Android hasn’t always been the best when it comes to tablets.
In fact, when the first Android tablet launched in 2010 it was criticised for its lack of apps that took advantage of the larger screen size.
This has now changed, however, with the majority of apps on Google Play having interfaces for both smartphones and tablets, making Android a much more viable option for the tablet wanting consumer.
And so, let’s take a look at some of the best Android tablets currently available.
10. Amazon Kindle Fire HD 7
While it’s now fairly outdated, the Kindle Fire in its prime was an awesome tablet for a lot of people.
It wasn’t for developers or tech geeks by any stretch of the imagination, but it offered a simpler to understand UI and linked in to Amazon making it ideal for newcomers to the smart-tech industry.
Featuring a 7″ screen and a 720p resolution, it’s still able to be used as a fantastic eBook and PDF reader as well as being able to stream HD media such as Netflix and YouTube. You won’t be finding a lot of games that work well on it, but for the casual user this is an ideal device.
The Kindle Fire HD 7 costs £129.99 from Amazon with a whole range of customisation options available via covers and cases.
9. Samsung Galaxy Tab 3
The Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 took the design philosophy of their smartphones and enlarged it. Somehow, it worked.
The Tab 3 looks great and is both thin and lightweight, allowing maximum portability without sacrificing on style. It also features a battery life of 10 hours, meaning that you can take it out during the day without fear that it’ll die when you badly need it.
Featuring an ARM 7100 CPU @ 1.2GHz with 1GB of RAM, it’ll struggle through the more modern games but work just fine with casual web browsing and social media-ing.
This is perfectly excusable at a price of £104.99, however, and so despite being a tad outdated makes it to #9 on this list.
8. Tesco Hudl 2 – Best budget tablet
A tablet labelled “Tesco” instantly brings forth cheap connotations. The Hudl 2, however, is a lot better than you’d think.
While the battery life is poor and the tablet features a horrible launcher custom coded by Tesco, it also has a fantastic screen that exceeds 720p by enough to make a more than noticeable difference, as well as 2GB of RAM and a quad-core CPU for only £90.99.
That’s an insane price for that RAM and that CPU, but somehow the supermarket giant have managed it.
We’re impressed, and that’s why it’s the 8th best tablet for 2015.
7. Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2
That name sure is a mouthful. The Samsung Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 is massive: a whole 12.2″ across.
It also features 3GB of RAM, a display just larger than 1080p, and a beastly battery and CPU.
Sporting TouchWhiz it has the ability to run up to 4 apps side by side at once, making it more of a laptop than a proper tablet. That is, in fact, why it isn’t lower on this list.
The problem is that the design is just too big to be portable and to type on easily. It’s a laptop without the functionality of a full desktop operating system. It’s a shame, because it’s got some groundbreaking specifications.
It costs £324 from PC World, too, so it costs just as much as a proper laptop.
In short: groundbreaking tech, wallet busting price.
6. ASUS MeMO Pad 7 ME572C
Following on from the Nexus 7, ASUS has released several 7″ tablets in the last year, but the ME572C is easily the best of the lot.
Featuring a 1080p display, 2GB of RAM and an Intel Atom processor this is a fantastic contender to the Nexus 7, manufactured by them but released by Google late 2013. The processor is particularly interesting as its x86 architecture rather than ARM and can be found in several entry-level laptops and netbooks.
Where the MeMO Pad really shines, however, is in the design. As the Nexus 7 had the rubbery back, the ME572C has this rubbery material throughout, making it extremely nice to hold and use.
Highly recommended for anyone wanting a 7″ tablet!
5. ASUS Transformer Pad TF103 – Best hybrid tablet
For a while there was a laptop and tablet hybrid craze, and the Transformer Pad series of devices was certainly one of the better products of this period.
Featuring a 720p 10.1″ display, 1GB of RAM and of course a beautifully constructed detachable keyboard at a launch price of £179, the TF103 is both inexpensive and fairly powerful.
No, 720p isn’t a very good resolution and at 10.1″ the keyboard can feel quite cramped, but at this price for a hybrid, you can’t really go wrong. Android works surpsingly well using the keyboard’s built in trackpad while the screen can still be used as a regular Android tablet.
It isn’t the most powerful of devices, but it’s nicely made and fairly priced. If you’re in the market for a hybrid, look no further!
4. Google Nexus 9
The Nexus line of smart devices will have a place in any avid Android fan’s heart.
They aren’t the best for casual consumer, but they’re a thing of beauty for the tech enthusiast who’s looking to see what the following year might bring. The Nexus 9 is no exception in many regards.
Featuring Android 5/Lollipop out of the box, an 8.9 inch screen at 1536×2048, 2GB of RAM and an impressive 6700mAh battery, the 9 is a fantastic entry to this list.
It’s a bit more expensive than previous Nexus devices (as has been the case with the Nexus 6) at £199.99, but for under £200 this is probably the best 9″ tablet that you’re going to get.
The battery will last days at a time and the dual-core CPU will allow you play great looking games without slow down.
3. Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4
Samsung make a few too many tablet lines for them all to be good, so when a good tablet does come around it’s worth talking about.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 features a 2k display, a fingerprint scanner and an octa-core processor. Yep, that’s right, octa-core.
Featuring AMOLED technology, the device delivers some fantastic colours and the deep, true blacks that you’d expect. Quite surprisingly, the camera has been shown some love with 8MP on the rear and an LED flash making it nice to take photos on rather than just “okay” (as has been the case with the majority of tablets).
However, the fingerprint scanner is faulty at best and the cost is £250; not too bad for the specs, but too much for this to be an entirely formidable contendor to other 7″~ tablets.
2. Lenovo YOGA Tablet 2 Pro – Most innovative tablet
This entry is by far the greatest technical achievement of any tablet we’ve seen thus far. It even won an Innovation award at CES for being so ground breaking.
Featuring Android 4.4/KitKat, this 13″ tablet features a quad-HD display, support for 4G/LTE, “JBL front-facing, large-chamber stereo speakers with subwoofer, Wolfson Master HiFI audio processing and Dolby surround sound”, an integrated projector, 32GB of storage with micro-SD support and somehow weighs just 950 grams. Incredible.
Of course, it starts at £449.99, so isn’t exactly a viable option for anyone, really.
Even so, some impressive stuff from Lenovo.
1. Nexus 7 (2013) – Best Android tablet
The number 1 spot on this list goes to the slightly newer Nexus 7, released late 2013.
2013’s 7″ Google tablet comes with a 1080p IPS display, 2GB of RAM and a 3950 mAh battery. It weighs just 290g and, being a Nexus, can be updated to Android 5.0, Lollipop, right out of the box.
This tablet is #1 on this list due it beign a fantastic all-rounder: it can play the latest games, it can stream HD video and media and yet it costs £160. It’s Qi-enabled (wireless charging), features front and back cameras and a battery life that’ll last you a couple days with regular use.
Despite it coming out almost 2 years ago, it’s still a lot better than the majority of tablets released in the last few months and so is highly recommended to anyone looking for a new tablet.