The Best Value-For-Money Tablet – Xiaomi, Apple, Or Samsung?

New tablets do not come to the market as often as, say, smartphones. But over the past month or so, we saw the release of three new tablets from three of the world’s biggest tech companies. Alongside Apple’s 9th generation iPad, we have the Xiaomi Pad 5 and Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE all arriving in Malaysia recently. Great news for anyone looking to get themselves a mid-range tablet for work, study, or play! Below, we take a closer look at each tablet and give you some pointers on which you should go for according to your needs.

Xiaomi Pad 5 Vs iPad 10.2-inch (2021) Vs Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE – Specs Overview

Of course, the first few details that people look at when comparing tech gadgets are the specifications. Here are all the juicy bits for you to pour over.

Xiaomi Pad 5

Apple iPad 10.2 (2021)

Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE


11-inch IPS LCD 120Hz display (2560 x 1600 pixels) 

10.2-inch Retina IPS LCD display (2160 x 1620 pixels)

12.4-inch TFT display (2560 x 1600 pixels)


Qualcomm Snapdragon 860

A13 Bionic 

Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G






128GB/256GB (non-expandable)

64GB/256GB (non-expandable)

64GB/128GB (expandable up to 1TB)

Stylus Support


Operating System

MIUI 12.5 (based on Android 11)

iPadOS 15

OneUI 3.1.1 (based on Android 11)

Main Camera




Front Camera


12MP (ultrawide)



8720mAh (with 33W fast charging)


10,090mAh (with 45W fast charging)

Which Tablet Is The Right One For You?

Xiaomi Pad 5

Xiaomi Pad 5


Xiaomi hasn’t been coming up with new tablets for a while now until this year. Its last release, the Xiaomi Mi Pad 4, was released way back in 2018!

For the Pad 5, Xiaomi has equipped it with some of the latest tech hardware. The 120Hz high refresh rate display is right up there with the best flagship tablets, giving users the smoothest web surfing and gaming experience. Add to that a four-speaker system with Dolby Atmos, and it is one stellar tablet for entertainment purposes.

But the Xiaomi Pad 5 is not just all fun and games. You can use it for note-taking or creative drawing with the Xiaomi Smart Pen. Besides, the MIUI software makes multitasking easy with split-screen and mini-windows features.

Get the Xiaomi Pad 5 if you:

  • Want an entertainment powerhouse of a portable device.
  • Desire the best gaming experience on a tablet.

Apple iPad 10.2-inch (2021)/iPad 9th Generation

iPad 9th gen Apple September event


Apple’s devices are generally not known for being wallet-friendly. However, the basic iPad is an exception to the rule. Complementing the iPad Pro and iPad Air in the Apple tablet family lineup, the basic iPad is made for budget-conscious consumers who may scorn at the high price tags of the flagship iPad models but still want the full iPad experience.

During Apple’s September event, the company debuted the 9th generation iPad with an updated A13 Bionic chipset, which is on par with the iPhone 11 Series. It is compatible with the Apple Pencil (1st gen) and Smart Keyboard, which makes it an ideal portable work or study machine.

And with iPadOS 15, users can enjoy all the latest and coolest features on this iPad without spending a fortune on the flagship models. 

Get the iPad 10.2-inch (2021)/iPad 9th Generation if you:

  • Want the polished iPad experience with the possibility to download from millions of apps available.
  • Want a long-lasting tablet with years of software support ahead.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE

Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE xiaomi pad 5


Outside of the Apple world, the best tablets usually come from Samsung. The Galaxy Tab series has few rivals in the Android tablet scene, and the company continues to churn out top-of-the-line flagship tablets annually.

This year, Samsung has added the mid-range Galaxy Tab S7 FE in its 2021 tablet lineup alongside the Galaxy Tab S7 and Galaxy Tab S7+. Despite being on the lower end of the spectrum, the Galaxy Tab S7 FE is still a well-specced machine with some components even better than its more expensive siblings.

It has the largest display and battery (with the fastest charging tech to boot) of all the three tablets featured. Specs talk aside, this is the only tablet that gives users a uniquely Samsung experience, like the highly advanced features of the S Pen and Samsung DeX.

Get The Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 FE if you:

  • Want no less than a 12-inch display with long battery life.
  • Work a lot with a stylus.
  • Want to use a tablet as a secondary PC when hooked up to a monitor.

All Three Tablets Are Great On Their Own

iPadOS or Android? Xiaomi or Samsung? Whichever you choose, you are getting a very good tablet which lets you enjoy the latest features. All three go for below RM2,000, which isn’t such a heavy price to pay when you consider the cost of a high-end tablet. They would make for a versatile, do-it-all, and value-for-money Christmas tech gift for the kids, parents, or even for yourself!

Want even more affordable tablets with a three-digit price tag? Then be sure to check out our tablets under RM900 recommendations here!

Check out Tech Thursday for 1-day only lowest price, unbeatable deals, and extra 20% Coins Cashback every Thursday!

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