A PC, a Mac… or a digital tablet? If slate manufacturers often want to convince us that it is possible to replace a classic computer with a tablet, the latter are still more dedicated to entertainment than to productivity. Admittedly, it is often possible to graft them a keyboard or a stylus, but their ergonomics, their limited connectivity (to associate a hard disk for example), their often cramped storage space … quickly assert the limits of this type of equipment. .
However, digital slates are still very practical for taking notes, taking lessons, managing your mailbox, surfing the Internet, holding video meetings … And thanks to the cloud, the gateways from a tablet to a computer are increasingly simple to find a file, to work on a document which, constantly updated, can navigate from one device to another.
However, tablets are preferred for multimedia, video viewing, occasional games, or even to control connected objects in the home. Even if some make efforts to take care of their audio quality, the use of a Bluetooth headset or True Wireless headphones remains to be recommended for a better immersion. 20 minutes has tested four models that can meet most uses and whose qualities allow us to recommend them to you.
Huawei MatePad 11: economical and efficient (but without Google)
With an adaptive 11 ” / 27.94 cm 120 Hz LCD screen with a definition of 2560 x 1600 pixels, Huawei’s new MatePad 11 WiFi tablet is a pleasant use for multimedia and its four high -Stereo speakers deliver more than adequate sound, both for video and for gaming. For the latter discipline, the onboard processor is perfectly suited for resource-intensive games. Exceeding 20 hours, the autonomy of this slate is excellent. The photo, with perfectible results, remains as with most tablets its weak point.
Deprived of Google’s services due to an American embargo, Huawei switches from Android to its own HarmonyOS 12 operating system (launched last June) to power the MatePad 11. The AppGallery (Huawei’s application store) nevertheless grows over the months. TikTok, Snapchat, Netflix, premium video, Disney +, Facebook, Instagram… and TousAntiCovid are there, as we have verified! Downside: with each application download, the user is entitled to an advertisement … rather unwelcome.
Tip: through the GSpace application, it is possible to find Google applications, such as Photos, GoogleMaps, but hacking will remain restrictive for the less experienced users. Fluid, even if it takes a little time to adapt, HarmonyOS 12 will ultimately not confuse the user too much.
Good plan: bought on the Huawei site, this tablet is sold with its free magnetic keyboard.
Price: 399 euros (64 GB / 6 GB); 499 euros (128 GB / 6 GB).
Screen: 11 ” (120 Hz adaptive / 2560 x 1600 pixels). Sound: 4 stereo speakers. Processor: Snapdragon 865. Memory: 64 and 128 GB. Photo: 13 rear megapixels / 8 front megapixels. Video: 4K up to 30 fps. Battery: 7250 mAh. Weight: 485 g.
Galaxy Tab S7 FE Wifi, from Samsung: versatile and fast (and with a stylus)
This new WiFi version of the Galaxy Tab S7 FE 5G is a success. Very thin (6.3 mm), it is pleasant in the hand and its weight (698 g) is not a handicap in use. Enough to take advantage of its 12.4 ” / 31.49 cm wide screen to entertain yourself with your downloaded films, series and games before taking them on transport.
Supplied with its S-Pen stylus, this Android tablet can be transformed into a tool for transcribing lessons (with automatic handwriting recognition), then exporting to Word, PDF … For the youngest, the onboard Penup application allows you to make drawings, coloring, etc. To go further, head to Clip Studio Paint (free application for 6 months) and the realization of much more elaborate works. Be careful though: this stylus is not connected and its use will remain limited.
Unlike its big 5G sister which is equipped with the Snapdragon 750G (5G) processor, the new slate is powered by the more verbose Snapdragon 778. The use of the Tab S7 FE Wifi gains in speed.
Good deal: until October 31, buyers of the Galaxy Tab S7 FE Wifi will be able to receive their choice of GalaxyBuds Live headphones or a Book Cover Keyboard.
Price: 599 euros (64 GB / 4 GB); 649 euros (128 GB / 6 GB).
Screen: 12.4 ” / 31.49 cm (2560 x 1600 pixels). Sound: 2 Dolby Atmos stereo speakers. Processor: Snapdragon 778. Memory: 64 and 128 GB expandable up to 1 TB. Photo: 8 megapixels rear / 5 megapixels front. Video: Full HD up to 30 fps. Battery: 10090 mAh. Weight: 608 g.
