OnePlus Pad is a new entrant in the Android tablet market. A midrange tablet by pricing, the OnePlus Pad covers the basics right in terms of specifications. It boasts a 11.6-inch screen of 144Hz refresh rate, Dolby Atmos-powered quad-speaker set-up, MediaTek Dimensity 9000 system-on-chip, and 67W fast wired charging. The tablet is offered with add-on accessories – magnetic keyboard and stylus – for comprehensive experience. On paper, there is a lot to like about the OnePlus Pad. One must give it to OnePlus for taking a novel approach in building its maiden tablet, but to what end? Let’s find out:
The OnePlus Pad has a premium metallic unibody. It looks stellar in the halo green colour, which is similar to the eternal green colour of the OnePlus 11 5G smartphone but a shade darker. Its add-on magnetic keyboard accessory is offered in the same colour theme, but the stylus is offered in white colour – looks odd in the set-up. Coming back to the tablet, it measures 6.5mm in thickness and weighs 552g. With curvature on the frame, the tablet feels comfortable to hold and operate. It is, however, on the heavier side, which is apparent after extensive usage – without the stand or the keyboard accessory.
The OnePlus Pad seems to have been designed for use in horizontal orientation. Its front camera placement, for example, is centre aligned on the top display bezel in horizontal orientation. Likewise, the rear camera on the top rear side is centre aligned. For horizontal orientation use, however, the power button (upward on the left side) and volume rocker keys (left side on the top) are not well placed. A left-handed person might see no flaw there since these buttons are easily accessible from the left hand in horizontal orientation, but right-handed people would have to make some effort to reach them. Important to note, the OnePlus Pad does not have a fingerprint sensor for the screen unlock mechanism. There is support for screen unlock through face detection, but it is inconsistent.
Display and audio
Among the OnePlus Pad core strengths is its display and audio capabilities. Starting with the display, it is a 11.61-inch LCD screen (2800 x 2000) stretched in 7:5 aspect ratio. The screen supports adaptive refresh rate, which goes up to 144Hz. Details aside, the screen is bright and responsive. It is comfortable to read and watch multimedia content in bright outdoor conditions. The unconventional aspect ratio here is both tall and wide, which is good for multitasking besides routine everyday use. There is enough room on the display in both vertical and horizontal orientation to accommodate additional content – compared to conventional 16:9 aspect ratio screens. It is also good for productivity tasks such as writing and editing documents, working on spreadsheets, and attending video calls with multiple participants. Videos produced in conventional 16:9 and 21:9 aspect ratios show a thick black band on the top and bottom side of the screen, yet there is enough room for the content to appear in detail. Speaking of videos, there is support for Dolby Vision and it works well on supported platforms such as Netflix, Apple TV+, and Disney+ Hotstar.
Complementing the visual experience is the audio. The OnePlus Pad has a total of four speakers, two each on the left and the right side in horizontal orientation. Powered by Dolby Atmos, the speakers are loud, clear and balanced. These are among the best available in any tablet with good depth, clarity, and soundstage. The speakers auto switches left and right channel separation based on tablet orientation. Therefore, irrespective of how you hold the tablet, the audio experience remains top-notch.
Imaging has not been the strong selling point for tablets, and the OnePlus Pad is no different. It has a modest 13-megapixel autofocus camera on the back that is good for scanning documents and basic everyday use. Likewise, the front 8MP camera sensor is basic, but it has the auto-follow feature, which keeps you centered at all times in video calls. It works with Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, Zoom, and select other video conferencing apps.
This is another area where the OnePlus Pad shines. Powered by MediaTek Dimensity 9000 system-on-chip, the OnePlus Pad delivers smooth performance with no lags or slowdown. Thermals are well controlled and the tablet sustains peak performance even after extended use. It handles everyday tasks with ease and shows no weakness in handling power- and- graphic intensive workloads. Gaming experience on the OnePlus Pad is good too, but many popular gaming titles are not optimised to drive the peak performance from the otherwise capable chip.
Based on the Android 13 operating system with OxygenOS 13.1 interface layered on top, the OnePlus Pad feels familiar in use because the interface elements and navigation are similar to OnePlus Android smartphones. The familiar interface helps users jumpstart without getting into manuals to understand how-to use the device and its features.
On its part, OnePlus has done the work to deliver an experience that is different from smartphone experience. For example, there are gesture controls and navigation – swipe down two fingers to enable split screen with two apps open side-by-side. Likewise, there is a side slider for quick access to tools and select apps from any window, resizable apps window to adjust the app display size on the main screen, and floating window to open apps in pop-up windows. These features let users make the most of the tablet’s massive screen and enable multitasking.
It is all good until you start experiencing the limitations in the Android operating system. For example, many apps are not optimised for tablet experience, not all apps support side-by-side view, Google Chrome opens websites in mobile version, and much more. These let down the otherwise promising tablet by restricting its utility.
Rounding up the package of good things about the OnePlus Pad is the on-battery life. As a companion big screen device, since it has no SIM support, the OnePlus Pad easily spends a week on a single charge. Extensive usage, including power- and graphic- intensive workloads, drain the battery quickly. Yet, it easily goes through more than a day before asking for a battery refill. With the 67W fast charger that comes with it, the OnePlus Pad charges quickly in less than one-and-half hour.
OnePlus has done so much on its part with its maiden tablet, yet there is a distance to cover. That said, the OnePlus Pad is a promising midrange tablet let down by limitations in the Android operating system. In its own right, however, the OnePlus Tab is the tablet in Android space to consider if you need an accompanying device for work, entertainment, and everything in between.
OnePlus Pad: Pricing and accessories details
8GB RAM and 128GB on-board storage: Rs 37,999
12GB and 256GB on-board storage: Rs 39,999
Magnetic keyboard: Rs 7,999
Stylus (Stylo): Rs 4,999
Folio case: Rs 1,499
OnePlus Pad: Unboxing