The 16 Best Tablets of 2019

See our top picks for gamers, children, movie-lovers, and more

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

The Rundown

Our Top Picks

Most Popular: Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet

3.9

The Fire HD 10 tablet is both Amazon’s newest and biggest Fire tablet, and it’s their first step into truly competing with the larger Galaxy and Apple tablets. But, they’re doing that competing at a fraction of the price. It comes in three colors (black, blue or red), two sizes (32GB or 64GB) and with or without the ad-supported special offers. That all feels pretty standard for the Fire series, so let’s move on to the coolest part, which is the number of features you get for that bargain price.

For starters, that screen comes with a full 1080p resolution (1920 x 1200 pixels at 224 pixels per inch), so you’ll be able to post up and watch stunning movies and play HD video games with unbelievable clarity. They’ve even built in an interesting “in-plane-switching” LCD tech that offers less glare and more viewing angles. Even the stereo speakers on the Fire 10 sound as much like ones that belong in your home.

There’s a quad-core 1.2 GHz/1.4 GHz processor set with two times the RAM of the last gen of the Fire, so it won’t choke on any streaming you throw at it. The battery lasts up to 10 hours, so you’ll be able to do exactly what you’re supposed to do with a tablet – enjoy it on the go without having to be tethered to an outlet. The cameras on the front and back aren’t much to write home about, but the rear does offer 2MP of quality with the ability to shoot 720p video. Round that out with built-in Amazon Alexa functionality for summoning assistance and controlling your smart home, and factor in the durability (they’re calling it more durable than the iPad Pro 10.5-inch tablet), and you’ve got an absolute steal for the price.

Best Overall: Apple iPad Pro (2018)

Apple iPad Pro

 Best Buy

4.9

The new iPad Pro comes with a 12.9-inch or an 11-inch screen, providing a significant increase over the 2017 tablet while matching its predecessor’s ultra-thin dimensions. How is this possible? The iPad is now "all screen," eliminating the home button and shrinking the camera and speakers. For a well-rounded auditory experience, a tweeter and a subwoofer have been strategically placed in each corner of the device. The Home Button has been replaced by advanced facial-recognition software, allowing you to unlock the device or access Apple Pay by simply looking into the camera.

The display itself is also absolutely beautiful. The Pro features 2732 x 2048 resolution for the 12.9-inch, and 2388 x 1668 for the 11-inch tablet. The Liquid Retina display boasts remarkable color accuracy, 600 nits of brightness, and the lowest level of reflectivity among competitors.

Boasting, “More screen. Less device,” Apple delivers a larger, brighter display while decreasing its tablets’ overall volume by 25%. This new release doesn’t come cheap, but it's a worthy investment for those who appreciate visual quality.

Best for Portability: Samsung Tab A

4.7

This small tablet by Samsung is designed with portability in mind, the perfect companion for plane rides and overstuffed backpacks. It runs Android Marshmallow on 2GB of RAM and an Octa-core 1.6Ghz processor gives a smooth performance. While the 16GB of internal memory is on the small side, it has a microSDMT card slot to expand your capacity by up to 200GB, perfect for loading your tablet with enough movies and apps to keep you occupied. The 13-hour battery life is also ideal for long stretches on the road, while the smaller 10.1” screen and thin profile won’t weigh you down despite displaying excellent imagery. Finally, you can multitask with ease, thanks to functionality that allows you to run two apps side by side.  

Best iPad: 10.5-Inch iPad Pro (2017)

4.1

With Apple’s fastest ever mobile processor and True Tone display, the 10.5-inch iPad Pro is easily the best tablet out there right now. The iPad Pro uses sensors to detect the light in whatever room it’s in to adjust the color temperature of the display to the ambient light. The effect makes the screen look more like paper, and is most noticeable when it’s turned off and the screen switches to a bright bluish light. In addition to a 2224 x 1668 screen resolution, the device uses an A10X Fusion chip with 64-bit architecture Embedded M10 co-processor, the fastest mobile processor available on an iOS device, and features four speakers for the best possible sound. Not to mention, the iPad Pro is compatible with the Pencil, and has a special connector to keyboards so you don’t have to rely on a Bluetooth connection to type without using the on-screen keyboard. Obsessed with Instagramming? Apple also included the same rear-facing 12MP camera with 4K HD video, as well as a 7MP FaceTime HD camera, for those who want to take better photos on their tablet. Battery life is around 10 hours and it comes with 256 GB storage.

