Finding the Best 10-Inch Tablets

Last Edited: September 12, 2018 by

The best 10-inch tablets

Welcome to our regularly updated and researched list of the best premium 10-inch tablets for your needs based on reviews, retail sales, consumer feedback and hardware performance.

The original ‘slate’ tablet or 10-inch variety of tablets are among the oldest and most iconic tablets and pay tribute to the original 2010 iPad from Apple which opened the tablet market to the masses. Unlike some of our previous cheap tablet guides, this list deals primarily with 10-inch tablets priced over $300 that can handle the heat when to comes to more advanced apps and functionality. Ten inch tablets are particular great for media consumption thanks to their generous screen size and, in many cases, faster processors. We are currently hitting the fourth generation devices and beyond from most leading manufacturers – suffice it to say they have had some time to get their act together and create some well polished pieces of mobile machinery.

While tablets won’t offer a full replacement for your laptop or PC, they’re portability and accessibility make them a sought after accessory for the modern home as the age of connected devices and apps become more and more prominent. If you think you may be happier with something smaller be sure to also check out our best 7-inch tablets and best 8-inch tablets guides, or, if you are looking for a larger tablet or convertible, our best large tablets guide. That said, if you have the budget you may also want to consider a new smartphone instead – our top tier best unlocked smartphones guide over at SmartphoneNinja can assist you in finding a phone that may eliminate your need for a tablet entirely, although in many cases the extra screen real estate present in a 10-inch tablet will make the extra investment more than worth it.

Top Picks >> Runners Up >> Honorable Mentions >>

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Best 10-Inch Tablets – Top Pick

Apple iPad 9.7 inch (2017)

Apple iPad MP2F2LL/A 9.7 inch (2017) tablet

The 2014 iPad Air 2 was recently discontinued, and replaced with the new 2017 iPad 9.7-inch, or simply, “iPad”. Its 2048 x 1536 (264ppi) Retina display has received a lot of praise, but the screen is not laminated to the glass, and therefore more reflective, making viewing a rather strenuous affair at times. Regardless, many found that the screen has retained its responsiveness and the level of detail is gorgeous. Unlike the iPad Pro which is more geared towards productivity and creativity, the 2017 iPad is more suited for general web browsing, watching movies or reading. Still, the A9 chipset with its 64-bit architecture and the 2GB of RAM drives a solid performance and makes multitasking fairly effortless. At 7.5mm thick and with a weight of 469 grams, it is lightweight and weighs around 40 grams more than the new Samsung Galaxy Tab S3. The 32GB of storage space should be enough for most, but there is a 128GB version that is about $100 more. The battery life is around 11 hours according to the folks over Trustedreviews.com, and it takes 3-4 hours to fully charge, which is a bit on the slow side. Apple fans mostly have remained staunch supporters of iOS, because it is easy to use and navigate. The 2017 iPad comes with iOS 10. The rear camera is an 8-MP camera and the front is 1.2MP. It is able to shoot in 1080p and has image stabilization, along with a host of other camera features.

Pros

  • 2048 x 1536 Retina display
  • Great value
  • Solid performance
  • Responsive
  • Battery life

Cons

  • Reflective screen
  • Feels cheap

Specs

  • 2GB DDR4 RAM
  • Internal Storage: 32GB
  • Removable Storage: None
  • Cameras: Front 1.2MP, Rear 8MP
  • 9.70 inches, 2048 x 1536 pixels pixels (IPS)
  • Apple iOS 10
  • 1 lbs

Summary

The 2017 iPad 9.7 inch performs well thanks to its A9 chipset, and the 2048 x 1536 Retina display is gorgeous. However, due to the fact that it has not been laminated to the glass, it can reflect quite a bit of light.

