Top 10 Best Android Tablets Buyers Guide: May 2016 Edition

April 28, 2016 - Written By Tom Dawson

For some time now, we’ve been hoping for some better Android tablets to come along and add some spice to the fairly lackluster range of devices that have been available and yet that hasn’t happened. Aside from Amazon releasing an updated Amazon Fire tablet, we’re still waiting for practically anyone that’s anyone in the tablet world to release something new and fresh. As such, we’re left in the same position as we have been for months now; looking towards last year’s tablet offerings for answers on what to buy for this year.

10. Samsung Galaxy ViewSamsung Galaxy View Verizon

When Samsung announced the Galaxy View, a lot of people were wondering if Samsung were serious or not. The certainly were, but the end result has become a large tablet that, thanks to some lower-end specifications, hasn’t exactly aged all that well. With just a 1900 x 1200 display, the Galaxy View is basically an 18.4-inch tablet that you can take with you. It might run Android, but its too unwieldy and too large to actually use in your hands, and it’s fairly pricey for a machine of its mid-range specs and limited use cases.

Buy the Galaxy View

09. Lenovo Tab 3

Lenovo TAB 3 10 Biz MWC AH 1

Lenovo has been producing some pretty great Android tablets over the past few years, and their Tab 3 line is the latest in their budget offerings. Available in a multitude of sizes, both the Tab 3 7 and 8-inch varieties are available for less that $150, and the larger, 10-inch business model costs just $200 and offers a Full HD display, 2GB of RAM and some extra niceties as well. As budget Android tablets go, these Google-powered Lenovo Tab 3 options are pretty hard to beat and they should definitely be looked into if you want something cheap and cheerful that doesn’t compromise too much on specs or features.

08. Amazon Fire, Fire HD

Fire HD 6 deal

The $50 Amazon Fire tablet was recently updated with some more internal storage, a bit of speed boost and more color, which makes Amazon’s Android tablets even better offerings for the money than they’ve ever been. Of course, the Amazon Fire, as well as the more capable Fire HD tablets don’t come with any Google services and instead rely on Amazon’s services and the Amazon Appstore. For the most part, this won’t cause the average user any problems, but the Play Store isn’t included here, and a lot of people entrenched with Google services will find it difficult to adjust.

Buy the Amazon Fire

07. Google Nexus 9

AH Nexus 9 - 3 Chris-57

Just recently, the Nexus 9 was removed from Google’s own store, which pretty much spells the beginning of the end for the Nexus 9. By end we mean an inability to purchase it directly from Google and perhaps the sign of support for the tablet ending either at the end of this year or early next. Regardless, it’s still available from Amazon as well as HTC, and if you’re looking for an 8.9-inch tablet with great speakers, then the Nexus 9 is not a bad tablet. It’s not an entirely exciting tablet, but as we found in our original review it’s certainly a capable and respectable tablet.

Buy the Nexus 9 from Amazon

06. Dell Venue 8 7000

Dell-Venue-8-7840-AH-03546

The Dell Venue 8 line of Android tablets is certainly starting to look a little long in the tooth, but its age offers users one of the more unique designs we’ve seen in an Android tablet for some time, and it has some cool party tricks up its sleeve, too. Being able to measure thing using some cool technology from Intel is just one of them, but the 8-inch OLED display is certainly the main attraction and for a lot of users, it’ll be worth paying the premium for it. With Intel on the inside and great looks on the out, this is one of the most interesting smaller Android tablets out there.

Buy the Dell Venue 8

05. NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet K1

NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet K1 AH-149

If the original NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet wasn’t quite good enough for you, then this follow-up should solve that. The new Tegra K1 processor under-the-hood of this version make games look even better and run even smoother. It’s also got a lot going for it in terms of display quality, too. Still, this is just an Android tablet with some great gaming prowess, which is great for a lot of users, but not for everyone. It’s not an especially good-looking tablet, either. Considering that the controller costs so much as well, the SHIELD Tablet can become a pricey option, but if you’re all about the gaming, this is the tablet to get.

Buy the SHIELD Tablet K1 from Amazon

04. Lenovo YOGA Tab 3 Pro

AH Lenovo YOGA Tab 3 Pro-16

Despite having a mouthful of a name, this is one of the better tablets to get if you’re looking to do a little bit of everything. The long battery life ensures extended use over most other tablets, and the stand-come-handle-come-hook is something no other Android tablet can offer at this point. The 10.1-inch Quad HD display looks great and when combined the four speakers and Dolby Atmos processing, this is a great tablet for entertainment. Things only get better, however, when you start to use the rear-firing HD projector, which gives you a cinema to use whenever you want and wherever you might be.

Buy the Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro

03. Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet

Xperia Z4 Tablet AH 19

When it comes to tablets that do a little of everything, the Xperia Z4 Tablet is right up there with the best of them. It’s got a great 10.1-inch Quad HD display, a Snapdragon 810 and 3GB of RAM running the show, and it’s less than 7mm thick to boot. It’s also dust and water-resistant as well, which makes this a tablet you can use in the bath or whatever else is unadvisable with other tablets. The included keyboard dock and tweaks to Android made by Sony make this one of the best Android tablets out there for getting work done and while it’s damn pricey, you do get a lot for your money, as we discovered.

Buy the Xperia Z4 Tablet

02. Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 – 9.7-inch

Galaxy Tab S2 IFA AH 20

Looking for an iPad that isn’t an iPad? The Galaxy Tab S2 is a great option to look into, the 9.7-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED display looks as good as it sounds, and Samsung have made some thoughtful changes to Android for the better with the Galaxy Tab S2. With some nice extras and such, this is one of the best Android tablets to do it all and add in some extras as well. For the average user with some money to spare, this is easily the best option to go for, but those looking for a little more do have one more option to look into…

Buy the Galaxy Tab S2

01. Google Pixel C

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The Google Pixel C did not get off to a good start, but now it’s become one of the most exciting Android tablets out there, and with Android N getting better and better in its preview, the Pixel C is shaping up to be the tablet it should have always been. With a great display, great internals and a fairly decent keyboard given its size, the Pixel C is a great piece of hardware. Our original review found that the software wasn’t quite on par, but now that Android N is making changes all over the place, this should no longer be much of a problem in the future, and the Pixel C should be the shining light of Android tablets that Google want it to be.