Best Old Release: Samsung Galaxy Tab S2

Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S2
Courtesy of Amazon.com
5

If Apple’s iPad doesn’t strike you as a must-buy, turn your head to Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S2. It’s everything the iPad is, but it runs Android 5.0 underneath Samsung’s proprietary TouchWiz skin. The 9.7-inch 2048 x 1536-pixel display is excellent and more than ideal for day-to-day tasks, including watching movies. The dual 1.9GHz + 1.3GHz quad-core CPU is paired with 3GB of RAM for snappy performance, and it doesn’t even stutter while multitasking. Lastly, the soft-plastic shell that pairs with metal running around the edges offers a semi-premium look and feel.

Beyond looks and power, the battery offers around 10 hours of use under everyday conditions with email, browsing and some movie streaming. Fortunately, the 32GB of internal storage is paired with a microSD slot for up to 128GB of extra storage for movies, pictures and video. The rear-facing eight-megapixel camera takes good enough photos but, like most tablet cameras, feels more like an afterthought than an everyday shooter. Fortunately, one of the Galaxy Tab S2's strengths is that it includes a bevy of Google, Microsoft and Samsung apps right out of the box, so jumping right into work and play is easy.

If you're purchasing this for a child, here's how to childproof your Android and make it kid-friendly. 

If you're buying a used version, here's how to erase all data and reset an Android.

Best 2017 Release: Samsung Galaxy Tab S3

4.4

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 sports an HDR-ready Super AMOLED screen that’s bright, vibrant and gives you the starkest differences between black and white levels. On top of that, the 9.7-inch screen gives you a resolution of 2048 x 1536 pixels, which is basically best in class. But beyond the display, the tablet doesn’t skimp on the rest of the features, either. The S pen, which has been a key character on several iterations of Galaxy devices, is front and center here, giving you a ton of extra features such as precise drawing, pulling up quick menus with the side buttons and more.

Samsung has tapped AKG to tune their set of quad speakers to accurately represent what is going on on the screen and to best project the sound to whatever position you’re watching from. Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charging gives you a full charge after only three hours, which gives you 12 hours of heavy use on the tablet.

The rear camera affords photos taken at a resolution of 13MP, while the front-facing camera allows selfies and video calls at 5MP. It comes standard with 32GB and can be expanded to up to 400GB by external SD card. There’s a Snapdragon 820 quad-core processor powering it all, which is plenty snappy for some of the more premium features, including Samsung’s seamless wireless sharing functionality called Samsung Flow.

Most Versatile: Surface Go

4.7

If you like the simplicity, portability, and affordability of tablets, but you’d like a bit more versatility, Microsoft’s Surface Go lands at the crossroads of all those features. No matter what your configuration, you get a 10-inch PixelSense screen with an 1800 x 1200 resolution display that offers a tight 217 pixels per inch.

The lowest end model isn’t the most attractive, as the 64GB of eMMC storage isn’t going to be as quick as the SSD in upgraded models. But, whichever model you get will offer Windows on a sleek portable system and an Intel Pentium Gold processor. The Surface Go is also built to feel premium with a magnesium case. Starting at just 1.15 pounds, the newest model also wins the title for the lightest model of any Surface device.

Like the Surface Pro and Surface Book line, the Surface Go tablet gives you the option of using the device as a tablet or attaching it to a keyboard — sold separately in this case — so you can use it like a laptop. You can enjoy 9 hours of continuous use on one charge.

Best Display: Samsung Galaxy Tab S4

4.7

The displays on Samsung mobile devices are always a cut above. Rather than fight it out in the pixel-count arms race with other devices, Samsung has been a market leader in Super AMOLED tech, which allows their screens to look brighter and sharper without having to pack in a ton more pixels. The Galaxy Tab S4's 10.5-inch display manages to deliver a resolution of 2560 x 1600 which yields incredibly sharp HD images.