Apple iPad MP2F2LL/A 9.7 inch (2017)
$329.00
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from Amazon.com
(as of 14-11-2018 17:33 UTC) Details

Best 10-Inch Tablets – Runners-Up

 

Samsung Galaxy Tab E 9.6-inch

Samsung Galaxy Tab E SM-T56 9.6-inch tablet

The Samsung Galaxy Tab E is one of the few tablets on the market today that come with 3G support and voice-calling capabilities. Even though the tablet is made of plastic, it has a solid build quality. It is 0.35 inches thick and weighs 1.08 pounds which makes it quite uncomfortable for single-handed use, but is nonetheless remarkable for a tablet with its screen-size. The 9.6-inch TFT display has a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels at a modest 157 ppi pixel density, resulting in poor color accuracy and low clarity. The Galaxy Tab E runs a rather old Android v4.4 KitKat OS with the custom Samsung TouchWiz UI for a user-friendly tablet experience. The multi-window feature common with Samsung tablets works well with applications that support it. Performance offered by a quad-core Spreadtrum SC7730SE clocked at 1.3GHz is decent, and with 1.5GB RAM, expect basic multitasking to be handled with ease. However, the Mali-400 GPU is not powerful enough to play the ever-growing number of high-end tablet games. There is an 8GB flash memory module for storage, which however limited can be expanded through the microSD slot. Perhaps the Galaxy Tab E’s strongest feature is its 5000mAh battery which offers up to 17 hours of endurance with a combination of 3G data, video and music playback.

Pros

  • Excellent build quality
  • Large and bright screen
  • Loud stereo speakers
  • Impressive battery life

Cons

  • Modest performance
  • Poor cameras
  • Non-removable battery

Specs

  • 1.5GB RAM
  • Internal Storage: 16GB
  • Removable Storage: up to 256 GB
  • Cameras: Front 2MP, Rear 5MP
  • 9.6 inch, 1280 x 800 pixels (TN)
  • Android 5.1 Lollipop
  • 1.2 lbs

Summary

The Galaxy Tab E is a well-rounded budget tablet whose solid build, bright screen and long battery life leaves us with an overall favorable impression.

Samsung Galaxy Tab E SM-T56 9.6-inch
$197.89$149.00
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from Amazon.com
(as of 15-11-2018 05:44 UTC) Details

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 9.7-inch

 

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 SM-T820NZKAXAR 9.7-Inch tablet

The Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 9.7-inch tablet has a beautiful all-glass, slim, and lightweight design. Its 2048 x 1536 Quad HD resolution AMOLED display is HDR-ready, a first for tablets. The screen is detailed and HD content is rich and sharp, and while there may not be much HDR content around yet, it is future-proofed at least. The Snapdragon 820 may be from 2016, but the 2.2GHz and 4GB of RAM drives a solid performance, although at this price point, one would have thought that it would include the most up to date chip. The 32GB is fairly slim, but it can be expanded with an extra 256GB microSD card. Samsung has included the S Pen stylus for free, which is an upgraded version from the Note’s version of the S Pen. Most found that the S Pen is easy to hold and incredibly sensitive, making it well suitable for note taking and for creative purposes. This particular version comes without the keyboard cover, which costs quite a bit extra, and according to CNET, the keyboard is an underwhelming performer. Its 6,000mAh battery is larger than the Tab S2 and holds a single charge for around 12 hours. It takes around 3 hours to reach a full charge thanks to its USB-C quick charge. The rear camera is 13MP, while the front is a 5MP camera, and it has 4K video recording. It has quad speakers, which have been tuned by AKG to deliver great audio for a tablet. It comes with Android Nougat installed, so you can expect all the latest features from Android.

