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Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 review: software malfunction

AndroidPIT xiaomi mi pad 2 windows 10 4
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The Xiaomi Mi Pad 2, a compact tablet, intended to provide a cheap alternative to the iPad Mini 2, comes in Android and Windows 10 flavors. Here we take a look at the Windows 10 version, which, as it turns out, has a few problems. Find out how the Mi Pad 2 stands up to some close scrutiny.

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2


  • Premium finish
  • Good display quality


  • Serious software issues
  • Poor camera quality
Xiaomi Mi Pad 2
Xiaomi Mi Pad 2
Xiaomi Mi Pad 2: All deals

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 release date and price

The Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 has not seen an official US release, but it can be purchased through GearBest. The company is hosting a flash sale on Monday, June 13, where you can get a discount on the Mi Pad 2. For the 64 GB Windows 10 model that we tested, the price is $249.89 plus shipping. The 16 GB Android version is going for about $199.99. 

The device closely mirrors the iPad Mini 2, which currently retails for upwards of $399. Its Android counterparts would be the Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact and the Nvidia Shield Tablet K1.

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 design and build quality

The Mi Pad 2 offers a surprisingly premium finish. The tablet has a full-glass front and full-metal rear. It closely resembles the iPad Mini in design and dimensions, but it lacks the familiar Apple home button.

On the top left of the frame, there's the 3.5-mm input jack for headphones. On the right side, near the top, there's the volume rocker and power button. On the base of the frame, you'll find a USB Type-C port. A pair of speaker grills are placed on the tablet's rear panel, providing stereo sound.

AndroidPIT xiaomi mi pad 2 windows 10 6
The finish is great for a device of this price. / © NextPit

Sizing in at 200.4 x 132.6 x 7 mm and weighing 322 g, the tablet is marginally thinner and lighter than the iPad Mini 2, but larger and heavier than Sony's 8-inch Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact.

All together, the Mi Pad 2 offers a sleek finish that belies its price point. It's a very attractive device.

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 display

The Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 comes with a 7.9-inch IPS LCD display with 2,048 x 1,536 pixel resolution. mimicking the specs of the iPad Mini 2. This resolution and screen size results in a very respectable 326 ppi. It's a crisp and clear display, prime for media viewing, and its brightness makes it readable in all but direct sunlight.

AndroidPIT xiaomi mi pad 2 windows 10 4
The colors are crisp and the brightness more than adequate. / © NextPit

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 software

The Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 that we tested was running Windows 10. It didn't appear to be the mobile version, but the full version instead. While Microsoft has optimized this software for tablets, and the Mi Pad 2 packs an Intel Atom X5-Z8500 processor, I experienced problems every time I used the Mi Pad 2.

Sometimes, the on-screen volume slider would not disappear, even after restarting. Pressing on apps in the apps list would do nothing. Dragging an app to the home screen and pressing on it would do nothing. Pressing on it enough times would freeze the device.

I installed Sniper Fury to try out the gaming performance, but could not get past the first screen, which asked me to enter my age, as no keyboard appeared when I pressed on the input box. This is a setting, it turns out, that has to changed, which only proves how poorly the software is set up. Even after I'd changed the setting, the keyboard would only appear when it felt like it, which was not often.

androidpit xiaomi mi pad 2 software screenshot 1
Not only is the window the wrong size, pressing on the input field produced no on-screen keyboard. / © ANDROIDPIT

Screen rotation was laggy and often resulted in an incorrectly sized window or assorted weird things happening. Dialogue boxes that appeared in Google Chrome could not be pressed on; I couldn't even switch between tabs at times. The list of bugs goes on and on.

All in all, the device was nigh-on unusable. I managed to play some solitaire, but even here the sound glitched and performance was poor. If this is placed in competition with the iPad 2 Mini, the software simply doesn't compare. iOS is streamlined to such an extent that Windows 10 here looks like an amateur effort.

Suffice to say, if I had paid for this device, I would have returned it by now.

Our German team reviewed the Android version of this device and also encountered a variety of problems, but fewer than I did, so if you're looking at purchasing this tablet, it would be wise to consider opting for the Android version, instead.

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 performance

Outside of the appalling software, the device's specs and performance are decent. In 3D Mark's Ice Storm Extreme benchmark, the device pulled in on average 13,550 points. While this isn't too bad, it's a test that the Nvidia Shield Tablet K1 comfortably maxes out on – meaning it hits the vertical sync limit and the benchmark is too low-end for the device.

androidpit xiaomi mi pad 2 3d mark benchmark score 1
The 3D Mark benchmark results rarely fell below 13,000, but it's still not as good as the Nvidia Shield Tablet K1. / © ANDROIDPIT

Assuming you can get past the first screen of a game, and it doesn't crash at some point soon after, the graphics performance is adequate for the price range, but ultimately outranked by the superior gaming experience on offer on the Nvidia Shield Tablet K1, which is both more readily available and cheaper to buy than the Mi Pad 2 that we tested.

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 audio

The stereo speakers, placed on the rear of the tablet, provide decent sound quality for watching videos and playing games. Their placement means that, when watching videos in landscape mode, the audio might as well be in mono, however. The device does not come with headphones.

AndroidPIT xiaomi mi pad 2 windows 10 2
Stereo sound, but a slightly awkward placement. / © NextPit

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 camera

The camera set up is pretty poor in all but the most forgiving circumstances. Images always appear pale, and very well-lit conditions are necessary to get a decent picture.

androidpit xiaomi mi pad 2 camera sample 4
This is the best image quality you will get out of the Mi Pad 2. / © ANDROIDPIT

The rear camera is 8 MP and doesn't have optical image stabilization, meaning any images taken too quickly will be very blurry. In low-light conditions there is a lot of noise and detail quality is very poor.