Another great feature here is the S Pen: What was initially a great expression tool is now considered an artist-grade device, offering 4096 points of pressure to give you amazing control when sketching — just as if you were using a real pencil. The rear camera keeps parity with a lot of the tablets on the market with a 13MP sensor and F1.9 aperture, and the front camera is actually pretty impressive with a 13MP sensor and its own F1.9 aperture. There’s a Qualcomm MSM8998 processor for dual speed ratings of 2.35 GHz and 1.9GHz (depending on where your carrier is). They’ve paired that with 4GB of RAM and offer storage configurations of 64GB and 256GB.

The Dolby Atmos, AKG-tuned speaker system is comprised of four different drivers (two top-firing and two bottom-firing), so the entertainment capabilities are pretty great, too. Add that to the amazing 7300mAh fast-charging battery — which Samsung claims can last for 16 hours of video playback — and you have a versatile powerhouse that’s only 7.1mm thick.

Best 2018 Release: All-New Amazon Fire HD 8 with Alexa

3

Amazon has a new tablet on the way and it’s going to be the budget device to watch. Like Amazon’s other tablets, the Fire HD 8 line has historically offered an impressive balance of hardware and affordability, and that’s continuing with the new Fire HD 8.

The new tablet offers an 8-inch IPS display with 1280 x 800 resolution, which qualifies it as HD. It may not be as sharp as a lot of other devices’ displays, but the most affordable model of the new Fire HD 8 is close to a quarter of the price of a new iPad.

The new tablet has a quad-core processor with 1.5GB of RAM. It may not be much for multi-tasking and production workloads, but, it’ll do the job for streaming content, using Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant to control smart home gadgets, and surfing the internet. You can pick up the new Fire HD 8 in 16GB or 32GB models and in a range of colors including black, yellow, red, and blue.

Best Splurge: Microsoft Surface Pro 6

 In the tablet space, it’s been hard for Microsoft to shake the legacy of the Apple iPad. The iPad has for years dominated what we think a modern tablet should do, but Microsoft (and a few other players) have put a dent in the iPad’s armor by continuing to show the things it can’t do.

The Surface Pro 6, Microsoft’s newest laptop-tablet hybrid, runs Windows 10 and matches the newest iPad when it comes to features and exceeds the iPad when it comes to productivity. It runs the full version of Windows 10, which means you can run Microsoft Office and anything else that runs on Windows. Let’s also take a look at the Surface Pro 6’s polished hardware. The Surface Pro has a crisp and quite pretty 12.3-inch screen with 2,736 x 1,824 resolution and the battery now lasts more than 10 hours on a single charge. It also now comes in both black and platinum colors.

One final note: There are various configurations you can choose from on the Surface Pro 6. It is available in 8GB or 16GB of RAM, has your choice of an Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processor, and storage options of 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, or 1TB.

Best Budget Android: Huawei Mediapad T3

This 8-inch tablet by Huawei is a refreshing option for those who want a full Android experience without the overinflated price tag of something like a Samsung. Huawei has long been known as a brand that makes the right concessions to keep product prices down, and it seems like they’ve done it again with the T3. First, the OS isn’t stock Android. Rather, it’s an Android Nougat-powered custom skin that Huawei is calling the EMUI 5.1 OS. Huawei’s goal was to include interesting gestural options to make the experience just a bit more intuitive. With a resolution of 1280 x 800, the display — from a pixel count perspective — is one of the aforementioned comprises to keep the price down. But at only 8 inches, you probably won’t notice a lack of sharpness; plus, with IPS technology, the color representation and viewing angles are great.

The tablet runs off of a 4800 mAh battery that Huawei has measured against heavy use to deliver pretty substantial life on one charge. The rear camera incorporates a 5MP sensor and the front-facing camera is 2MP — both of which should suffice on a tablet, where cameras aren’t usually the focus anyway. Finally, the build quality and form factor feel way more premium than the model's price point, thanks to a single-piece anodized aluminum shell and slim measurements of just 0.3 inches thick and 0.77 pounds.

Interested in reading more reviews? Take a look at our selection of the best Android tablets.