Pros

  • Awesome display
  • HDR-ready
  • Performance
  • Quad speakers
  • Good battery life
  • Light design
  • USB-C
  • Fast charge

Cons

  • 2016’s Snapdragon 820
  • Keyboard sold separately
  • No slot for S Pen

Specs

  • 4GB RAM
  • Internal Storage: 32GB
  • Removable Storage: microSD, up to 256 GB (dedicated slot)
  • Cameras: Front 5MP, Rear 13MP
  • 9.70 inches, 2048 x 1536 pixel pixels (TN)
  • Android 7.0 Nougat
  • 0.95 lbs

Summary

The Samsung Tab S3 come with a great S Pen and has awesome AV potential with its razor sharp future-proofed HDR-ready display, but the keyboard sold separately is quite pricey.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 SM-T820NZKAXAR 9.7-Inch
$549.99$442.99
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from Amazon.com
(as of 14-11-2018 17:39 UTC) Details

ASUS ZenPad 3S Z500M

ASUS ZenPad 3S Z500M tablet

For the price, the ASUS ZenPad 3S 10 9.7-inch tablet has some impressive hardware driving it. Boasting a hexa-core MediaTek MT8176 chipset that clocks speeds of up to 2.1GHz, it features snappy performance. The 4GB of RAM is fairly prevalent in higher end tablets, making multitasking a breeze. The 2048×1536 IPS LCD display is sharp and CNET.com have described the colors as more lifelike in comparison to the deep blacks and rich colors of the Samsung displays that creates an almost overly dramatic image. The design is very similar to that of the iPad Pro 9.7 in terms of shape and its adoption of the 4:3 aspect ratio, but based on Amazon reviewers, unlike the iPad Pro 9.7 the quality control is not the best, with many receiving faulty devices upon arrival. It’s diamond-cut edges and metal casing give the Zenpad 3S 10 an elegant look and the fingerprint scanner, which doubles up as the home button, is super responsive. It has capacitive buttons on each side of the home screen/fingerprint scanner – one for back and the other for multitasking. The speakers are on the edge of the screen, with some potential to block them when holding the screen, which could be a bit annoying. But they are otherwise loud and impressive, and ASUS have made use of an NXP Smart AMP to drive the speakers. It makes use of USB-C and its quick charging allows for the 5900mAh battery to charge full in around 2.5 hours. The battery life is around 10 hours according to ASUS, which is more than enough for most users. The camera quality is rather poor, with the 8MP camera and 5MP front camera underperforming. The rear camera also doesn’t come with an LED flash, meaning you cannot take shots in low light at all. It is able to shoot videos in 1080p, but this is reportedly also rather poor. The PowerVR GX6250 allows it to run high-end games with general ease, so it well suited to those who enjoy playing demanding games. It makes use of Android 6.0 and unfortunately comes with quite a bit of bloatware that cannot be removed. The 64GB built in storage is more than enough for the price and it can be expanded to 128GB with its included microSD slot.

Pros

  • Beautiful design
  • Sharp 2K display
  • Well priced
  • Good performance
  • USB-C
  • Quick charging
  • Decent battery life
  • Responsive fingerprint scanner
  • Good speaker quality

Cons

  • Speaker placement
  • Bloatware
  • Potential quality control issues
  • Poor camera quality

Specs

  • 4GB LPDDR3 RAM
  • Internal Storage: 64GB
  • Removable Storage: microSD, up to 256 GB (dedicated slot)
  • Cameras: Front 5MP, Rear 8MP
  • 9.70 inches, 2048 x 1536 pixels pixels (IPS)
  • Android OS 6.0 Marshmallow
  • 0.95 lbs

Summary

If you are not too worried about snapping pics and you are on a tight budget, then the ASUS Zenpad 3S 10 is for you. It offers a top tier performance, a beautiful 2K display and the design is stunning.

ASUS ZenPad 3S Z500M 9.7-inch
$297.99
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from Amazon.com
(as of 14-11-2018 17:36 UTC) Details

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 SM-T580NZKAXAR 10.1-inch 

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 SM-T580NZKAXAR 10.1-inch tablet

