Review: Alldocube iPlay 50 mini Pro NFE

Review unit provided by Alldocube

The Alldocube iPlay 50 mini Pro NFE is the updated version of the iPlay 50 mini Pro (review) released in late 2023. The only upgrade is there's now support for Widevine L1 to play high-resolution DRM-protected videos from NetFlix, Disney, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video.

The official launch price on AliExpress on 8 Jan 2024 is USD 119. After launch period, price will go up to USD 179 and USD 199 for the model with 128GB and 256GB storage respectively. Both tablets have 8GB RAM and the MediaTek Helio G99 (Octa-core(ARM-A76×2@2.2GHz + ARM-A55×6@2.0GHz).

Bottom line: This is a compact and very portable 8.4-inch tablet with pretty good specs for its price. Overall performance is smooth. Display quality is much better than expected. The main downsides for me is weird placement of the USB-C port at the top, 3.5mm audio jack at the corner, and the hollow-sounding speakers. If you can get this with the launch price of USD 119, it's a terrific deal. If you get it at the normal price, it's a good deal.

Below's the table that compares the various iPlay 50 mini models:

Model iPlay 50 Mini iPlay 50 Mini PRO iPlay 50 Mini PRO NFE
Processor Unisoc T606 (Octa-core(ARM-A75×2@1.6GHz + ARM-A55×6@1.6GHz) MediaTek G99 (Octa-core(ARM-A76×2@2.2GHz + ARM-A55×6@2.0GHz) MediaTek G99 (Octa-core(ARM-A76×2@2.2GHz + ARM-A55×6@2.0GHz)
RAM 4GB 8GB 8GB
Storage 64GB 256GB 128GB, 256GB
Battery capacity 4000 mAh 5000 mAh 5000 mAh
Widevine L1 Yes No Yes
Weight 292g 306g 306g
Price (USD) 129 159 179, 199

I have reviewed both the iPlay 50 mini and iPlay 50 mini Pro, and now the iPlay 50 mini Pro NFE.

My recommendation is to go with the Pro model if you have the budget because you get more RAM, more storage, and the display quality is noticeably better. Whether to get the NFE version comes down to whether you stream videos from those video streaming websites. The price difference between the NFE vs non-NFE isn't huge so it may be worth the money to go with the NFE version.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 202.7 x 126 x 7.5mm
  • Weight: 306g
  • OS: Android 13
  • Chip: MediaTek G99 (Octa-core(ARM-A76×2@2.2GHz + ARM-A55×6@2.0GHz)
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 256GB UFS 2.2
  • MicroSD card slot: Yes
  • Display: 8.4-inch IPS LCD
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1200 (270 PPI)
  • Brightness: 320 nits
  • Front and back camera: 5MP
  • SIM: Dual SIM (one slot shared with microSD card)
  • Connectivity: Wifi, cellular, Bluetooth
  • Widevine L1
  • Port: USB-C
  • 3.5mm jack: Yes
  • Battery capacity: 5000 mAh

Things included


Shown above is the bundle that comes with everything and that's an extra USD 50.

Listed below are the different bundles.

  • Included: USB-A to USB-C charging cable
  • +USD $20: USB-A to USB-C charging cable, USB-C to USB-A adapter, headset, case
  • +USD $40: USB-A to USB-C charging cable, USB-C to USB-A adapter, headset, case, Bluetooth keyboard
  • +USD $40: USB-A to USB-C charging cable, USB-C to USB-A adapter, headset, case, stylus
  • +USD $50: USB-A to USB-C charging cable, USB-C to USB-A adapter, headset, case, Bluetooth keyboard, stylus

Build quality of the tablet is solid and it already comes with a screen protector so you may not need the case. I would highly recommend getting Bluetooth earphones instead, eg. Baseus Bowie M2s which is just USD 25 for a way better audio experience with noise cancelling and wireless convenience.


The pen included is a mesh-tip stylus which works just like a rubber tip stylus. There is no pressure sensitivity or palm rejection. The pen is not really necessary unless you want to write but the writing experience with a bulbous tip is not ideal anyway.


The optional Bluetooth keyboard is sized to pair with 11-inch tablets and not 8.4-inch tablets. The keyboard works fine but feels cheap because it is cheap.


The FN key is at the left corner and WinKey is beside the spacebar.

Design


This 8.4-inch tablet is compact and can be held easily in one hand, even with the case on. The bezels are quite thin although not the thinnest. Corners for the tablet and IPS LCD are rounded off. Design looks good.

There's a 5MP camera in front.

The launcher that I'm using is Nova Launcher because the default launcher is very basic. The tablet runs on Android 13 the custom OS has very limited features. e.g. no auto-brightness.

Display quality is surprisingly good. Colours look vibrant, visuals are quite sharp with 1920 x 1200 resolution on an 8.4-inch display and brightness is high. There's slight glow effect at the top, near the camera, but nothing too distracting.


The back is full metal which is why the build quality is solid. The back camera is 13MP and front one is 5MP.

There is no face unlock or fingerprint unlock unfortunately.

There's dual SIM slot, with one slot shared with microSD. With cellular, you can make calls, send and receive SMS, something even the iPad mini cannot do. This means you can use apps that with SMS verification.


3.5mm headphone jack is located at the corner at the top left, and also at the top is the USB-C charging port, off-centred because of the front camera. There's one speaker on the bottom and audio is loud enough but sounds hollow.

If you use case with the tablet, and your wired earphones has a thick connector, the metal audio jack may not go all the way in due to the thickness of the case.


This tablet now has Widevine L1, a feature that was strangely missing in the previous model. With Widevine L1, you can now play high resolution DRM videos from Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video and other paid video streaming services.

The experience of watching video on this tablet is great because the display quality is good, e.g. sharp, vibrant and bright. You'll just need a good pair of earphones to complete the overall experience.

Gaming is smooth enough if you do not play 3D graphics intensive games.

I don't recommend reading comics with this tablet because font sizes cannot be enlarged in comics and text will look small on an 8.4-inch display

Battery life is around 9-10 hours. Full charge takes 2 hours.

Conclusion

This is pretty good tablet for the price. You get good specs, reasonable quality overall except for the hollow sounding speakers. There's also SIM support so you can also use this as a backup for your phone.

If you're buying this to watch shows, I highly recommend getting good earphones because good audio experience is as important or even more important than visual quality.

Pros and cons at a glance
+ Beautiful design
+ Compact, lightweight, portable
+ Solid build quality
+ 8GB RAM and 128GB or 256GB storage option
+ Vibrant display at its price point
+ Screen protector already applied
+ Sharp visuals with FHD+ resolution on 8.4-inch display
+ Brightness adequate for use in bright environment
+ Wifi and cellular connectivity
+ 3.5mm audio jack
+ Android 13
+ Widevine L1
+ No bloatware
+ Decent smooth performance from entry level processor
+ MicroSD card slot for storage expansion
+ Extremely affordable
+ 5000 mAh battery capacity with 9-10 hours battery life
- Weird placement of 3.5mm audio jack at the corner
- Weird placement of USB-C port at the top
- Screen protector affects image quality slightly
- So-so audio quality from low power speakers
- Alldocube custom UI has limited features
- Not good for graphics intensive games
- No fingerprint or face unlock

Availability
You can find the Alldocube iPlay 50 mini Pro NFE tablet on AliExpress and there should be global shipping included with the price. The tablet is also available on Amazon.de and Amazon US.

does this support active stylus? or can use with Pen tablet ?

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