Runner-Up, Most Versatile: Apple iPad (2018)

The 9.7-inch iPad that Apple launched in the early half of 2018 has shaped up to be a viable tablet for shoppers looking for a machine that’ll do just a bit of everything. At less than $500, the basic model isn’t priced painfully high, and it still offers decent specs.

This iPad runs on a powerful A10 Fusion chip, has an 8-megapixel rear camera, and 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera. The 9.7-inch display uses an IPS panel for good viewing angles and has a resolution of 2048 x1536 for a crisp 264 pixels per inch. The 2018 iPad is also the first non-Pro model to support the Apple Pencil, meaning artsy users can sketch and doodle to their heart's content.

You can pair the iPad with a keyboard to use it more like a laptop, though the functionality won’t be quite as close to a real laptop's as a machine like the Surface Go manages. Still, you can browse the web, send correspondence, play games, watch movies, and do plenty more on the iPad. The option for LTE connectivity makes it that much more well rounded.

Best Budget: Amazon Fire 7 with Alexa

When it comes to devices on a budget, Amazon has a distinct advantage. With Amazon’s Special Offers and forked version of Android, Fire OS, the company has the incentive to subsidize the cost of the tablets a bit. In other words, you get a great deal on a tablet if you’re willing to wade through a bit of Amazon advertising and branding.

The Fire 7 tablet is fairly basic, but at $49 full price, it’s really a steal. It has a 7-inch display that may not be HD, but will get the job done in a pinch. And, because it’s an IPS panel, will offer decent viewing angles in case you want to share your screen. A quad-core processor will help keep things zippy and expandable storage via microSD card can help you store plenty of movies and TV shows. The Fire 7 comes in both 8GB and 16GB models.

Make no mistake, when it comes to performance, build quality, and display, the Fire 7 isn’t doesn't really stack up against the competition here. But, for its incredibly low price, it’s easy enough to justify picking up a Fire 7 just for the occasional bus, train, or plane ride on which you might want a bigger screen for media viewing or light gaming.

Runner-Up, Best Splurge: HP ZBook x2 G4

HP’s ZBook x2 G4 almost seems like a wild design experiment when we consider just how much HP has packed into a tablet. Like the Surface Book or Surface Pro, the ZBook x2 G4 has a main tablet component that can connect to a keyboard. The big difference is that the ZBook x2 G4 went crazy with the tablet's features, making a machine truly targeted towards professionals.

At its high end, the ZBook x2 G4 runs Windows 10 Pro, and packs an Intel Core i7-8650U, 32GB of DDR4 RAM, a 1TB PCIe NVMe SSD, Nvidia Quadro M620 graphics, and has a 14-inch IPS touchscreen display that’s anti-glare and boasts 4K resolution. You can use the ZBook x2 G4 with a stylus which utilizes an incredible 4,096 pressure sensitivity levels as well.

If you work in a creative field and want a machine that’s up to the task, the HP ZBook x2 G4 stands out as the tablet that’s ready for anything. For most, it’s probably a bit overkill (especially when it comes to the price), but it’s hard to look away from a tablet that does this much.

Best for Kids: Amazon Fire 7 Kids Edition

If you’re buying a tablet for a kid, Amazon’s Fire 7 Kids Edition is a solid option. It matches affordability with a kid-friendly design (available in blue, pinks, and yellow) and offers up a tablet that’s not watered-down, weak hardware just because it’s a kids device. The 7-inch IPS display gives kids plenty of screen to watch, play, and learn on. And, the rubber bumpers built all around the device help protect it from accidents.

Beyond the tablet itself, what Amazon offers in addition really helps make this a great pick. Amazon offers what it calls a “2-year worry-free guarantee,” noting that the company will replace the Fire 7 Kids Edition if it's broken — no questions asked. The tablet also comes with easy parental controls and a free year of FreeTime Unlimited, which has a large selection of content from games and books to videos and apps.

At $99, the Fire 7 Kids Edition stands out as a good deal, and it gets even better if you need to pick up more than one. Amazon generally offers a discount when bought in pairs, even up to 25-percent off the total.