The front-facing camera is 5 MP and is fine for little else besides a Skype call. 

AndroidPIT xiaomi mi pad 2 windows 10 3
The rear camera is 8 MP and takes subpar photos. / © NextPit

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 battery

The Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 carries a 6,190-mAh non-removable battery. The USB Type-C connector can get the tablet fully charged in under three hours. I managed to get between six and seven hours of screen-on time out of it, while watching videos and playing games, which is acceptable but not impressive.

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 technical specifications

Final verdict

The device looks high-end and feels great in the hand. The screen is bright and crisp. Superficially, it's a decent device. The poorly optimized software, however, renders the tablet unusable. It lags, glitches and freezes so regularly as to make it infuriating. For this reason, I cannot recommend the Mi Pad 2. The device I had felt like a decent tablet loaded up with untested software that is not fit for everyday use.

Xiaomi Mi Pad 2 - where to buy?


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Chris Marshall

Chris Marshall
Junior Editor

Chris is a graduate in English and Philosophy and habitual tamperer with technology. A recent convert to Android, through the marvel of the Samsung Galaxy S6, he looks to share the fruits of this technological honeymoon through AndroidPIT.

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  • CHA 1
    CHA Oct 2, 2016 Link to comment

    Purchased a MiPad 2 (Windows 10 version) from AliExpress. Upon receipt, I was immediately impressed by the build quality and the pixel density of its screen. It worked perfected with every peripheral device(i.e. Canon Lide 220 Portable Scanner, Samsung Ultra-Thin DVD burner, Ethernet-USB 3.0 hub, Western Digital 2TB external hard drive, various USB 2.0 and 3.0 flash drives) I connected it to using a USB-Type C OTG adapter. Every piece of software (i.e. Norton Antivirus, Malwarebytes, uTorrent, full version of Microsoft Office, etc.) I installed on it worked perfectly. I downloaded a movie using uTorrent and the Mipad 2's download speed was equal to my desktop computer. The MiPad 2 was performing like a 7.9 inch desktop computer! Then the problems started. Since I routinely attach a USB volt/amp meters whenever I charge a device, I noticed that the MiPad 2 either wasn't charging (0.00A) or was charging at very low rate (i.e. 0.38A). So I wasn't able to get the MiPad 2 fully charged. Then it started to turn on by itself, from being completely powered/turned off. I did a factory reset, in the hope of rectifying this problem. The reset completed but while reinstalling my software, the MiPad 2 died. The only thing working on it was the battery charging LED. I discovered that this is a common problem with the MiPad 2". It's referred to as the "black screen issue". After a day or so of being completely inert, the MiPad 2 came back to life on its own -- but it's now extremely buggy (i.e. touchscreen errors, slow response). The MiPad 2 is a great Window 10 tablet, if and when it's working properly. I'll be returning it to the seller -- at their seller's expense. An unreliable tablet is a useless tablet.

  • 1
    Kumar Jun 16, 2016 Link to comment

    Please review in Android.

  • samarpan bhattarai 1
    samarpan bhattarai Jun 13, 2016 Link to comment

    I have got xiaomi mipad 1 and its a total disaster in terms of software. Dont just see the specs and hardware, software should be good too to accompany those great hardware . Miui is too bad with ram management and in case of mipad one , its worst. There are lots and lots of bugs and no updates .. ipad is ipad ... you will get what you pay for .. dont go with mipad ...

  • Wilson Samiano 2
    Wilson Samiano Jun 13, 2016 Link to comment

    I've had this tablet since March 2016 and I absolutely love it. I hardly use my Surface 3 now because of it. My question is why install a desktop software and pretend that you can play the game without a mouse and keyboard. I only use Windows Store apps mostly in exception of CCleaner which works okay. This review is more of an Android fan bashing on Windows 10 or Microsoft in my opinion. If you read this article please don't let this reviewer changed your mind about this product. It took me three months to get this Xiaomi MiPad 2 because it was always sold out. and was sold out completely and couldn't fill all their orders for months. Its not perfect but so as any iOS devices or Lagdroids. With this device you know you'll get your updates from Microsoft unlike some Alphabet company software. The device is premium and on par with an iPad Mini but for half the price. My only complain with the device is my bought movies from the Store doesn't stream if it has DRM which most of them do. I'm a gadget enthusiast and I've purchased many devices with my own money just to see how they are. So far, Microsoft is the only company I can trust; sort of, in comparison with Google or Apple. Google will take your information and sell it. They refuse to provide support for your Android devices and you must purchase a new one to get security updates. Apple will give you updates but eventually suffer from incompatibility with new apps or blatantly make your devices unusable to entice you on buying new ones. Make your choice! I choose Microsoft because it's what's best right now out of the three evil companies.

    Joaquín Cárdenas

    • Joaquín Cárdenas 1
      Joaquín Cárdenas Sep 27, 2016 Link to comment

      I completely agree with you, we a talking a tablet with full windows 10 which has a lot to improve in the tablet realm but is on it's way. Now, adding to what you allready said: If the writer of these review tires to compare battery life of a win10 tablet with an Android or iOs one you are doing thing wrong. He said 7 hours battery life on a 8 inch Win10 isn't surprising, which tablet can surpase that xD. On my mi pad 2, which i'm running dual boot win10+miui btw, I can use full fledged software such as PS and AutoCAD without any issues, sometimes you need patience but everything in a package this small? I think this tablet desereves more than 2.5 stars...

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