zebra l10 xslate product review

Zebra L10 XSLATE is one of the three models available in the company’s latest L10 series of smart devices. It’s designed to meet the needs of workers in the construction, telecommunications, mining, energy, and public safety industries. Praised for its durability and connectivity, this device is also known for its array of performance-boosting accessories.

This article explores just how powerful Zebra L10 XSLATE is and whether it’s the best bang for your buck.

Our Verdict

Equipment Check with Zebra L10 XSlate

This ruggedized, feature-packed tablet comes with plenty of accessories allowing it to cater to different industries. Suitable for work under extreme conditions, it’s certainly worth considering for most manufacturing and warehouse uses.

However, the overall performance is only good, and the high dependence on accessories makes this device less convenient for everyday use compared to competitors. Also, it has average color accuracy, graphics performance, and medium to strong backlight bleeding, which don’t affect daily workloads, but all are certainly avoidable with other models.

Because of the average performance and moderate graphics, our score for the device is 5.5 out of 10.

Zebra L10 XSLATE Pros

  • Fully rugged device
  • Solid battery life
  • Three-year warranty
  • Lots of connectivity options
  • Quiet fan noise
  • Robust accessories

Zebra L10 XSLATE Cons

  • It doesn’t run on the latest OS
  • Speakers not so loud
  • Restricted color space
  • Hard to access HDMI
  • Average camera performance in low light
  • It doesn’t support USB-C charging
  • Weak graphics
  • Moderate to heavy backlight bleeding
  • It doesn’t support barcode scanning

Specifications

Zebra L10 XSlate Warehouse Workers

Zebra L10 series include the XSLATE L10, XBOOK L10, and XPAD L10 tablets. The XSLATE L10 has a reinforced traditional tablet look and is something like a consumer tablet repurposed for industrial use. What makes this device stand out from the competitors is its incredibly bright display and the fact that it’s a part of the Xplore L10 ecosystem that offers plenty of customization options and features.

The device doesn’t differ much in looks from its predecessors, but it does come with more powerful specs. The “Kaby Lake Refresh” Core processor makes sure any fieldwork is done with ease. There’s also a lower-end Intel Pentium version for less complex work.

The L10 XSLATE has a stable battery life, customizable memory, processor, OS models, and a relatively wide operating temperature.

Overall, it’s nothing we haven’t seen before, but there are some noteworthy specs. Here’s the overview of the top 15 most notable features of Zebra L10 XSLATE.

Size11 in. x 7.7 in x 0.88 in.
WeightWindows 2.8lbs., Android 2.7 lbs.
Display10.1 in. 2K res.
Display TypeCapacitive
BatteryStandard battery 36WHr, up to 10hr run-time
DurabilityMIL-STD-810G, MIL-STD-416F (Windows), IP65, C1D2
CPUIntel i7, i5, and Pentium or Qualcomm Snapdragon 660
ConnectivityNFC, 4G LTE, Wi-Fi, GNSS, Bluetooth
4GYes
SecurityFingerprint reader, Trusted Platform Module 2.0 Optional CAC
WarrantyThree years
Memory4GB, 8GB, 16GB
Storage64GB, 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
Operating temperature-4° F to 140° F
AudioOne rear-facing speaker

Operating Systems and Memory

Zebra L10 XSlate in Warehouse

The Zebra L10 XSLATE is available in the Windows and Android versions, with no difference in terms of design. The main difference is in the processor type and memory. The Android comes with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 processor and is available in 4GB/64GB or 128GB eMMC and the 8GB/128GB eMMC.

The Windows version, on the other hand, is more customizable in terms of memory. It comes in 4GB, 8GB, and 16GB RAM and 64 GB, 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB, or 1 TB storage options. As for the processor, it runs on Intel’s i7, i5, and Pentium solutions. Overall, this model functions as a fully configured PC in the form of a rugged tablet. It has a detachable keyboard (like the Android version) that runs on all Google Workspace apps and similar programs.