Best for Home Entertainment: Lenovo Yoga Tablet 3 Pro

The Lenovo Yoga Tablet 3 Pro is a nifty little Android tablet that has one wild trick up its sleeve. Aside from its sharp 10.1-inch IPS display with a crisp 2560 x 1600 resolution and 299 pixels per inch, the tablet has a built-in projector. So, when you really want to share your screen and 10-inches just won't do, you can project a massive 70-inch image onto the wall.

The Yoga Tablet 3 Pro also has four JBL speakers and support for Dolby Atmos. Plus, you can easily connect the tablet to a Bluetooth speaker to round out your home entertainment. It has a large battery to sustain continuous use (looking at you, binge-watchers), and a stand that lets you position it a number of different ways.

With an Intel Atom processor and running Android 6.0, the Yoga Tablet 3 Pro isn’t the most outstanding tablet from a performance or software standpoint. But, the hardware is plenty sufficient to use the tablet as a multimedia device. And, the excellent built-in display and projector give you two great viewing options.

Tested by

How We Tested

We bought nine tablets and our reviewers spent more than 300 hours testing them. They took them home to use in their everyday activities — surfing the Web, doing work, streaming videos, and playing games — to find out what the strengths and flaws really were. We asked our testers to consider the most important features when using these tablets, from their screen size to their battery life. We've outlined the key points here so that you, too, know what to look for when shopping.

What to Look for in a Tablet

Screen size - The average tablet is around 10 inches, measured diagonally, but they can be as small as 8 inches and run up to 13.5. The screen size is really a personal preference, but for productivity purposes, it’s often the bigger the better. If you’re merely streaming a show or reading a book, a smaller screen should suffice.

Budget - You should definitely prepare to pay a premium for an Apple iPad, which can easily cost fives times that of a budget tablet. And the higher the screen resolution and the more powerful the processor, the more you can expect to pay. But Amazon makes some amazingly affordable options that still give you access to all the apps you could want, plus its Alexa personal assistant.

Battery life - Compared to smartphones, which barely make it through the day on a single charge, most tablets can last at least a couple days, depending on use, of course. Be sure to buy one with at least 10 hours of rated battery life and you’ll be good to go.

Test Results: Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet (Most Popular)

3.9

What We Like

  • High-quality screen for video

  • Fast and responsive

  • Great e-reader functionality

What We Don’t Like

  • Heavy

  • Complex setup

At first, some of our testers were a bit overwhelmed by the Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet. We understand: Having millions of movies, books, TV shows, and songs right at your fingertips can feel like a lot at first. But, as one reviewer put it, “It starts to become more customized to your needs the more familiar you get with it.”

One reviewer said the tablet’s video quality is “really high,” which is definitely a requirement if you plan on watching all your shows and movies on this model. “It was fast and responsive,” she said. “When clicking an app, it opened up very quickly.” Plus, weighing in at just 13 ounces, it’s certainly portable. Grab a bigger bag though; our testers consistently mentioned just how big the screen seemed.

Test Results: Apple iPad Pro (2018) (Best Overall)

Apple iPad Pro
 Best Buy
4.9

What We Like

  • Sleek design

  • Powerful built-in speakers

  • Great performance

What We Don't Like

  • Battery life can vary widely

  • Expensive accessories

“The iPad Pro’s internal makeup wipes the floor with almost every tablet on the market,” raved one of our testers. Its “sleek and professional design” and “powerful built-in speakers” were also highlights, according to one reviewer. In terms of negatives, one of our testers reported that its battery life can vary widely (depending on the applications used). One reviewer also noted that to maximize its capabilities, “you have to buy the essential accessories like the Smart Keyboard and the Apple Pencil, which are expensive and bloat the price.”

Test Results: Samsung Tab A (Best for Portability)

4.7

What We Like

  • High resolution screen

  • Integration with Chrome and other Google apps

  • Solid camera

What We Don’t Like

  • Unintuitive settings features

  • Poor app store experience

According to one tester: “The video quality is high, it has a really nice screen, and the battery life is superior to comparable Apple products.” Plus, this device’s very slim profile — it clocks in at just over 10 inches tall and a little over a pound — makes it extremely portable. One person described the design as “very cool and sleek.”