Just like its predecessor, the 2015 9.7-inch Galaxy Tab A, the new T580 targets the price-conscious consumer by offering a decent feature package at an acceptable price tag. To keep the device affordable, Samsung opts for a non-flashy look and instead employs an all-plastic case with white and black being the only color choices. The T580 comes equipped with a 10.1-inch TFT display with a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels. Not only is it sharp and colorful, but brightness is also adequate enough for virtually all lighting conditions. The speakers output decent sound volume, and although bass is almost non-existent, the quality is generally commendable. Software-wise, the new Galaxy Tab A sports a relatively up-to-date version of Android, version 6.0.1 Marshmallow. Thankfully Samsung more or less leaves the OS untouched and only includes a few pre-installed apps: S Planner, Kids Mode and Microsoft Office products. Armoured with the fairly new 1.6GHz Exynos 7870 Octa CPU and 2GB RAM, the tablet does pretty well with even demanding tasks and heavy multitasking. The ARM Mali-T830 MP2 GPU offers very good gaming performance as well, even at maximum screen resolution and while 16GB internal storage is rather modest, the T580’s expandable storage capabilities ensure you have enough memory space for your favorite games.  Both the 8MP rear camera and the 2MP front sensor output decent picture quality, but neither are as impressive as the battery, which lasts an excellent 15 hours of Full-HD video playback.

Pros

  • Sturdy design
  • Bright Full-HD display
  • Great performance
  • Android 6.0 Marshmallow
  • MicroSD slot with App2SD
  • Decent cameras
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • Lacks a dedicated standard-sized USB port
  • Only 10.5 GB available storage
  • Weak speakers

Specs

  • 2GB DDR3L RAM
  • Internal Storage: 16GB
  • Removable Storage: microSDXC Card Reader
  • Cameras: Front 2MP, Rear 8MP
  • 10.1 inches, 1920 x 1200 pixels pixels (TN)
  • Android OS 6.0 Marshmallow
  • 1.16 lbs

Summary

Offering the best balance between features and price, the Galaxy Tab A 10.1 is a stellar choice for the budget lovers.

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 SM-T580NZKAXAR 10.1-inch
$279.99$179.00
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from Amazon.com
(as of 15-11-2018 01:52 UTC) Details

 

Apple iPad Air MD785LL/B 9.7-inch

Thanks to its age, the ever brilliant Apple iPad Air now sells at less than $300 and as a result, it has gained significant traction among budget lovers. While you get a beautifully designed, attractive and premium tablet, what Apple really sells here is the light weight, which really makes a difference when using the iPad for long periods of time. The 9.7-inch IPS Retina screen is even more impressive, packing a good 2,048 x 1,536 pixels that result in razor sharp picture and very accurate colors. Viewing angles are wide, and brightness is sufficient, although Apple should have been generous enough to add anti-reflective coating for more comfortable use in the bright outdoors. The speakers are acceptably loud too, especially for a compact tablet such as this one. Performance is offered by the now fairly dated Apple A7 processor and 1GB RAM, which might not seem like much given today’s standards but is more than sufficient in practice. Apps open instantly, and even demanding games run smoothly with decent framerates. Tablet users out there often find it difficult to choose between Android and iOS, and while both have their ups and downs, what really propels iOS to the front is the App Store. With thousands of apps specifically optimized for your large iPad, the experience you get is generally smoother and more enjoyable. The iPad Air ships with iOS 7, but you can upgrade to iOS 10 the second you get it out of the box. The cameras are surprisingly better than most of what we get in this price range and even better is the battery, which manages a cool 10 hours of continuous multimedia use on a single charge.

Pros

  • Robust and premium design
  • Very light and thin
  • Excellent screen quality
  • Decent performance
  • Great iOS app optimization
  • Decent cameras
  • Solid battery life

Cons

  • Non-expandable storage
  • No Touch ID

Specs

  • Apple A33 Cortex A7 1.3GHz
  • 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Internal Storage: 16GB
  • Removable Storage: None
  • Cameras: Front 1.2MP, Rear 5MP
  • 9.70 inches, 2048 x 1536 pixels (IPS)
  • Apple iOS 7
  • 1 lbs

Summary

Diehard iPad enthusiasts might see the 2013 9.7-inch iPad Air as nothing but an old model, but for those of us looking for a bargain, it still remains a premium tablet, but at a not so premium price tag.

