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Huawei MediaPad T5 Review - 4G LTE, 1080p, stereo budget tablet!

Huawei Nova 5T
Huawei has just the MediaPad T5 for the Philippine market, an Android-powered tablet with premium features at just PHP 9,990.
Huawei MediaPad T5 Review - 4G LTE, 1080p, stereo budget tablet!
Meet Mediapad T5

It highlights a large 10.1-inch IPS 1080p display, 5,100mAh big battery, stereo speakers, and 4G LTE to allow its users to enjoy stream content in full HD resolution with loud tunes even while on the go for hours.

To see if it is really the multimedia tablet designed for you, here's our review.

Unboxing/Accessories

Inside the box
Inside the box

The tablet arrived in Huawei's familiar white box. Inside, you'll immediately see the tablet itself. Upon digging further, you will see the 5V/1A USB wall charger along with the USB-A to micro USB data/charging cable, SIM ejector tool, and paper documents.

Build Quality/Design

Metal backplate

The tablet uses a familiar construction at this price point. It has a cleverly constructed metal/plastic at the back with a plastic bar on top for the antennas. In front, you'll find the glass 10.1-inch 16:10 IPS screen with 1080p resolution.

There is no mention of Gorilla Glass protection in front. It will be better if you will put a screen protector to prevent its screen from getting hairline scratches.

MediaPad T5's design is minimalist. At the back, it has a matte-like paint finish in black. You will also see that it has nice curves for a better grip. The primary camera is placed on the upper right corner of the tablet. I like that it is not protruded.
Big display

In front, we like that it has a wide 16:10 display. It has noticeably thick bezels and I would have liked it better if it is a bit slimmer. But, it has a purpose. The thicker bezels than expected is designed to let you hold the tablet comfortably without touching the display accidentally.

It measures at 243 x 164 x 7.6 mm. At 7.6 mm, it is considered as very slim for a tablet with 5,100mAh big b
Micro USB
Micro USB
Stereo speakers
Stereo speakers

On top, there's a single microphone. Below, you will find the two speakers designed to create a stereo audio effect.

At left, you will see the 3.5 mm headphone jack slot, a hole for the SIM tray and microSD card, and micro USB port. At right, you'll find the volume and power keys.

The tablet can be used in portrait and landscape mode. In portrait mode, we suggest that the power and volume keys should be on top to avoid touching them while resting in your palm.

Overall, the tablet is pretty comfortable to hold at 460 grams. It is just a bit prone to fingerprint smudges even if the paint finish is matte-like.

Display

1080p display
1080p display

As mentioned, the tablet uses a 10.1-inch IPS screen with FHD+ 1920 x 1080p resolution at 218 ppi. It is noticeably sharper and clearer than most similarly priced tablets with 720p display only.

We also like that it can display vivid enough colors and respectable contrast. Viewing angles are alright, but you will struggle with viewing a little if you are not that near its display. Sunlight legibility is decent at max brightness.

In my personal experience, I like using it best for indoor use. I can make me binge-watch Guga Foods YouTube channel for hours.

In its display settings, there is an option to adjust the color tone of its screen depending on your preference. There is an Eye comfort mode to lessen the harmful emission of blue light to your eyes while using the tablet in the low light condition.

Audio Quality

The audio experience from this device is simply amazing for the price! Its 2x down-firing speaker can deliver LOUD tunes. AND, it is not just loud. It is GOOD, especially for the price. For me, this is the main highlight of this device.

It can simply deliver tunes with crisp details, wide resolution, and respectable bass response. Just do not expect it to be as great as other pricier MediaPads with Harman Kardon speakers.

But again, for the price, this is more than decent. There's a bit of hissing, but at least it doesn't have annoying distortion at max loudness. 

Just avoid covering the speakers to enjoy the experience the best.

For wired headphones, will allow you to access the Huawei Histen sound effects. Via software, it can simulate "3D audio" effects and adjustments on the equalizer to make the bass sound big.

If you like that, then good for you. For me, it doesn't just sound as natural compared to the audio of higher-end Huawei tablets which is understandable at this price point. I find its bass on that mode muffled and overpowering as well.

On standard mode, it is still bass-heavy, but it sounds a bit more natural for me.

This tablet also has a single microphone. Surprisingly, it is a respectable type of microphone. It is usable when there's no other microphone around.

For calls, the voice is clear for the receiver. The loudspeaker to hear your caller has an echo though. We suggest using earphones with mic for doing calls.

Battery

5,100mAh is considered as respectable for tablet with 10.1-inch 1080p display. At PCMark it scored 10 hours and 25 minutes.
Battery score of MediaPad T5
Battery score of MediaPad T5

We tried to video-loop it from 1AM to 7:30AM and we still have 40 percent left in the tank. Our estimate, it can survive up to 10 hours straight of watching movies at 50 percent brightness.


For gaming like PUBG Mobile, about 5 hours straight of usage even on loudspeaker mode is doable. Even while on 4G LTE data mode, it can really last.

What more for light usage? In standby, the battery hardly drains at all.

The problem? The charging time. I wished that Huawei made it Quick Charge ready. 0 to 100 percent is around 3 hours and 45 minutes to 4 hours.

Camera

Camera interface

At the back, it uses a 5MP f/2.4 camera. It has an option for Face Beauty, HDR, All Focus, and a lot of filters. It also has AF, but it is slow. Even the tap to focus is a bit slow. 

Fortunately, the shooting speed is quite fine.


