Nokia’s first tablet, the Nokia T20 is a refreshing, albeit late, take on a popular and much sought after form factor for connected devices.

The delightfully built 10.4-inch tab boasts a minimalist design measuring 9.75 inches in length, 6.20 inches in width and just 0.31 inches in height. If a user has a sizable enough hand, the tab can be held in one hand vertically when playing back media or while reading. The same applies when the T20 is held horizontally. Weighing in at just under 480 grams, (465 grams for the Wi-Fi only and 470 grams for the LTE version) single-hand use is not a strenuous affair.

In keeping with the minimalist layout of the T20, the device’ buttons are practically but aesthetically placed around the device making them easy to reach. The T20’s power button sits at the top right side of the tab, or the top-left edge depending on the orientation. This edge also features one pair of stereo speakers with OZO Playback for an immersive listening experience that balances out the treble, mid-tones and bass that’s good enough not to need the isolation that headphones provide. The other pair of stereo speakers are located on the opposite edge. The speakers here sit just above or to the right of the USB Type C charging slot, to the left of which sits the 3.5mm audio jack slot.

The volume rocker is situated on the upper-right edge or just to the left side of the top edge, again, depending on the device’s orientation at the time of use. This edge also features the sim tray and a pair of microphones for sound input. This edge unlike the other three features a plastic strip running from top to bottom, or from left to right. This is where the LTE and Wi-Fi antennas are located thus the choice of plastic enables ease of connectivity by preventing signal blockage which is common with aluminium builds.

The T20’s 10.4-inch monolithic scratch-resistant screen has a 5-megapixel front-facing camera and light sensor to the side of it for company. These are contained in a bezel all around the screen that gives the T20 a 78.9 per cent screen-to-body ratio. Media playback output is 1200 by 2000 pixels resolution. This translates to a 5:3 aspect ratio with a pixel per inch density of approximately 224.

In summary, the device delivers a 2K picture resolution. Not as crisp as the higher 4K resolution, but remarkable nonetheless for an entry-level tablet. The main camera, an 8-megapixel shooter, is located on the top left side of the back of the tab. It has a flash beneath and is capable of capturing video at 30 frames per second of up to 1080 progressive scan resolution.

Beneath the sandblasted matte aluminium and toughened glass exterior of the T20 is an octa-core central processing unit featuring a pair of 1.8 GHz Cortex-A75 processors and three more pairs of the 1.8 GHz Cortex-A55 variant processors. These are backed up by a Mali-G52 MP2 graphic processing unit. To ensure efficient data management between the aforementioned, the T20 deploys a Unisoc T610 chipset. And to take full advantage of the above components, the T20 comes pre-installed with the Android 11operating system.

In the anticipated lifespan of the T20, there are to be two years of operating system upgrades and three years of security patchwork, all from the date of manufacture. This is important to note and will be expounded on further below.

The tablet runs on an 8200 mAh non-removable battery that has an out-of-the-box standby time of 36 hours, paired with a 15 Watt fast-charging brick.

For storage, the T20 comes in two options; 3GB RAM and 32GB ROM, and 4GB RAM and 64GB ROM. Both versions offer the option of expandable memory with a dedicated micro SDXC card slot.

Other bells and whistles that the T20 offers include an 802.11 dual-band Wi-Fi antenna, an accelerometer for when switching between portrait and landscape orientations, A2DP 5.0 Bluetooth that should pair seamlessly with most devices in the range. The tab also has FM radio capability. Only the LTE variant has GPS built into it, while neither the LTE nor the Wi-Fi variants offer Near Field Communication connectivity.

Part of the marketing material that the T20 was released with states that it is good for work, play and learning. As such, for a single user, the Google accounts compatibility offers access to free and purchased apps from the Google Playstore. Accounts for additional users can be created in the event that it’s a shared device. For the Kids Space, a new user account that is unrestricted has to first be created before a profile for the child or teen is that created with parental control. This aids in limiting screen time and access to content harmful to minors.

The tab also features the Google Entertainment space, a tablet version of the Google TV entertainment space. With the tab version, however, books and games are included and other subscription services from Google can be integrated.

For added security, the T20 has a face scanner for unlocking as opposed to the standard fingerprint scanner that many devices in the same category come with. The face scanner unlocking is a hit-or-miss over the course of usage so one has to adjust the tab in relation to the ambient lighting for best results. The pin locking however is consistent in use and serves the function of offering user security.

On matters of security, the tab is expected to receive three years of security updates and two years of Android operating system updates as mentioned above. The T20 was announced in October of 2021 and released the month after, so the update counter started ticking then.

Looking back at Nokia’s re-entry into the smartphone space in 2016 after a decline in dominance and eventual sale to Microsoft who later ceased operations of the brand that evolved from Nokia Lumia to just Lumia, the new holder of the license to brand smartphones and tables, HMD Global, acquired the license in 2016. They were set to hold it for 10 years, a period which will mature in 2026. Most of Nokia’s current devices will run updates up until 2024. And with no official word on a renewal of the license, it is speculative to say that Nokia might not be in existence beyond 2027.

All in all, the Nokia T20 is a great tab and offers great performance within reason considering its price tag of just under Ksh30,000.