Apple iPad Air MD785LL/B 9.7-inch
$329.99$149.99
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from Amazon.com
(as of 14-11-2018 08:20 UTC) Details

Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 9.7-inch

 

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 9.7 is a significant improvement over its predecessor. It has a much slimmer design, more powerful hardware and a wider 4:3 aspect ratio display. Below the screen are two capacitive buttons with a physical home button in the middle similar to an iPad. The home button also works as a fingerprint scanner like the one on the latest Samsung smartphones. The bezels around the front of the tablet are all metal, but the larger portion covering the back is polycarbonate, which gives a cheap feeling but makes the device very light. While similar in build and display size, the S2 feels more solid in hand thanks to its flatter metallic edges as opposed to the curvier metal strip found on the iPad Air. Despite an all-aluminum unibody design on the iPad, the S2 better fits the descriptions of modern day tablet. Users who spend most of their times watching videos and reading ebooks will love the amazing AMOLED panel with a sharp 2048 x 1536-pixel resolution. In terms of brightness, colors and contrast, this display blows competitors like the iPad Air and Surface 3 out of the water. If you peek inside, you will see that the S2 is not all about the looks. It packs an octa-core Exynos 5433 processor and 3GB of RAM. This hardware delivers smooth multitasking performance allowing you to keep multiple tabs open in the browser while streaming YouTube in multi window mode. Most tablets aren’t looked upon as a notebook replacement, but the S2 comes preloaded with Microsoft Office package and has the hardware to deal with basic PC oriented programs. With a Bluetooth keyboard, it can easily turn into a productivity powerhouse. The only drawback is that it has a shorter battery life than most competitors, but as for the rest of the package the S2 is the best 9.7-inch in the market right now.

Pros

  • Solid performance
  • Nice design
  • Thin and lightweight profile

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Average battery life

Specs

  • 3GB SDRAM RAM
  • Internal Storage: 32GB
  • Removable Storage: microSD card reader
  • Cameras: Front 2.1MP, Rear 8MP
  • 9.70 inches, 2048 x 1536 pixels
  • Android 5.0 Lollipop
  • 0.86 lbs

Summary

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 9.7 provides a semi-premium tablet experience and excellent performance and a thin design, although expensive relative to some competitors and it's battery life leaves a lot to be desired.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 9.7-inch
$499.99$347.99
Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 15-11-2018 01:42 UTC) Details

ASUS Zenpad 10 Z300C

 

ASUS ZenPad Z300M-A2-GR 10-inch tablet

The ASUS Zenpad 10 Z300C offers great value for money with its included keyboard dock and respectable performance at a meager price. The Zenpad’s design is purely functional, with a laid-back plastic design on both keyboard and tablet. It remains sturdy, however, and can handle some abuse. The keyboard and tablet have independent batteries. However, this power is not shared, and each has to be charged independently of the other. The screen’s 1280 x 800 resolution is nothing to get excited about, but taking into account the device’s price, the IPS display is plenty bright and colorful. Powered by an Intel Atom processor backed by 2GB of RAM, performance is great on mild tasks and the Android interface is smooth, though ZenUI can get a bit annoying. Gaming is a poor, however, with even light games experiencing lag. Also, the Zenpad 10 won’t soon replace your main photography device as it features subpar cameras, much like we have come to expect from tablets nowadays. However, you can expect the tablet to last about 8 hours during continuous use, this can be stretched out to multiple days if you are a light to moderate user. Very good.

Pros

  • Solid build quality
  • Clear display
  • Front-facing speakers
  • Expandable storage

Cons

  • Poor cameras
  • Display isn’t Full-HD

Specs

  • 2GB RAM
  • Internal Storage: 16GB
  • Removable Storage: supports microSDXC cards up to 128GB
  • Cameras: Front 0.3MP, Rear 2MP
  • 10.1 Inch, 1280 x 800 pixels (IPS)
  • Android OS 6.0 Marshmallow
  • 1.1 lbs

Summary

If money is tight and you want an affordable 10-inch tablet to edit documents, browse the Internet or watch films, the Zenpad 10 features keyboard docking, great front speakers and a nice display.

