The Best Tablets You Can Buy in 2023
September 29, 2023
Tablets have become an essential part of our daily lives, whether for work, entertainment, or gaming. With a plethora of options available in the market, choosing the right one can be daunting. Here, we’ve rounded up some of the best tablets of 2023 to cater to various needs.
Apple iPad Air (2022) – Best for Creators and Students
The 2022 iPad Air, priced at $599, is a blend of Apple‘s signature style and powerful performance, earning accolades including the Editors’ Choice award from PCMag.
- Performance: Powered by the M1 chip, it’s competitive with the 2021 iPad Pro and some M1-based Macs.
- Display: Features a 10.9-inch LCD with 500 nits of brightness and Apple’s True Tone color management.
- Design: Slim at 9.74 by 7.02 by 0.24 inches, available in five matte aluminum colors.
- Storage: Base model has 64GB, with an option to upgrade to 256GB. iCloud+ subscription available for cloud storage.
- Apple Pencil: Supports the improved second-generation Apple Pencil.
- Accessories: Compatible with Apple’s keyboard cases, including the Magic Keyboard With Trackpad.
- Connectivity: Offers 4G and 5G options for those needing cellular connectivity.
Apple iPad (10th Generation, 2022) – Best for Most People
The 10th generation iPad is Apple’s entry-level tablet for 2022. With a starting price of $449, it offers a fresh design, enhanced specs, and several notable changes. While the price increase might be a concern for some, its capabilities make it a top choice in the sub-$500 tablet category, retaining the Editors’ Choice award from PCMag.
- Design: The new iPad adopts a modern look, reminiscent of the iPad Air and iPad Pro, with an edge-to-edge display and no Home button. It’s lightweight, measuring 9.79 x 7.07 x 0.28 inches and weighing 1.05 pounds.
- Display: The screen is a 10.9-inch Liquid Retina display with a resolution of 2,360 by 1,640 pixels, maintaining a pixel density of 264ppi. It offers up to 500 nits of brightness and features like True Tone white balance correction.
- Performance: Powered by the A14 Bionic chip, it promises smooth performance for various tasks, from browsing to gaming.
- Connectivity: One significant change is the shift from the proprietary Lightning port to the more universal USB-C, aligning it with other modern devices.
- Camera: The 10th-gen iPad features a 12MP front camera with a 122-degree FOV, suitable for video calls and casual photography.
Apple iPad mini (2021) – Best Small iPad
The sixth-generation iPad mini has undergone a significant transformation, aligning more with Apple’s premium iPad Pro design. With the powerful A15 chipset, which also powers the iPhone 13 Pro, and a starting price of $499, it offers double the storage of its predecessor and supports the second-generation Apple Pencil. While the base model iPad remains a top choice for many, the iPad mini stands out for those seeking a compact yet potent tablet.
- Design: The iPad mini showcases a Pro-style design with an attractive aluminum enclosure. It measures 7.7 by 5.3 by 0.3 inches and weighs just 10.4 ounces, making it comfortable for extended use.
- Display: It features an 8.3-inch, 2,226-by-1,488-pixel display. This anti-reflective, laminated LCD is bright enough for outdoor visibility. While it doesn’t have the 120Hz ProMotion display of pricier iPad Pro models, its 60Hz refresh rate still offers a smooth experience.
- Performance: The iPad mini is powered by the Apple A15 Bionic chipset, ensuring swift performance for a range of tasks.
- Connectivity: A significant shift from the Lightning port to USB-C ensures compatibility with modern devices.
- Camera: It boasts a 12MP front camera with a 122-degree FOV, making it suitable for video calls and casual snaps.
Amazon Fire HD 10 (2021) – Best Budget Tablet
The 2021 version of Amazon’s Fire HD 10 is designed primarily for content consumption, web browsing, and smart-home management. While it doesn’t compete directly with general-purpose tablets like Apple’s iPad due to Amazon’s limited app selection, it stands out for its affordability and performance. Priced at $150, the Fire HD 10 is PCMag’s Editors’ Choice among sub-$200 tablets.
- Design: Made of matte plastic, it’s available in black, blue, green, or pink. It measures 9.73 by 6.53 by 0.36 inches and weighs 16.4 ounces.
- Display: The tablet features a 10.1-inch, 1920-by-1200, 224ppi screen. While not the brightest, it offers deep colors when viewed head-on.
- Performance: The Fire HD 10 is equipped with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of storage in the base model. It’s designed for content consumption, with a focus on Amazon’s ecosystem.
