The mid-to-high-end tablet space is dominated by a handful of brands. Lenovo is one of them, and its latest release, the Tab P12 Pro, is pitched as being an all-in-one for entertainment and productivity. It often succeeds, with a premium build, top battery life and thin frame. It shines when used for watching movies and online content – and while it will perfectly suit anyone who likes a larger display, Lenovo will likely find it very tricky to stand out from the competition in this price category. This is solely for fans of large displays. Everyone else can probably look elsewhere.

Inside, it’s got a high-end Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 processor and up to 256GB of storage. Want to do some typing or document editing on this thing? No problem. There’s an optional keyboard and a dedicated “productivity mode.” Want to play games? It handles graphically intensive apps without hassle. On paper, Lenovo has clearly attempted to tick every box of what a modern tablet should be.

In reality, we would only really recommend it to anyone with a “big high-res display” at the very top of their priority list. While there’s a lot we liked about Lenovo’s Tab P12 Pro, we ultimately found it hard to love. It attempts to be all things to all people, but never finds its own identity and is overshadowed by other tablets that have recently hit the market, including that aforementioned Apple slate.

But does the Tab P12 Pro do enough to earn a spot on our best tablet guide? We tested it to find out if it was worthy of inclusion, and here’s the verdict.

Our experts have been hands-on with a lot of Android and iOS tablets in recent months, so don’t miss our guides to the best Android tablet, best budget tablet and the best tablet for kids, which are all based on extensive personal testing.

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Lenovo P12 Pro review: summary

Like its predecessor (here’s our Lenovo P11 Pro review if you are considering that model), the Tab P12 Pro seeks to combine entertainment and productivity, with a 12.6-inch high-resolution display and the option of adding a keyboard case for typing on the go. For any creative type, there’s a stylus in the box, which is great to see – although the keyboard add-on required to fully use the productivity mode does not appear to be widely available in the UK at the time of writing.

The 12.6-inch display is undoubtedly nice, and after using the device for multiple days we were convinced that’s the reason to buy this tablet. It is more affordable than the similarly sized Samsung Tab S8 Plus and iPad Pro. But for us, the form factor wasn’t always ideal – despite the well-built chassis being pleasingly thin. It was sometimes awkward to hold, and it is not what we could describe as portable.

Price: The Lenovo Tab P12 Pro (128 GB) is priced at £749.99 via the Lenovo website, but can be purchased for £629.99 when using the code SPRING22 at checkout. The Tab P12 Pro model with 256GB of storage is available for £799.99 at Very.

Key features:

  • Large 12.6-inch 2K (2560×1600) AMOLED display
  • Slim bezels and thin aluminium frame
  • 13MP autofocus + 5MP wide angle camera setup
  • Bundled with a Precision Pen 3 stylus
  • Fingerprint reader in the power button, Face unlocking
  • JBL quad-speaker system with Dolby Atmos

Pros:

  • The display is large, smooth and crisp
  • A great device for watching content
  • Thin bezels and aluminium frame

Cons:

  • Too expensive to be competitive
  • Software is not as good as rivals
  • No 3.5mm headphone jack

What is the Lenovo P12 Pro?

The P12 Pro tablet is a successor to the P11 Pro and was released in the UK late last year. It’s got a 12.6-inch 2K display and a very thin (5.63mm) frame, with a quad-speaker set-up, 120Hz refresh rate and a Precision Pen 3 stylus in the box. It runs Android 11, with Lenovo usually providing one future OS upgrade.

We tested the “Storm Grey” model with 8GB of memory and 256GB of storage and this review is based on our experiences without the keyboard accessory.

How much is the Lenovo P12 Pro?

The Lenovo Tab P12 Pro (128 GB) is priced at £749.99 from the Lenovo website but can be purchased for £629.99 when using the code “SPRING22” at checkout. The Tab P12 Pro model with 256GB of storage is available for £799.99 at Very.