ASUS ZenPad Z300M-A2-GR 10.1-inch
$179.00
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from Amazon.com
(as of 15-11-2018 07:24 UTC) Details

Lenovo ZA1N0007US Yoga Tab 3

 

Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Plus ZA1N0007US 10.1-inch tablet

The Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Plus is a great option for those looking for a budget tablet that is geared towards entertainment. It has a 10.1-inch QHD 2560X1600 display that has been commended for its clarity and sharpness. The higher end octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 652 drives a admirable performance that has impressed those who own this, and the 3GB of RAM allow for easy multitasking. The 32GB of onboard storage is decent for a tablet being pushed as an entertainment tablet, but it only seems to support FAT32, meaning you are limited 4GB files sizes. People were perplexed as to why it did not support exfat or NTFS, and this was a dealbreaker for many. Some BluRay movies are easily larger than 4GB, so it is rather puzzling. It comes with a kickstand, which allows you to stand it on any surface easily. Many users found that the four front facing JBL speakers are loud and immersive, but some users did report an audible hiss or static noise. Its beefy 9300mAh battery allows for around 15-hours of continuous video playback, and Lenovo even boasts that it can be used as a USB power bank. Lenovo Media cast allows you to wirelessly cast your phone’s screen to the Tablet, or you can simply use the Tablet as portable speaker for your phone. Its IP52 rated splashproof design is pretty neat, but it is obviously not recommended to take it into the shower with you or to deliberately throw water on it to test it. The tablet uses USB Type-C for fast charging and connectivity, and it supports Bluetooth 4.0, WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and LTE. It has a rear 13MP camera and a 5MP front camera.

Pros

  • Great battery life
  • Crisp QHD display
  • Solid performance
  • JBL speakers

Cons

  • Weight
  • Only supports FAT32
  • May have static/hiss noise from speakers

Specs

  • 3GB DDR3 RAM
  • Internal Storage: 32GB
  • Removable Storage: microSD card reader
  • Cameras: Front 5MP, Rear 13MP
  • 10.1 Inch, 2560 x 1600 pixels pixels (IPS)
  • Android OS 6.0 Marshmallow
  • 1.3 lbs

Summary

The Lenovo Tab 3 Plus 10.1-inch tablet has a great battery life and has a lot of potential as an entertainment hub, but the FAT32 only support is rather disappointing.

Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Plus ZA1N0007US 10.1-inch
$299.99$269.99
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from Amazon.com
(as of 14-11-2018 16:54 UTC) Details

NeuTab K1S 10-Inch

NeuTab K1S 10-Inch tablet

The 2018 NeuTab K1S is the successor to the popular budget tablet, the NeuTab K1. Unlike its predecessor, it comes with Android 7.1 Nougat straight out the box, but its specs remain mostly the same. Customers praised its design, finding that it is comfortable to hold, albeit a bit bulky and slightly slippery. While the screen quality is lacking and the colors look washed out according to reviewers, it is a large 10.1-inch display that is perfect for Netflix binges or picture viewing. It’s resolution of 1024×600 is also on the low side, but fortunately text and image quality haven’t really suffered too much due to this. The 1.3Ghz processor and 1GB of RAM deliver an impressive amount of power for a tablet in this price range. It may not compete with powerful components that come with the Apple iPad 9.7-inch or the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3, but it will allow you to comfortably run your essential day-to-day tasks, although you won’t be able to multitask as freely as you could with the pricier, more powerful tablets. While it is geared towards multimedia use, the 16GB of storage is limiting, but fortunately the Micro SD card slot will allow you to expand it by a further 32GB, allowing you to plenty more videos, photos and songs. We have often noticed that customers complain about cheaper tablets not maintaining a reliable Wi-Fi connection. Fortunately, the K1S maintains a stable connection, so you can browse the web, attend to emails, browse social media or stream videos without much frustration. If you are considering getting this tablet for its cameras, then you’d need to look elsewhere. Both the front and back cameras take poor photos and videos. If you are simply looking for a tablet to consume media, then you don’t need to break the bank by buying an expensive tablet that is better suited to complex processes. The NeuTab K1S will solve all your media needs at an affordable price.