- Connectivity: It has a USB-C port for charging and transferring files, and a microSD memory card slot for additional storage.
- Camera: The tablet comes with a 5MP rear camera and a 2MP front camera. While the rear camera’s quality is modest, the front camera is suitable for video calls.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra – Best Large Android Tablet
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra is a behemoth in the tablet world, boasting a massive 14.6-inch display. It’s designed to compete with the likes of Apple’s iPad Pro, offering a combination of size, power, and versatility. With a starting price of $1,099, it’s one of the priciest tablets from Samsung but offers a plethora of features that justify its cost.
- Design: The Tab S8 Ultra is large but surprisingly thin, measuring 12.85 x 8.21 x 0.22 inches. It weighs 1.04 pounds, making it comfortable to hold with two hands. The tablet comes in a graphite color and has a sleek design reminiscent of Samsung’s flagship devices.
- Display: The tablet features a 14.6-inch, 2960×1848, 120Hz AMOLED display. It’s bright, vibrant, and perfect for content consumption, from movies to games. The 120Hz refresh rate ensures smooth scrolling and quick app launches.
- Performance: The Tab S8 Ultra is powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, ensuring top-tier performance for various tasks.
- Connectivity: The tablet includes a USB-C port, microSD card slot, and two speakers at the bottom. It lacks a headphone jack, so users will need to rely on USB-C or Bluetooth for audio.
- Camera: While the exact specifications of the camera were not detailed in the provided content, the tablet does come equipped with rear-facing cameras and a magnetic strip to hold the S Pen.
Microsoft Surface Pro 8 – Best 2-in-1 Windows Tablet
The Microsoft Surface Pro 8 is a significant leap from its predecessor, introducing a fresh design with a larger display. It retains the essence of the Surface Pro line, blending the functionalities of a tablet and a laptop. With a starting price of $1,099.99, it’s positioned as a premium device, offering a combination of design and performance that makes it a top choice among Windows tablets. The Surface Pro 8 has been recognized as an Editors’ Choice winner among Windows tablets by PCMag.
- Design: The Surface Pro 8 showcases a sleeker chassis, with thin bezels and a 13-inch screen. It measures 0.37 by 11.3 by 8.2 inches and weighs 1.96 pounds. The design shift from magnesium alloy to recycled anodized aluminum signifies Microsoft’s move towards environmentally conscious design.
- Display: The tablet boasts a 13-inch PixelSense touchscreen with a resolution of 2880 x 1920 pixels. It supports a 120Hz refresh rate, ensuring smooth visuals and responsive touch interactions.
- Performance: The 11th Generation Core i7 “Tiger Lake” processor powers the device, making it capable of handling a range of tasks, from casual browsing to intensive applications.
- Connectivity: The Surface Pro 8 includes two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports, a Surface Connect port, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. This ensures versatility in connecting peripherals and accessories.
- Accessories: Essential for those aiming to use the Pro 8 as a laptop replacement, the keyboard is available as an additional purchase. The tablet also supports the new stylus, enhancing its utility for designers and creators.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S8+ – Best Android Tablet for Creatives
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S8+ is a part of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S8 series, which is Android’s response to Apple’s pro-level iPads. This tablet aims at professional creative work on the platform, boasting a beautiful 12.4-inch screen and coming with Samsung’s excellent S Pen stylus. While the price is $899.99, its features and capabilities make it a strong contender in the high-end tablet market.
- Design: The Tab S8+ has a premium feel with a metal design, squared edges, and three color options – Graphite, Silver, or Pink Gold. It measures 9.99 by 6.51 by 0.29 inches and weighs 1.11 pounds.
- Display: The tablet features a 12.4-inch display with a resolution of 2800 x 1752. The screen offers 276 pixels per inch, ensuring sharp visuals. It also supports a high refresh rate of up to 120Hz, providing smooth scrolling and gaming experiences.
- Performance: While the exact chipset details weren’t provided, the tablet is expected to deliver top-tier performance, suitable for various tasks from casual browsing to intensive applications.
- Camera: The rear of the tablet houses a 13MP main camera and a 6MP ultra-wide option. The front features a 12MP ultra-wide camera, suitable for video calls and selfies.
- Battery: The Tab S8+ comes with a 10,090 mAh battery, expected to last a full day of usage. It also supports fast charging up to 45W.
Whether you’re a student, a content creator, or just someone looking for entertainment, there’s a tablet out there for you. The key is to identify your needs and choose a device that aligns with them. With technology constantly evolving, it’s exciting to see what the future holds for tablets.