Apple iPad Air: muscular and scalable (but without Apple Pencil)
Faced with the iPad Pro, larger, better equipped, but 200 euros more expensive anyway, Apple’s iPad Air remains a safe bet (one year after its launch) for work and entertainment. Rejuvenated with pop colors (gray, silver, rose gold, green and sky blue), the tablet with more angular curves than previously exudes the quality of manufacture with its aluminum frame. One of the edges now houses the fingerprint reader to unlock the machine. No more big button at the bottom of the screen!
The slate’s nearly 11-inch screen is an example of image quality, with excellent calibration and anti-glare treatment that makes it fairly convenient to use in transport, for example. 120 Hz, it also has good provisions for video games.
The tablet only has two stereo speakers, but the sound produced is good, even if the volume is turned up a bit. We forget the mini-jack for good, make way for Bluetooth (and USB-C) and we regret that the Apple Pencil stylus remains optional (sold 135 euros).
Under iPad OS 14, the iPad Air will open this fall to the new version of Apple’s operating system dedicated to tablets. With iPad OS 15 (currently in beta), the tablet should considerably gain in ergonomics. On the program: a more practical home screen with its widgets offering a glance access to the calendar, to contacts, to emails… or even a more convenient multitasking mode.
New expected productivity in iPad OS 15: the Quick Note function which allows instant note taking in any application. The Apple ecosystem, with document transfer from iPad Air, iPhone or iMac will be further strengthened. And for collaborative work, group video with FaceTime will be much easier thanks to the sharing of a simple link with your collaborators… like on Google Zoom!
Hot Deal: Apple is giving AirPods as freebies to eligible students with any purchase of an iPad (or Mac).
From 669 euros (64 GB / 6 GB); 839 euros (256 GB / 6 GB) in Wifi version.
Screen: 10.9 ” / 27.68 cm (120 Hz / 2360 x 1640 pixels). Sound: 2 stereo speakers. Processor: Apple A14 Bionic. Memory: 64 or 256 GB. Photo: 12 megapixels rear / 7 megapixels front. Video: Up to 4K at 60 fps. Battery: not specified. Weight: 458 g.
Yoga Tab13, from Lenovo: agile and built for entertainment (and with a soundbar)
Imposing with its large 13 ” / 33 cm screen and its striking weight (830 g), the Lenovo Yoga Tab 13 WiFi tablet was first designed for sedentary use. But for the strong, it also provides mobility, despite the absence of a rear camera. OK for video meetings thanks to its front camera, but it will not perform as a replacement camera.
Equipped with a Dolby Vison screen of good definition (2160 x 1350 pixels), this tablet has the good idea to emphasize its sound quality. Integrating four speakers, two of which form a mini sound bar in the lower part of the device, the tablet offers generous sound (Dolby Vision) which can easily be increased in volume. On arrival, a real extra television for its streaming sites, with an autonomy of up to 12 hours! And as we have verified, the anti-fingerprint coating on the screen of the Yoga Tab 13 is particularly effective!
Lenovo’s good idea also comes from the tablet foot. Well designed, it allows it to be tilted to the millimeter, but also to be hung. It is very practical on a corner of a table, a kitchen …
For productivity use, an HDMI cable will connect the slate as a second screen to a computer. Thus transformed into a complementary 2K screen, the tablet then finds its place for more open windows or needs dedicated to graphics, which is particularly practical when paired with a PC, fixed or portable. For its part, the Precision Pen 2 (sold 69 euros) provides thanks to its 4096 levels of sensitivity good precision for note taking, even drawing, illustration. Thus, the tablet can be sufficient on its own in class or in a meeting, but at a high price.
Little more: covered with Alcantara (an extremely soft fabric), the back of the tablet is particularly pleasant to the touch. This contrasts with the slates with a metal back and cold contact when held in hand!
Good deal: 10% discount for all products on the Lenovo site.
From 799 euros (128 GB / 8 GB).
Screen: 13 ” / 33 cm (2160 x 1350 pixels). Sound: 4 speakers, Dolby Atmos. Processor: Snapdragon 870. Memory: 128 GB / 8 GB. Photo: 8 megapixels front. Video: without. Battery: 10,000 mAh. Weight: 830 g.