pad is a very good choice for its price, but Realme should have given better storage options, and given how media fills up the storage pretty quickly, that’s the only major issue one would find with the tablet. The display is good, so is the design, and it performs well too. It is a perfect tablet for media consumption, online classes, video conferencing, and would cater to the needs of a casual gamer who wants to spend some time playing some games, even the heavy ones as Realme has taken care of the performance part with a chipset that can handle things with ease.
At Rs. 17,999 for the top variant with LTE in it, the Realme Pad has almost no competition to face, as brands like Samsung and Lenovo have a couple of options available at that price, but with highly compromised features.