Friday, April 16, 2021

Lenovo Tab P11 Pro Review: Good Hardware, Bad Software

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Android tablets are a rare breed. Well Android tablets are even rarer.

Samsung has the high-end Android tablet market cornered with its Galaxy Tab S7 + and S7, and at the other end of the market are the ultra-cheap, undernourished Amazon Fire tablets. Between the two, there’s a void, and that’s what Lenovo hopes to fill.

The Lenovo P11 Tab Pro is the company’s latest slate, and it leaps beyond a Fire tablet, but it doesn’t quite have the power of Samsung’s S7 line. What it does have is a gorgeous screen and a much more affordable price tag, which makes it ideal for watching movies on the go. This is the main use case here, because Android on a tablet is useless.

The right material

Photography: Lenovo

The screen is one of the highlights of the Tab P11 Pro. It’s an 11.5-inch (2560 x 1600-pixel) 2K OLED that’s just as nice and crisp as what’s on my iPad Pro. It has deep, rich blacks and plenty of brightness, which makes the P11 a great way to watch movies. The JBL speakers are equally impressive, with good bass output – better than many laptops I’ve tested recently.

Unfortunately, there is no headphone jack, only one USB-C port, and a Micro SD card slot. Lenovo is adding a USB-C to headset adapter, but if you want to charge your tablet while listening to headphones, you’ll have to go. the wireless route.

There are a few different models. The standard looks more like an iPad, but the folio model I tested features a soft fabric back with a kickstand and removable keyboard like Lenovo’s Chromebook Duet. The kickstand design means it’s a bit awkward and wobbly in your lap, but it’s fine when using it on a flat surface. Remove the casing and the P11 Pro is surprisingly light, weighing just over a pound.

The keyboard is cramped but usable. The trackpad, on the other hand, is the only weak spot in the hardware. The button range is very small and not particularly responsive. This is not a deciding factor, but it definitely detracts from the usefulness of the trackpad.

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