FOR the past month, my ASUS Zenbook OLED earned a well-deserved break because of an experiment that lasted way longer than I expected.
Like other content creators and the growing number of remote workers, I bring my laptop wherever I go, even during vacations or overnight staycations, because you’ll never know when you’ll need to work and require a bigger screen, especially if you need to edit spreadsheets and presentations.
So, when Honor sent me the Honor Pad X9 that came with a keyboard, I just had to test it out to see if it can indeed replace my laptop. This isn’t the first time I’ve used a tablet with a keyboard setup, but the previous one didn’t have Google, making it inconvenient to use, especially when most of my work uses Google’s apps.
The Honor Pad X9 isn’t the most powerful tablet, nor does it have the best display, but for those looking for a capable tablet, its price tag of P11,999 and includes a Smart Keyboard make it a very good deal.
DESIGN AND BUILD
THE Honor Pad X9 has an elegant and minimalist design that effortlessly blends aesthetics with functionality. The first time I took it out of the box and held it in my hands, I immediately noticed its premium build quality.
The Honor Pad X9 impresses with its simple but sleek design, giving it a more premium feel than its price suggests. The all-metal construction and flat sides not only exude a sense of durability but also contribute to a modern and sophisticated look. And though I prefer my smartphones shiny, I do appreciate a more subtle color for bigger devices. The Space Gray back panel flaunts the HONOR branding in the middle, creating a minimalist look.
Up front, the bezels are not the smallest I’ve seen, but unlike in a smartphone, these thicker bezels provide some place to rest your fingers. Around the flat edges, there are a bunch of tiny speaker holes that are integral to its audio prowess, which is a highlight we’ll get into later. The power button and volume rocker are placed on the same side, just above the front-facing camera. This ensures that they won’t get in the way when using the device in landscape mode, especially when watching content or playing games.
One of the main reasons why I prefer bringing a tablet on short trips is because it’s relatively smaller and lighter and could fit inside my Pacsafe cross-body bag. The Honor Pad X9 measures 267.3mm x 167.4mm and is 6.9mm thick and weighs 499g. Its size is perfect for everyday use, as its compact enough for school or work, and large enough for movies and games.
Despite its slightly weighty feel, the tablet’s ergonomic design ensures a comfortable grip. For those concerned about prolonged usage, the keyboard case provides added peace of mind and enhances the device’s stability when placed on surfaces and gives you the right angle when using it as your laptop. Unlike your phone though, I would strongly advise using this tablet while lying in bed because the risk of it falling on your face might result in more than just a bump on the head.
The Honor Pad X9 features an 11.5-inch 2K Honor FullView Display with an 86% screen-to-body ratio. The display is bright and vivid enough to make those long hours of looking at the screen a pleasant experience, even if you are just staring at endless text or scrolling through your feed. The 120Hz refresh rate, meanwhile, adds a layer of smoothness to every interaction. The high refresh rate not only enhances the tablet’s overall performance but also elevates the quality of gameplay, making it suitable for those who enjoy casual gaming on the go. It’s also worth noting that like the Honor 90 5G, it’s equipped with eye-protection technologies and has TUV Rheinland certification.
While its display is just okay, the Honor Pad X9 does have a remarkable speaker setup that provides an immersive audio experience. With a total of six speakers strategically positioned around the device, it’s clear that Honor has prioritized audio quality in this tablet. The speakers are not just ordinary; they are designed to create a surround sound effect that elevates your multimedia experience to new heights. By releasing sound from the bottom speaker and utilizing symmetrical left and right arrangements, the tablet produces a surprisingly rich and multidirectional sound field. Whether you’re watching your favorite series, movies, or immersing yourself in your favorite game, the Honor Pad X9’s speakers offer a remarkable audio experience. The tablet’s audio capabilities are not limited to entertainment alone; they can significantly enhance your online learning or video conferencing experience, thanks to Honor’s Vocal Enhancement Algorithm. The only downside to its audio capabilities is that it doesn’t have a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Just a quick note about its cameras. Tablets are not known for having good cameras, and the Honor Pad X9’s 5MP front and rear cameras serve their purpose for taking quick snapshots and video calls. In well-lit environments, the rear camera captures decent images for everyday use, while the front-facing camera provides satisfactory quality for video calls and selfies.
SOFTWARE AND PERFORMANCE
Under the hood, the Honor Pad X9 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 685 chipset that is optimized for everyday tasks, light gaming, and multitasking. Like I mentioned earlier, I’ve been using the Honor Pad X9 for around three weeks, and I didn’t have any separation anxiety from my laptop. I even paired it with a Bluetooth mouse, which made working on spreadsheets and presentations even easier. I was able to create blog posts, edit photos, create reels via Capcut, and by pairing it with my Honor 90, I can simply drag files to transfer them to the tablet. I did have to change the default keyboard to GBoard so that the onscreen keyboard won’t constantly appear and interfere when I’m writing my articles.
Despite having just 4GB of RAM, the Honor Pad X9 provided a comfortable multitasking experience. But do expect some occasional hiccups when doing more demanding tasks or running multiple resource-intensive apps simultaneously. Remember that this is still a budget tablet after all, and even though you can add 3GB more via Honor RAM Turbo, it still has its limitations. Another thing that’s limited is its storage as the Honor Pad X9 has non-expandable 128GB internal storage.
LONG BATTERY LIFE, LONGER CHARGING
Battery life is often a concern with budget tablets, but the Honor Pad X9 exceeded my expectations. Its 7,250mAh battery lasted me almost an entire workday with my usual daily work routine making it an ideal companion for those who prefer not to carry around charging accessories constantly. Sadly, the 10W power adapter takes a long, long, long time to fully charge the battery, taking more than three hours.
Despite not having the best display or the snappiest performance, the free smart keyboard gives the Honor Pad X9 a big advantage over its competitors. Considering its price tag of P11,990, the Honor Pad X9 has proven to be a reliable work and entertainment companion whenever I don’t feel like bringing a laptop and need to do light work.
For professionals on the move, students seeking a reliable study companion, or those who want a bigger screen for immersive entertainment experiences, the Honor Pad X9 also presents a compelling package.
BLACK FRIDAY DEALS
Honor joins the Black Friday sale with up to P9,000 discount on the HONOR 70 (plus free Gift Box worth P2,499). The Honor X6 is also down just P3,990. Moreover, the Honor X9a 5G will be priced at P16,340 while the Honor Pad X9 will be available for P11,590 with a free Magic Keyboard worth P2,499.
Lastly, the crowd-favorite Honor 90 5G will be on sale for only P23,990 from its original price of P24,990 with a free Gift Box worth Php 2,499. Don’t miss out on these exciting deals this Black Friday Sale from November 24 to 26, 2023, available on Shopee, Lazada, TikTok Shop and Honor stores nationwide.