Let’s get it out of the way up-front: the P12 Pro is too expensive to recommend right now, but that may change if it gets discounted this year. It’s pricier than the Apple iPad Air 5th generation and the new iPad mini 6th gen, although more affordable than the similarly-sized 12.4-inch Samsung Tab S8 Plus, which starts at £849. The Apple iPad Pro (12.9-inch) is £1000 or more, but that’s on a completely different level when it comes to chip quality, app performance and the software user experience.

If you need a big display on an Android slate above all else the P12 Pro may be worth your money, but the overall package can’t compete with rivals at this price point.

Lenovo P12 Pro features

The features set of the Lenovo P12 Pro won’t be a surprise to anyone who has used an Android tablet before. It has everything you would expect, including the variety of usual Google services – Play Store, Drive, Maps, Gmail, Docs etc – and comes with Netflix, Amazon Music, Microsoft Office, OneNote and more pre-installed.

The Instant Memo app lets you take advantage of the in-box stylus to create notes using the pen, and there are plenty of other creative and drawing apps available via the Google Play Store if you want to take advantage of the large display for artistic projects. The stylus, known as the Precision Pen 3, connects to the back of the tablet for wireless charging, doubling as a place to store it when not in use.

We liked the snappiness of the magnetic pull but found the placement to be a bit awkward when holding the tablet in the vertical position as it clashes with your hand. This won’t be a problem if you hold the tablet on its side, though.

There was no bloatware (unwanted apps) pre-installed on the tablet so you will be mostly starting with a blank canvas when it comes to populating the home screen with app software of your choosing. Two Lenovo services are here: Project Unity, which lets you use the tablet as a secondary screen for a Windows computer, and “Productivity Mode,” which can be used in combination with a keyboard accessory (which is sold separately) to mimic a more laptop-like experience.

You can navigate the Tab P12 Pro using gesture controls or the more traditional layout that shows three buttons. The Face recognition login – which is paired with a PIN number or pattern – was easy to set up and worked flawlessly when tested. We unlocked the tablet using our face ten times in a row without issues.

The audio that pumps out from the Dolby Atmos quad-speaker set-up is great. It goes louder than you would ever need it indoors, and the sound was crisp, clear and bassy without ever becoming murky even when it was cranked up.

If you plan on taking the P12 Pro tablet into the real world you better have a pair of wireless headphones, because there’s no 3.5mm headphone jack to be found. That’s not too surprising as most tablet-makers are ditching them these days, and Lenovo gets a lot of credit for including a USB-C to 3.5mm cable inside the box.

Lenovo P12 Pro display

If there’s one aspect of the Lenovo P12 Pro that deserves some praise, it’s the display. That’s one of the big reasons to buy this tablet, in our opinion.

The panel is a 12.6 inch (2560 x 1600) AMOLED touchscreen that goes up to 600 nits of brightness, which is roughly comparable with the Apple iPad Pro and more than the Galaxy Tab S8 Plus, which offers approximately 500 nits.

We found little to complain about with screen performance, which is aided by the 120Hz refresh rate that keeps scrolling through apps feeling silky smooth.

We also loved the small size of the bezels (the borders around the screen). The bezels are smaller than your fingertip, and the compact size doesn’t interrupt the user experience when holding the tablet. They are significantly smaller than the borders found on the iPad Air 5th generation, which we reviewed just before this.

Lenovo P12 Pro camera

We never recommend using a tablet’s rear camera to take serious photography – that is still the domain of smartphones or DSLR cameras. But there is a perfectly fine dual camera set-up on the P12 Pro, a 13MP main lens and a 5MP wide lens. We found results to be perfectly fine in bright conditions outdoors, but there was unwanted noise when shooting in darker conditions. Not unexpected, and it will be more than usable if you want to be taking basic, casual, photos.