Pros

  • Great value
  • Strong performing quad-core 1.3GHz processor
  • Sturdy build quality
  • Reliable Wi-Fi connection
  • Good audio quality

Cons

  • Subpar display
  • Low resolution
  • Slippery in hand
  • Lacking camera quality

Specs

  • 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Internal Storage: 16GB
  • Removable Storage: MicroSD up to 32GB
  • Cameras: Front 2MP, Rear 2MP
  • 10.1 Inch, 1024 x 600 pixels
  • Android 7.0 Nougat
  • 1.3 lbs

Summary

The NeuTab K1S is perfect for all your media needs, delivering a reliable performance at an attractive price. However, it comes with a poor display and the camera quality is bad.

NeuTab K1S 10-Inch
$89.99
Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 14-11-2018 16:40 UTC) Details

10-inch Tablets – Honorable Mentions

 

Microsoft Surface 3 Tablet 10.8-Inch

Microsoft Surface 3 Tablet 10.8-Inch

The 10-inch Surface 3 is Microsoft’s most compact and affordable slate tablet designed for light users who want to experience a streamlined Windows 8.1 hybrid PC and the high-quality design of the more expensive Surface Pro series tablet for $200 less. By running full Windows 8, it addresses the biggest drawback of previous generation of Surface tablets which ran on the stripped down Windows RT operating system. Attached to a separately sold keyboard, it can be converted to a standard laptop, although an entry-level one considering its modest specs. It features a magnesium alloy body attached to a kickstand which can be propped up into three different positions. With a full sized USB 3.0, Bluetooth 4.0 and a card reader, it has enough ports to get by. The quality of construction is on par with the Surface Pro models. Its 10.8-inch touchscreen has a resolution of 1920 x 1280 and an aspect ratio of 3:2. While not the sharpest, it doesn’t look very different from the panels on many high-end tablets. Unlike the high-performance Intel Core i series processors on Pro 3 tablets, it uses an underpowered Quad Core Intel Atom x7 processor. Its base model comes with 2GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. This hardware configuration doesn’t make it an ideal laptop replacement but it can certainly compete with low-end netbooks. Having less power hungry features means the Surface 3 runs longer on battery than the Pro 3. If you need a high-end Windows tablet with great productivity features, the Surface 3 is currently one of our top options but if you are looking for a more powerful laptop replacement you should consider spending extra on the Surface Pro 3.

Pros

  • Sharp display
  • Premium design
  • Sturdy build
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • Performance is weak compared to the Pro version
  • Optional keyboard accessory is expensive

Specs

  • 2GB RAM
  • Internal Storage: 64GB
  • Removable Storage: microSD, microSDHC, microSDXC
  • Cameras: Front 3.5MP, Rear 8MP
  • 10.8 inch, 1920 x 1280 pixels
  • Windows 8.1
  • 1.37 lbs

Summary

The Surface 3 runs a full version of Windows, packs enough power for casual use and has a very long battery life, and it sports the same premium design of the Surface Pro 3 without the hefty price tag.

Microsoft Surface 3 Tablet 10.8-Inch
$499.00
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from Amazon.com
(as of 14-11-2018 10:15 UTC) Details

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Apple iPad Air 2 (2014)

Apple continues to show the world that it has cornered the premium tablet market with its line of devices featuring their latest OS, iOS 8.  The iPad Air 2 features a sleek and stylish design that is thinner than virtually all the competition.  Its relatively lightweight for a tablet pushing 10 inches and easy to hold for extended sessions of mobile gaming or media consumption.  The iPad Air 2 features the latest processor from Apple, the A8X.  This new 64-bit processor combined with it’s 1GB of RAM allow it to load and process apps faster than any of their devices and also allow you to run multiple apps simultaneously with ease.  The iPad line has continued to struggle in the camera department, but the iPad Air 2 seeks to change this with the inclusion of an 8 MP camera that is the perfect substitute for your phone.  However, there is no flash and the front facing camera is still rather weak.  Overall, if you are looking to make a statement with your tablet choice, the Apple iPad Air 2 is the one for you.  The design is elegant and will impress anyone who sees it.  On top of that, it will run all the apps found on Apple’s App Store with ease making it the perfect tablet for both work and play.

