Nokia is now playing its game in the mid-range or budget segment, be it phones or tablets. The brand recently came up with a lower end mid-range tablet called Nokia T21, which starts at Rs 17,999 and goes up till Rs 18,999 for the 4G LTE variant. The tablet aims to compete with Realme’s Pad X and Oppo’s Pad Air at that price. But does it have enough to go against these tablets or it vanishes away in thin air? Let’s find out in our review of the Nokia T21.
Nokia T21: Build & Display
The display and build quality of the tablet is decent. The entire body is made of aluminium and feels tough to hold. Weight distribution is done well, and I didn’t feel it was too heavy to hold.
The buttons are clicky enough, but unfortunately, the device lacks a fingerprint sensor. But so do the Oppo Pad Air and Realme Pad X, so that isn’t a big issue. You do get face unlock support which works fine, so biometrics isn’t that big of a problem.
Then if we talk about the display, it is a decent panel. It is a 10.4-inch 2K display with a 2000 x 1200 pixels resolution and a 5:3 aspect ratio. Further, the display has a pixel density of 226 PPI, 360 nits of typical brightness, and a 60Hz refresh rate.
A 2k resolution display which is this big looks good with enough sharpness and clarity. During my review period of the Nokia T21, I found out that the tablet gets bright enough for indoor usage, but you can’t expect much from it outdoors. Viewing angles are decent and the overall colour tone of the display looks good.
Realme and Oppo’s devices have a similar resolution display.
Nokia T21: Software & Performance
As for what’s powering the device, the Nokia T21 has a 12nm Unisoc Tiger T610 chipset. It is coupled with 2GB or 4GB RAM and 64GB storage. This can be expanded by up to 512GB via a microSD card slot.
The Unisoc Tiger T610 isn’t a very powerful chipset as per what we have experienced in the past, and it shows with the Nokia T21 as well. You cannot expect the performance to be off the charts. What it can do easily, though, is video streaming and not-so-demanding daily tasks such as note-taking, browsing social apps, playing music etc.
As for music, you get stereo speakers, which aren’t the same as Oppo Pad Air and Realme Pad X as they get quad speakers. However, we liked the sound from the dual speaker setup of Nokia T21. They get loud and are loud enough when watching videos or listening to music.
What is not similar to Oppo Pad Air and Realme Pad X is performance. Oppo’s tablet gets Snapdragon 680 chip while Realme’s tablet gets Snapdragon 695 5G chip which is the most superior out of the three. It also does better future proofing as the world moves towards 5G.
If you are someone who likes Stock Android the most, then Nokia T21 is a decent choice in the Rs 18,000 price bracket. This is because other options like Oppo Pad Air and Realme Pad X run on a custom Android skin.
Nokia T21: Battery Life & Cameras
As for battery life, the Nokia T21 shines with an 8200mAh cell that can charge at up to 18 watts speed. During our review of the Nokia T21, it easily lasted more than 2 days with light usage and can go for 2 days with heavy usage as there aren’t a lot of heavy tasks you can execute. Do keep in mind, it can take anywhere between 2 to 2.5 hours to go from 0 to 100% while charging so it’s better to charge it overnight.
As for the cameras, the tablet sports an 8-megapixel camera sensor at the back with an LED flash. There is also an 8-megapixel fixed focus selfie camera sensor at the front.
The cameras on the Nokia T21 are passable, but only because they are on a tablet. While you wouldn’t be using these primarily to take high-quality photos, you can expect them to perform decently when using them for video calls.
Photo quality from both the front and rear sensor is average. Both of them lack sharpness but the colours look okay. While the photos can be soft and blurry at times, it can handle colours well when given enough light, such as bright indoors or outdoor conditions.