Thankfully, the positioning of the front-facing camera is on the longer side of the tablet, meaning that it’s centred when you are doing video calls in the horizontal position. The selfie camera is an 8MP lens with face detection, although there is nothing as fancy as Apple’s Centre Stage tracking tech to be found. It is perfectly usable for video chats and the P12 Pro comes preinstalled with Google Duo.

Lenovo P12 Pro design

The design of the Lenovo P12 Pro feels premium and minimalist. There’s no big branding and the glass front looks great when matched with the metallic grey aluminium back. It’s a look we have seen before but continues to work.

The USB-C port is in the middle of the bottom panel, with a speaker on each side. On the right side of the tablet (in vertical orientation) are the volume buttons, the top is where you will find the power button with fingerprint sensor, a microSD card slot for expanding the storage and the remaining two speakers. On the left side of the P12 Pro is a trio of magnets for attaching the optional keyboard accessory.

Lenovo P12 Pro set-up: how easy is it to use?

We found setting up the P12 Pro to be straightforward and easy to follow. Anyone who has recently set up an Android device should find it familiar. It offers a guided process as you choose language, agree to Lenovo policies, connect to your home Wi-Fi, copy any apps or data, sign in to your Google account, choose a web search engine and set your password or face scan. It takes well under 10 minutes in total.

Lenovo P12 Pro battery life and performance

If you are a Netflix binger or heavy tablet gamer, the P12 Pro provides more than enough power thanks to its 10000mAh+ battery capacity, which supports up to 45W fast charging. How much power you get will always depend on your daily usage, but Lenovo has said the Lenovo P12 Pro is able to handle up to 17 hours of online video, and up to 10 hours of internet browsing from a single charge.

In our tests, which involved playing a continuous YouTube video with brightness at around 75% to see how fast it would drain, the battery dropped 30% in four hours, 10 minutes. That means you could watch multiple movies and still have power to spare. Charging from 45% back to full took under one hour and 24 minutes.

Inside the P12 Pro is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 processor (3.2 GHz), which is fairly high-end but lacking when compared to Apple’s M1 series.

While the skin of Android 11 used on the device wasn’t our favourite experience of all time (it is fairly generic and doesn’t match the premium vibe of the tablet’s look) we didn’t experience lags or stuttering when using apps or playing games.

We tested multiple mobile games downloaded from the Play Store – including Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes and CarX Rally – and found them to run without issue on the slate, and the colours and clarity looked very good on the large display.

One big saving grace in terms of software may be Android 12L, which is currently available as part of a preview program. This update makes Android 12 work better on big screens like the Tab P12 Pro, but currently takes a bit of work to get operational so it’s not likely to be a major draw for now unless you are fairly tech savvy.

Our verdict: should you buy the Lenovo P12 Pro?

Do you want a large display for stylus drawing and Netflix binges but don’t want to pay Apple or Samsung-level pricing? The Lenovo P12 Pro could work for you. It has a solid battery, the build quality is premium and the screen bezels are tiny. For everyone else, there are better options in terms of both affordability and portability.

At the moment, the Tab P12 Pro costs between £629.99 and £800 in the UK, and that feels like it’s too much for what you are actually getting. The Apple iPad Air (5th gen), which has a 10.9-inch display, starts from £569 and offers a much better user experience and software performance, at least in our opinion.

OK, so you want to stick to Android. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8, with an 11-inch display, is priced from £649 and also comes with a stylus in the box. The Xiaomi Tab 5 has an 11-inch display, 120Hz refresh rate screen and a premium design for under £400. Want Lenovo? The Tab P11 Plus now starts from just £229.99.

The Tab P12 Pro is at its best when used as a way to watch videos from streaming services at home, or for artistic projects that require the use of a stylus. But it’s not for everyone, and there is honestly better value for money to be found elsewhere.

Our rating:

  • Features: 3.5/5
  • Screen quality: 4/5
  • Design: 3.5
  • Set-up: 4/5
  • Battery/performance: 4/5

Overall rating: 3.8/5

Where to buy the Lenovo P12 Pro 

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