Most people that choose the Android version do so because their personal device runs on this OS, so there’s no learning curve. Also, it runs on the Android 10 version, but it’s upgradable to an Android 11.

Both the Windows and Android versions have enhanced security options and feature a fingerprint scanner on the side of the device.

Performance

The XSLATE Windows model comes with four processor options:

  • Intel Core i7-8650U (1.90 GHz), i5-8350U (1.70 GHz), and i5-8250U (1.60 GHz)
  • Intel Pentium (1.1 GHz)

The Intel Core models run on UHD Graphics 620 and have a base speed of 300 MHz. They come with four cores and eight threads. The Intel Pentium version has an HD Graphics 505 and a graphics base speed of 200MHz. It has four cores and four threads. The Intel processors perform fairly well in performance tests and are more robust than the Zebra L10’s predecessor, B10.

The Zebra L10 XSLATE Android version comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 octa-core 2.2. GHz processor and a Qualcomm Adreno 512 GPU graphics card. The Ardeno GPUs are known for handling high graphics-intensive apps without a problem, so you can multitask between presentations, productivity apps, or even AutoCAD for mobiles without a glitch.

Display and Ruggedness

using tablet on forklift

The L10 series comes with a 10.1 inch Gorilla Glass 3 display that’s sunlight-readable but works just as well in the dark. It comes in 1200p resolution, which is the device’s primary attribute. There’s an extremely bright 1000-nit backlight for easy outdoor readability, making this tablet among the brightest ones on the market.

The 1000:1 contrast allows for a sharp content viewing with moderate grains due to a matte overlay. Consumer tablets come with more colorful displays thanks to glossy overlays and thinner levels of Gorilla Glass protection.

The extremely high brightness does come with its drawbacks. Users can notice extensive backlight bleeding around the corners and edges. This becomes visible when using an app with darker borders like DOS. Also, the panel backlight shows pulse-width modulation for almost all brightness levels (up to 99%.) If you’re sensitive to flickering, it’s not recommended to use the L10 for too long.

The display has a projected capacitive touch, like all consumer smartphones. You can tap, pan, pinch, and zoom, much like on any iPhone or iPad. The capacitive touch doesn’t perform well on wet screens and with gloves on. However, the L10 XSLATE has an automatic feature that switches the modes and allows users to use the screen with gloves on.

Even with the automatic mode switching feature, the touch sensitivity decreases significantly when used in wet conditions. Users shouldn’t expect perfection in these modes, and they’re certainly not made for precision-seeking operations.

The ruggedness is at the core of Xplore’s design. It comes with a high-quality and functional industrial design. Testing shows the device can be dropped from four feet, which is pretty much the maximum height at which the items are usually tested. It can survive a total of 26 drops on any surface, edge, or corner without affecting the running time.

The device is sealed with IP65 protection, meaning it’s dustproof and waterproof. By waterproof, we mean it handles low-pressure water jets from different directions. Due to a wide range of operating temperatures (from -4F up to 140F), it can make it to any deployment.

Data Capture and Compatible Software

Construction Workers using Zebra L10 XSlate

When it comes to data capture, the device is packed with a 13 MP rear and 2 MP front camera, an optional NFC, and an optional Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) reader. There’s also an optional barcode scanner but only with the XPAD version. This means you can’t use the L10 XSLATE to scan 1D or 2D barcodes.

Compared to its competitor, Sonim RS80, the XSLATE performs rather poorly in data capture features. Most of them are optional and include special equipment, while the RS80 has built-in tools and scanners.

Connectivity

As for connectivity, the device has a LAN port, two full-size USB ports, a 3.5 mm audio jack, USB-C, and a micro-SDXC card slot. There’s a button that secures the ports behind the locks when not being used. Liquids spilled over the device won’t make it any further than the surface.

The SD card reader can transfer around 1GB of images from the card to the desktop in approximately 16 seconds. This doesn’t even come close to the speed of tablet competitors from Dell or Panasonic that can transfer the files up to three times faster.

Also, it’s important to note that charging the device via USB-C isn’t possible because the tablet runs on a proprietary AC adapter.