Rear Camera Samples

Daylight 1
Daylight 1
Daylight 2
Daylight 2

As expected, shots coming from its 5MP f/2.4 shooter aren't that good even for daylight shots. Exposure is inconsistent and there is grain even in some well-lit scenarios. Even the dynamic range is off.
Well-lit
Indoor face beauty

The indoor face beauty shot that I took looked a bit better than my daylight shot. Its exposure and colors are better. However, it is still grainy and soft.
Indoor dim
Indoor dim

To my surprise, the indoor dim shot that I got is the best among the bunch. While it is still soft and grainy, it looks sharper than may daylight shots. Colors are close to accurate here as well.
Low light
Low light

In low light, images will have more grain. Colors will be a bit violetish as well. Sadly, there is no flash at the back.
Selfie camera UI
Selfie camera UI

For selfies, there's a 2MP f/2.4 snapper with no AF. But, there's 10-level of face beauty. It has a screen flash mode as well.

Selfie Camera Samples

Well-lit selfie with face beauty
Well-lit selfie with face beauty

Like its main camera, do not expect its 2MP f/2.4 shooter to be great. I'll be just glad that it has a selfie shooter. It has respectable colors. But the overall quality is not that detailed. 
Indoor selfie
Indoor selfie

In the dark, you can use the screen flash mode. It'll allow you to have viewable selfies in the low lighting scenes.
Screen flash mode
Screen flash mode

I can't recommend it for taking videos though. If you will use it for video calls, I suggest that you do it in place with bright lights.

But I'm happy that at least, it has cameras that you can use when there's no other camera phone around.

Performance

Work 2.0 performance score
Work 2.0 performance score

Under the hood, it uses the 16nm 2.36GHz 64-bit Kirin 659 octa-core processor with Mali-T830 MP2. It isn't the speediest chip at this price point. But, there are very few officially available tablets in the Philippines with a better chip than this.

To recall, it is the very same chipset used by the pricier MediaPad M5 lite. In our experience, it can reach around 89K of AnTuTu score and about 3.6K multi-core score at Geekbench. See this link for your reference.

Sadly, for some weird reason, the only benchmark that I was able to run is Work 2.0 performance benchmark of PCMark.

The downside? The RAM and internal storage. At 2GB, it will won't perform that well for multitasking. Opening an app or two is advisable to keep the performance quite smooth.


Even if it is expandable, 16GB internal storage is smaller than what I wanted on a multimedia-focused tablet.

It would have been better if Huawei brought the 3GB RAM/32GB storage version of this tablet here instead.

For gaming, it can run PUBG Mobile at the lowest settings possible. The good thing about it? It doesn't get alarmingly hot. Just warm.

The UI

Add caption

The tablet loads Android 8.0 OS with EMUI 8.0 skin. Of course, EMUI 9+ will be better, but EMUI 8.0 is still considered as quite nice. It is feature-rich and customizable. The settings area is a bit cluttered. But, fortunately, it has fewer bloats.

It doesn't have the gesture navigations found on EMUI 9+ skins, but I like that I can still customize the home screen style to a version with app drawer or no app drawer.
Tablet Manager
Tablet Manager

Also, it has a Tablet Manager to let you optimize your tablet and Themes app to change the theme of the tablet.

I also like that its Android keys switches from the lower middle part to the lower left part of the interface for easy touch on landscape mode.
Themes
Themes

There is this Children's Corner as well. It is space in your tablet where kids can play to learn using select apps. You can also use this mode to easily manage what apps your kids can use and how long they spend on the tablet.

Other features

Tablet with 4G
Tablet with 4G

This phone has strong connectivity options like other Huawei devices. It has 
WiFi 802.11/a/b/g/n/a (2.4GHz/5GHz), Bluetooth 4.2 LE, and even GPS. It only has a single SIM for phone functions like SMS and calls though.

But, it has 4G LTE connectivity. It will allow you to stay connected on the go.

There's no fingerprint scanner and face unlock feature for added security though.

The sensors are lacking as well. It would have been nicer if it has a gyroscope for VR/AR apps.

Pros - Pretty good build, large 1080p display, strong battery performance, stereo speaker, 4G LTE ready
Cons - RAM and storage could have been higher,  slow micro USB charging, cameras could have been better

Huawei MediaPad T5 Specs

Display: 10.1-inch IPS screen w/ FHD+ 1920 x 1080 resolution at 218 ppi
CPU: 2.36GHz 64-bit Kirin 659 octa-core processor
GPU: Mali-T830 MP2
RAM: 2GB
ROM: 16GB expandable via microSD card slot up to 256GB
Back Camera: 5MP f/2.4
Selfie Camera: 2MP f/2.4
Battery: 5,100mAh
OS: Android 8.0 w/ EMUI 8.0
Connectivity: WiFi 802.11/a/b/g/n/a (2.4GHz/5GHz), 4G LTE, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, GPS, SIM
Sensors: Accelerometer, sound
Others: Single-mic, Colors: black
Dimensions: 243 x 164 x 7.6 mm
Weight: 460 g
Price: PHP 9,990

Verdict

For its main purpose of being a tablet for multimedia consumption, especially for watching videos and listening to music for hours, Huawei MediaPad T5 did its job quite well for the price.

I also like that it has 4G LTE connectivity to keep you connected. You can even use 4G to stream both videos and music.

It is not a perfect tablet though. Like what I stated above, it would have been so much better if it has more RAM for smoother performance, storage to let you natively store more files and apps, faster charging time, and slightly nicer cameras.

However, at this price point, there are very few tablets who has the features that it presented.

Other tablets with 2GB RAM from other brands could go as high as about PHP 16K.

If 2GB RAM is not really enough for you, maybe spend for the higher-end MediaPad M5 Lite 8.

Build/Design - 4
Display - 4.5
Audio - 4.5
Battery - 4.5
Camera - 3
Performance - 3.75
Average - 4.041/5
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