Our testers liked the intuitive interface, the high-resolution display, and the impressive battery life. In fact, one person said the battery was “superior” to similar Apple products.

Test Results: 10.5-inch iPad Pro, 2017 (Best iPad)

4.1

What We Like

  • Sleek design

  • Easy to use

  • Customizable

What We Don't Like

  • Fragile screen

  • Expensive

Apple’s 10.5-inch iPad Pro is such a fan favorite that it became the ideal tablet that our testers compared all the others to — and we didn’t even ask them to! Overall, the iPad Pro provides an easy-to-use, intuitive interface and all the apps you love and know as an Apple user.

Our reviewers praised the tablet’s “great screen size,” easy setup process, and battery life. Because of the 12-megapixel, rear-facing camera, the impressive display, and the fast speed, our testers think this is a solid purchase for creative types or users that consume a lot of media.

Test Results: Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 (Best Old Release)

5

What We Like

  • Good camera

  • Nice amount of storage

  • Light and thin

What We Don't Like

  • Battery life could be better

One of our testers specifically commented on the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2’s speed, saying that both the touchscreen and the apps had “great responsiveness.” In fact, our reviewers rated this tablet so highly — 5 out of 5 stars — that we think we may have even converted a few Apple users. One person said, “This tablet exceeded my expectations in how great the camera, interface, and overall functionality was.”

One tester described the overall profile as “very light and thin,” which makes the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 the perfect tablet to take on the go.

Test Results: Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 (Best 2017 Release)

4.4

What We Like

  • Stylish, lightweight design

  • High speed

What We Don’t Like

  • Slight lag on touch screen

  • Slow charging

One Lifewire tester summed up his experience with the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 by saying, “It has all the functions I need: internet, camera, and drawing capabilities.” He loved the drawing functionality (with the included S Pen) despite some lag on the touchscreen. Our reviewers also thought the charging time was a little slow — 2.5 hours — but was worth it for the long battery life. “Overall, it’s a great product,” one person said.

Test Results: Surface Go (Most Versatile)

4.7

What We Like

  • Very portable

  • Excellent display quality

  • Good battery life

What We Don't Like

  • Not very fast at complex tasks

Surface Go
Surface Go back
Surface Go side
Surface Go parts
Surface Go screen

One of our testers reported that this device quickly became one her favorites to travel with. “It doesn't matter what bag I decide to use for the day — the Surface Go always fits nicely and adds little weight.” In addition to being very portable, our testers thought that this tablet’s display was “very sharp and crisp” and that it had a good battery life. Although our reviewers observed that the device slowed down while performing more involved tasks (like photo editing), they thought it handled things like emailing and surfing the Internet with ease.

Test Results: Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 (Best Display)

4.7

What We Like

  • Incredible display

  • Great sound

  • Perfect for multitasking

What We Don't Like

  • Heavy

  • Navigation is difficult at first

Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
Samsung Galaxy Tab
Samsung Galaxy S4
Samsung Tab S4
Samsung Tab S4

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 came highly recommended by our testers for its exceptional display and sound. In addition to describing the image quality as “rich” and “sharp,” one of our reviewers said “it sounds like there is full surround sound in the tablet.” Our reviewers were also impressed with its speed and how functional it was. “The screen size is great for multitasking and if you want to use the tablet as a laptop,” remarked one of our testers. In terms of downsides, one of our reviewers wished it were a little lighter. One of our testers also noted, “I thought it was a little difficult to navigate in the beginning, and the touchscreen is very sensitive.”

Test Results: All-New Amazon Fire HD 8 with Alexa (Best 2018 Release)

3

What We Like

  • Great price

  • Durable

  • Helpful Alexa voice control

What We Don't Like

  • Audio is tinny

  • Not a lot of customization

“This is easily one of the cheapest options on the market for a useful slate that’ll let you browse social media and stream content regularly,” explained one of our testers. Other pluses, according to our reviewers, were its sturdy build and helpful Alexa voice integration. One tester wasn’t impressed, however, with its “tinny” audio quality and also said its speed made it more suited to “basic browsing and app use.”