Google Pixel Tablet vs OnePlus Pad: The battle of the $500 tablets

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Google Pixel Tablet in Hazel undocking

Google

If you know anything about Android tablets, you’ll know that the market is pretty bare. There’s Samsung, Lenovo, and, well, that’s about it. But in a matter of a couple of weeks, Android fans gained not one but two solid tablet options, both of which are under $500.

Also: Google announces the Pixel Tablet, and it’s not the iPad killer we hoped for

That’s right. Google just announced the $499 Pixel Tablet that pulls double duty as an on-the-go tablet or an always-docked smart display. Google’s announcement comes right after OnePlus released its first tablet, the $479 OnePlus Pad.

Below you’ll find several reasons to pick either tablet over the other. 


Specifications

Pixel Tablet OnePlus Pad
Display 10.95-inch LCD, 2560 x 1600, 500 nits 11.61-inch 2800×2000, LCD, 144 Hz, 500 nits
Processor Google Tensor G2 MediaTek Dimensity 9000 Mobile Platform
Operating system Android 13 Android 13.1 based Oxygen OS
Memory and storage 8GB with 128GB/256GB 8GB with 128GB
Cameras 8MP rear and 8MP front 13MP rear and 8MP front
Battery 12 hours of video streaming 9,510mAh, 67W Supervooc charging
Connectivity Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax, Bluetooth 5.2, USB-C Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax, Bluetooth 5.3, USB-C
Colors Porcelain, Hazel, Rose Halo Green
Price $499 $479

You should buy the Pixel Tablet if…

Google Pixel Tablet in Hazel undocking

Google

1. You find the charging dock compelling

One of the major selling points Google is pushing for the Pixel Tablet is that when you’re not using it, you can place it on the Charging Speaker Dock to not only keep the tablet charged but instantly convert it into a Nest Hub Max-like smart display. The dock’s integrated speaker brings 4x the bass to the Tablet’s audio quality and also allows you to use the tablet as a screen/speaker combo you can Cast video and audio from another device. 

Also: Google Pixel Tablet vs. Apple iPad (2022)

You can also use the new Home app to control your smart home devices, take video calls via Google Meet (and use the 360-degree backgrounds feature), or use it as a digital picture frame. So if you’re someone who likes the idea of a tablet, but can’t get past the idea of it sitting idle when you’re not using it, then maybe the Pixel Tablet was designed for you. 

2. You need a tablet for multiple users

Right now, sharing a tablet like the iPad with family members isn’t really possible. Well, it’s possible, but you can’t fully use it like you’d want by installing apps, rearranging the home screen, or even storing private information on it. 

And while it didn’t get a lot of attention during the Pixel Tablet’s portion of the keynote, Google did show off multiple user support on the Pixel Tablet. The quick demo showed someone switching between user profiles and noted that all of your information and settings are kept to your specific profile and not shared. 

If you need or want a tablet for the family or even just the kids, then the Pixel Tablet appears to make it entirely possible to do so. 

3. You’re already invested in Google’s ecosystem

The OnePlus Pad is a good tablet, don’t get me wrong. But OnePlus doesn’t have the same reach into our homes as Google does. Because of just how intertwined our lives are with Google, and how likely it is that if you’re considering buying a Pixel Tablet you likely already own some Google hardware, it makes sense to stay within Google’s ecosystem. 

Also: All the hardware Google announced at I/O this year

Indeed, the OnePlus Pad runs Android, and it shares a lot of features and capabilities due to that, but if nothing else, Google made it abundantly clear during Google I/O this year that it’s going to continue providing its Pixel products with exclusive features. 

And for many, that’s a pretty darn good reason to stick with Google’s Pixel platform.

You should buy the OnePlus Pad if…

oneplus-pad-1

Jason Cipriani/ZDNET

1. You want a tablet right now

While the Pixel Tablet is new and shiny, it hasn’t officially launched yet. You can preorder it right now, but it won’t start shipping until June 20. That’s a long wait. 

Review: OnePlus Pad: A tablet for Android fans who secretly want an iPad

If you need a tablet right now and don’t want to wait, the OnePlus Pad is currently available to purchase and as of right now, will arrive within a week, depending on your shipping preference. For those who are in a hurry to get their hands on a tablet right now, then the OnePlus Pad is the easy choice. 

2. You need a tablet with a keyboard case

Google announced a lot of features the Pixel Tablet will be capable of, but one thing that wasn’t mentioned is the ability to use some sort of keyboard/trackpad case with it.

However, the OnePlus Pad works with the $150 Magnetic Keyboard that turns the tablet into a laptop-like experience by adding a trackpad, complete with mouse pointer and gestures, along with a keyboard. 

In my review of the Pad, I dinged it for not being the best tablet for productivity. And while I stand by that, the lack of any sort of productivity features for the Pixel Tablet makes the Pad the better option of the two.

Alternatives to consider





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