Review of Design and Aesthetic

Zebra L10 XSlate Construction Work

Let’s face it – L10 isn’t built for aesthetic purposes. Its rugged design outer shell is made for rough environments. The magnesium frame is enclosed with a rugged casing, making the device suitable for most warehouses, construction sites, and similar tough work conditions. It’s even designed to fight condensation. The tablet is 11.1 x 7.7 x 0.85 inches in size.

The left side has the heat exchanger slots and an I/O block with a protective door. The I/O block features the audio jack, two USB 3.0 ports, a USB-C, and a micro SDXC slot.

The right side features the power switch, a security button, and volume controls. The bottom right hosts a protective door with power and LAN jacks.

The new L10 XSLATE is virtually the same in design as its predecessor, B10. There’s no difference when looking at the device from the top, bottom, and front. However, the new version has a 16:10 display aspect ratio compared to the 16:9 of the B10. Also, the B10’s carbon fiber bezel gives way to a dark gray hue across the device.

Camera

The Zebra L10 XSLATE comes with one front and one back camera. The front one has 2MP, while the rear has 13MP. Video calling offers decent image quality for workers to get clear on-site help in case they need it.

The tablet’s camera is pretty much on par with average consumer smartphones. The primary purpose of the camera is data capture, and this model does a fair job in this regard. You can record decent-quality files and documentation without having to use your smartphone.

The camera app, however, is pretty basic and doesn’t leave much room for photo editing. To do so, users need to rely on third-party apps.

Battery Life and Power Options

Taking inventory with Zebra L10 XSlate

The L10 XSLATE’s standard battery requires 2.75 hours to charge with the system off and lasts up to 10 hours. The extended battery needs 3.25 hours of charging time, and it can last up to 27 hours. The standard bridge battery has one minute swap time, and the swap feature has a standard input voltage of 12-20V and an AC adapter of 19V.

Batteries are hot-swappable, making it straightforward to change dying batteries without affecting the running time of the device.

L10 XSLATE is pretty energy efficient. It uses less power than some of its predecessors that were also weaker. However, using the device in full brightness certainly drains out the battery much faster. Depending on the brightness levels, the device draws from 3 W and 11 W when idle on the desktop. The powerful backlight can speed up consumption by 8 W, while maximum loads use around 18 W.

Accessories

Just one look at Zebra’s accessories list shows how extensive they are. Some of the featured accessories contribute to the extended battery life, provide docking solutions that transfer the device into a desktop configuration, and much more. The battery pack extends the working time up to three times. You can also find a battery kickstand for changing the viewing angle.

Here’s a list of the most notable accessories you can get for the Zebra L10 XSLATE:

  • Vehicle dock
  • Industrial dock
  • Office dock
  • Standard or extended batteries
  • Power adapters
  • Companion keyboard
  • Soft handle
  • Shoulder strap
  • Screen protectors
  • Screen cleaning cloth

Similar Devices

Rugged Tablet Sonim RS80 at Warehouse

Overall, L10 XSLATE is an average tablet that stands out with its ruggedness and high-brightness display. However, if you’re looking for a highly functional device that doesn’t require additional accessories for barcode scanning and other enhanced data capture features, you may want to consider a different model.

The Getac T800 has a 1D/2D optional scanner add-on, but utilizes its Windows operating system to bring you the very best software for your business. It is rugged (MIL 810H and IP65 certification) and built to withstand drops up to 6ft on concrete or steel surfaces.

The T800 also has a Warm-Swap battery; you can switch the battery without powering down the device, making it functional through multiple work shifts. Retailing at a slightly lower price than the Zebra L10 XSLATE, the Getac T800 gives a very similar (dare we say better?) device, for a hefty price break.

Get a Bulk Quote

If you’re interested in purchasing Zebra L10 XSLATE or the Getac T800, we’ve got you covered. Here at Energy Electronics, we distribute the best communication devices in bulk and can advise you on the best solutions to fit your needs. Contact us for your free quote, delivered within one business hour.