One minute review
There’s room for everyone on the Lenovo Tab P11. For adults, it’s a fantastic multimedia tablet that’s great for watching your latest Netflix shows, surfing the web, or typing some emails. For kids, it’s great to draw and watch YouTube, while parents can rest easy knowing their kids won’t do anything naughty.
It’s a solid tablet for entertainment and the occasional bit of work, and there’s certainly nothing to complain about with the soft cover and keyboard. In fact, the Tab P11 just isn’t a great tablet to recommend. Where things go a little sideways is with performance not related to streaming content. The Tab P11 will struggle while gaming, and loading multiple apps can sometimes lead to a crawl or force a restart. That’s a shame because it really is a great all-rounder to have, especially since the keyboard and stylus are so easy to use.
For those looking for an excellent tablet for lounging on the couch, this is definitely one of our top picks. The stylus also makes taking notes and drawing a breeze, while the keyboard is great for typing long emails. Productivity mode feels like you’re using an energy-efficient Windows laptop, with movable app windows and a taskbar, and the stand is sturdy enough to support the tablet at almost any angle.
Price and availability
The Lenovo Tab P11 is now available and costs AED 1,699. That’s a somewhat hard price tag to swallow, especially since the excellent Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 can be had for just AED 200 more, with a bigger battery and a much better display.
The design of the Tab P11 looks a lot like any tablet you’ll see on the market, but it’s further accentuated by the fabric-covered detachable keyboard and kickstand. The gray finish makes it look like you’re carrying a notebook and it’s easy to pack in a backpack or shoulder bag on the go. The stand simply clicks into place via magnets and can be easily adjusted to any desired angle. The Tab P11 measures 258.4 x 163 x 7.5mm and weighs about 490g.
The keyboard attaches to the bottom of the tablet via magnetic connectors and connects directly this way – no hassle with Bluetooth connections or having to charge the keyboard separately. It also helps to protect the tablet when not in use.
Port-wise, you only have one USB-C port, which is used to charge the tablet or connect USB-C compatible headphones. Yes, there is no 3.5mm headphone jack here which is a very sad omission so a dongle will have to be used with your existing 3.5mm headphones.
Volume buttons sit on top of the tablet, with a power button on the left. There’s also a microSD slot that can be used to further expand the tablet’s storage – useful if you’re downloading a lot of videos to watch offline. The slot also supports a SIM card, which is great for streaming content on the go. Finally, two sets of speakers flank the sides of the tablet, providing plenty of volume for when viewing content without headphones.
With the stand removed, you’ll notice that the top quarter of the tablet has been given a lightly rubberized treatment, which helps tremendously in gripping it if you don’t have the stand attached.
The 11-inch IPS display here has a resolution of 1200 x 2000, which is enough to enjoy all the streaming content. Images look crisp and sharp and the colors were as bold as they could be for a panel of this type.
It’s big enough to comfortably enjoy contents, but not too bulky to hold with one hand when in bed or on the couch. A bigger screen would of course make for an even more immersive image, but then you’re dealing with something the size of a laptop, which won’t be comfortable. The Tab P11 is exactly in the right place, both in terms of size and weight.
The viewing angles on the Tab P11 are pretty good, so no matter how bent over in bed you’ll be able to enjoy whatever you’re watching. The brightness is also good enough, but if you’re using this tablet outdoors, you might want to do it in the shade. The 60Hz refresh rate puts it far behind tablets from Samsung and Apple, but if you’re just watching Netflix, there’s nothing to complain about.
Specifications, performance and camera
Under the hood of the Tab P11 is a Snapdragon 662 CPU, along with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. That’s okay to start with, but you’ll definitely want to insert a microSD card to load more movies.
We’ll make this point very clear – the Tab P11 is primarily a multimedia tablet, so it excels at watching videos from any streaming service. If you want to open Gmail to quickly write an email or type a few documents into Google Docs, the Tab P11 has no problems at all.
Where it gets really hard is when you try to play games on this tablet or run more than six applications in the background. The interface starts to get sluggish, apps start taking a few more seconds, and even waking the tablet from sleep takes an extra 2-3 seconds before the screen turns back on. The few simple games installed on the Tab P11 worked fine, but anything more complicated like PUBG Mobile or even some car racing games starts to stutter and perform poorly.
The speakers are great for streaming music or watching videos, and even when you’re holding the tablet with both hands, the audio doesn’t sound muffled in any way. It’s great to have this tablet play music in the kitchen while you’re cooking, or just leave it in your kid’s bedroom to watch some shows on YouTube.
The rear camera on the Tab P11 is a 13MP camera and is just about good enough to take a few shots in well-lit areas. Colors lack a lot of depth and it will cause quite a bit of noise in low light. The 8MP front-facing camera is good enough for video calls, but is again quite slow with only 30fps recording capabilities.
Keyboard and stylus
The advantage of the keyboard cover for the Tab P11 is that it physically connects to the tablet, making it immediately usable without having to pair via Bluetooth or even charge. The keys are fairly large for fast typing, but the trackpad is woefully small and often difficult to register taps or button presses. It’s faster to just tap or drag things on the screen than to use the trackpad for finer control.
The stylus (or Lenovo Pen as it’s called) simply charges via a USB-C cable. When the Tab P11’s screen is tapped, it can be used to return to the home screen or call up shortcuts to take screenshots, activate the camera, or take notes. It feels firm to hold and responds to taps and strokes, so writing and sketching is definitely fun with it. In combination with the stand, you can turn the Tab P11 into your own personal sketchbook, wherever you are.
The Tab P11 runs Android 11 and has a few tweaks to make it as productive as possible. Productivity mode pins apps to a taskbar at the bottom and allows you to quickly move app windows or minimize them for later. There is a special Kid’s Space that can be activated for parents, which can hold various kid’s accounts for streaming services, as well as kid-friendly apps.
There is also an entertainment area, accessed by swiping on the home screen. This will highlight popular titles from the streaming services installed on the tablet, as well as recommend videos from other sources such as YouTube.
There are a few pre-installed games and apps on the Tab P11, but not too many to take up precious space.
The Tab P11 has a great battery life for streaming hours of content and can also be charged quite quickly. We were able to squeeze about 12 hours of video playback from the Tab P11 (Wi-Fi on, 75% brightness, Bluetooth off) before it needed a recharge, and even then it didn’t take long to get back to 100%. It only took 2 hours 47 minutes from a 10% battery to a full charge, so you can easily take a long-haul flight watching your own content before plugging in.