Pros

  • Stylish design
  • Fast loading of apps
  • Retina display
  • Decent multitasking capability

Cons

  • iOS 8 limitations
  • Pricier than Android tablets

Specs

  • Apple A8X 1.5GHz
  • 1GB DDR2 RAM
  • Internal Storage: 16GB
  • Removable Storage: None
  • Cameras: Front 1.3MP, Rear 8MP
  • 9.70 inches, 2048 x 1536 pixels (IPS)
  • Apple iOS 8
  • 0.91 lbs

Summary

The iPad Air 2 features powerful specs, an intuitive user interface and access to a large selection of apps in a thin and light package.

Apple iPad Air 2 (2014)
$499.00$349.95
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from Amazon.com
(as of 15-11-2018 01:45 UTC) Details

ASUS Transformer Mini T102HA

 

From a design perspective, the Transformer Mini T102HA is near-perfect. It features a stylish aluminum finish, feels well built and comes with a kickstand which allows you to use the device in a variety of angles. A fingerprint scanner is available for faster unlocking, but we’d have preferred for it to be placed on the tablet’s front or side, rather than the back panel. Around the tablet is a good selection of ports, including a full-sized USB 3.0 port, a micro-USB and a micro-HDMI. A microSD card slot is also available, so you can upgrade the already generous 128GB internal storage space on board. Powered up, the Transformer Mini sports a 10.1-inch IPS touchscreen, with a resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels. Picture quality is decent and colors are vibrant enough for word processing, web browsing and video streaming, However, the sound output from the two tiny speakers is uninspiring, and we recommend a good pair of headphones to fully enjoy music and video. Under the hood, the Mini packs a quad-core Intel Atom X5-Z8350, clocked at 1.44GHz, and 4GB of RAM. Navigating Windows 10 and performing basic operations are easy tasks for the tablet, but it struggles with more demanding apps. Moreover, the low-end Intel HD Graphics 400 GPU limits gaming to only light titles. Even less impressive is the 2-megapixel front camera, which is only acceptable in normal lighting conditions. Thanks to a super-efficient CPU, the T102HA regains its lost glory with a remarkable 15 hour battery life.

Pros

  • Compact and lightweight design
  • Decent screen quality
  • Windows 10 out of the box
  • Generous 128GB internal storage
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • Underpowered
  • Weak audio output

Specs

  • Intel Atom X5-Z8350 1.44GHz [View Benchmarks]
  • 4GB DDR3 RAM
  • Internal Storage: 128GB
  • Removable Storage: MicroSD
  • Cameras: Front 2MP
  • 10.1 Inch, 1280 x 800 pixels (IPS)
  • Windows 10
  • 1.7 lbs

Summary

The ASUS Transformer Mini T102HA holds plenty to like for customers looking to buy a small, compact laptop replacement for general work or study.

ASUS Transformer Mini T102HA 10.1-inch
$399.00
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from Amazon.com
(as of 15-11-2018 02:11 UTC) Details

Final Words

Full size slate tablets may not have the portability of their mini brethren but they are still some of the very best tablets available and many would say offer the original tablet experience. Contenders such as the iPad offer unparalleled design finesse whereas top contenders from Android and Google have vast feature sets and cutting edge tools to help make your life easier. That said, it is still worth giving the best 7 inch tablets and the best 8 inch tablets a browse if you find their compact form appealing.

At the end of the day the best tablet for you will depend on your style and your budget.

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