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Hands on: Don’t buy an Android tablet until you see these brand-new TCL NXTPAPER tablets

Published Feb 27th, 2024 10:25AM EST
TCL NXTPAPER 14 Pro hands-on experience at MWC 2024.
Image: Chris Smith, BGR

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About a year ago, I told you I’d buy a TCL NXTPAPER 11 just for the amazing screen. The display feels like paper. There’s no glare, and that’s a great feature to have in a device meant for content consumption. While I haven’t actually bought one, I was very excited to see TCL’s next version of NXTPAPER tech, which is coming to smartphones this year, in addition to tablets.

I got to experience TCL’s new NXTPAPER version 3.0 displays during a briefing ahead of MWC and I walked out very impressed. I’m absolutely convinced these tablets should be at the top of anyone’s list, as long as you’re shopping for an Android tablet. And if you’re looking at the new TCL tablets, you have to see the 2024 NXTPAPER tablets in action.

These are large-screen devices with decent specs that would work very well for entertainment. Whether you’re reading books or comics, watching TV shows, or browsing the web, the NXTPAPER screen tech is impressive.

The TCL Tab 10 NXTPAPER 5G tablet.
The TCL Tab 10 NXTPAPER 5G tablet. Image source: Chris Smith, BGR

The 2024 TCL NXTPAPER tablet lineup includes the Tab 10 NXTPAPER 5G, the NXTPAPER 14, and the NXTPAPER 14 Pro. The first is the first 5G-ready NXTPAPER tablet. It’s a great size for a portable content-consumption device.

The tablet is thin and light, and it feels amazing to hold. The Tab 10 NXTPAPER 5 will also be the first one to hit US markets, launching at some point in the second quarter of 2024 for under $250.

Front and back look at the TCL Tab 10 NXTPAPER 5G.
Front and back look at the TCL Tab 10 NXTPAPER 5G. Image source: TCL

As the price implies, the NXTPAPER tablets aren’t necessarily flagships that can go toe-to-toe against the iPad Pro or Galaxy Tab S tablets. But I wouldn’t rule all of them out.

The NXTPAPER 14 Pro stands out in that regard. It has a massive 14-inch 2K display that’s about as big as a laptop. The 14 Pro also rocks MediaTek’s Dimensity 8020 chip paired with 12GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.

TCL NXTPAPER 14 Pro has a large display with slim symmetrical bezels.
TCL NXTPAPER 14 Pro has a large display with slim symmetrical bezels. Image source: Chris Smith, BGR

Add a 12,000 mAh battery and 33W fast-charging, dual 13-megapixel cameras on the front, a 50-megapixel camera on the back, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2, a quad-speaker system, a fingerprint sensor, and an included T-Pen stylus, and you get a great package.

The TCL NXTPAPER 14 Pro is also rather light at 775 grams and just 7mm thick. It was a pleasure to hold, though I only did it for a few minutes while enjoying that glare-free display.

The same display in e-reader mode.
The same display in e-reader mode. Image source: Chris Smith, BGR

Unlike the Tab 10 NXTPAPER, the 14 models feature a dedicated hardware button on the side that lets you switch NXTPAPER display experiences. You can go to full e-reader mode from the tablet’s settings, which is great for reading. But you could use the tablet in reader mode if that feels more comfortable.

Needless to say, I was hooked on that whole display experience. I care less about the iPad Pro’s upcoming OLED screen than NXTPAPER, though a comparison isn’t exactly fair.

The only problem with the 14 Pro, if you can call it that, is availability. The tablet is available in the Asia-Pacific region right now. It might hit the US in the third quarter of the year, but that’s the best estimate I got from TCL during my experience with the tablet. As for Europe, it might be even later than that.

TCL NXTPAPER 14 Pro: Display, rear cameras,  and display mode button on the side.
TCL NXTPAPER 14 Pro: Display, rear cameras, and display mode button on the side. Image source: TCL

The NXTPAPER 14 Pro will retail for $549, while the 14 variant will cost around $400. The cheaper model gets slightly worse specs across the board. Then again, I don’t think I’d need a Pro experience from a TCL NXTPAPER device. I’d use it just for streaming videos and reading.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.