The best Android tablets in 2018: the best slates running Google s OS, TechRadar

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The best Android tablets in 2018: the best slates running Google’s OS

Don’t want an iPad? Then we have the top slates for you

Looking for a tablet and thinking about an Android device? Well, there are other options out there with Windows 10 tablets such as the Surface Pro – but tablets running Android remain the main rival to the iOS 11-toting New iPad, iPad Pro 10.5, iPad Pro 12.9, iPad Pro 9.7 and iPad mini 4.

And there are plenty of options to consider. Some Android tablets have 10-inch screens, others seven, some land somewhere in between and a handful even push the boundaries past 10 inches.

There are also big differences in battery life, processing power, RAM, price and even the software each slate is running. Some are toting the latest Android 8 Oreo, while some are still stuck on Android 7 Nougat.

Below you’ll find our selection of the best Android tablets on the market right now. You’ll find devices from all price and size points and these are the very best tablets powered by Google’s own operating system.

1. Samsung Galaxy Tab S3

Samsung’s latest flagship Android slate is super

Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S3 is our favorite Android tablet in the world right now and replaces the Galaxy Tab S2, which is also a Samsung product.

This newer tablet is the best Android slate in the world thanks to a powerful processor and an excellent display that’s prepped to show you HDR content, something even the iPad can’t do yet.

There’s an S-Pen stylus in the box and you’ll also have the option of buying a keyboard too, but that will cost quite a bit extra.

The price of the Galaxy Tab S3 is high, but it’s worth it when you look at all of the power and amazing features you’ll get for that amount of money.

2. Google Pixel C

Pure Android on a premium tablet

Google’s done it – it’s made one of the best Android tablets around. The Google Pixel C has it all: a fantastic display, heaps of power and a premium design.

Okay, it’s not quite got it all – it’s a little on the heavy side and the pricey (yet rather clever) keyboard dock isn’t fully utilised by the Android interface, which is made very much for touch and not physical keys and productivity.

Those points aside, the Pixel C goes toe-to-toe with the iPad Air 2 and even the iPad Pro 9.7 with its clean stock Android interface, sultry metal body and super screen. If you’re looking for the best of Google in a tablet, the Pixel C gives you just that.

3. Asus ZenPad 3S 10

One of the best new Android tablets out

Nope, that’s not an iPad you can see just above. That’s one of the latest tablets from Asus – the ZenPad 3S 10 – and it’s our second favorite Android tablet you’re able to buy right now.

There’s decent power inside this slate as well as a super bright and beautiful display to look at on the front.

The battery life and build quality aren’t the best on the market, but considering the lower price point than the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 above, we’d recommend picking this up if you’re looking for something a touch cheaper.

4. Huawei MediaPad M3 8

The best cheap tablet you can buy right now

Topping our best cheap tablet list is the Huawei MediaPad M3 8.0 that falls in position four on our best Android tablet list thanks to an excellent screen, lots of power and its great value for money.

It has a slim body with an aluminium frame that makes it look premium while also being practical too.

There’s a sharp screen, it comes with speakers that offer impressive volume for a slim tablet and it’s a lot cheaper than most of the other Android tablets on this list too.

5. Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro

Taking ‘Netflix and chill’ to the next level

The Lenovo Yoga Tab 3 Pro is packed full of media-focused features and sports a unique, distinctive design.

There’s a built in stand to take the heft off your hands, while the integrated projector means you can enjoy big screen entertainment away from your TV, though the screen is sharp enough that you won’t always feel the need to use a projector anyway.

All that tech does make it less portable than most tablets on this list and the UI could be better, but it’s a fairly unique option.

6. Samsung Galaxy Tab S2

Samsung’s latest flagship Android slate is super

There are plenty of reasons to invest in the Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 – especially if you’re after one of the best Android tablets on the market but at a cheaper price than the Galaxy Tab S3 above.

It’s reading and web surfing-friendly, while the new 4:3 screen and general size and shape is better suited for most things. Videos work better on its predecessor thanks to its elongated aspect ratio – but they don’t exactly look bad here.

You can pick the Tab S2 up in 8-inch and 9.7-inch variants, to challenge Apple’s iPad and iPad mini ranges, with the smaller option being more portable and cheaper.

Almost impossibly thin, pumped full of power and with a slick version of Samsung’s TouchWiz interface on board the Galaxy Tab S2 gives the iPad Pro 9.7 and Pixel C a real run for their money.

7. Amazon Fire HD 10 (2017)

Cheap tablet with a huge screen

This tablet will be particularly great if you have an Amazon Prime membership because it comes with a huge screen for watching movies and TV as well as reading ebooks.

It’s a cheap option that still packs such high-end specs including a 10-inch screen, but don’t expect it to feature the best features on the market like some of the tablets at the top of the list.

8. Amazon Fire HD 8 (2017)

The best you can get at this price

The Amazon Fire HD 8 (2017) is among the best of the retail giant’s tablets, as while it’s in many ways lower end than the similar HD 10, the smaller screen is sharper as a result, and the price is lower.

It also delivers surprisingly strong gaming performance, with a decent amount of power for the money. The speakers aren’t great and the cameras are awful, but tablets aren’t for taking photos and you can always use headphones.

What you do get is solid if not spectacular performance, and tight integration with Amazon’s other services through Fire OS, all at a price that’s well below most of the non-Amazon branded competition. You should also note that if you already own the 2016 version of this tablet, it won’t be worth upgrading to the 2017 version as the differences are very minimal.

9. Amazon Fire 7 (2017)

Almost unbelievably cheap

Tablets don’t get any cheaper than this – well, functional ones don’t anyway. The incredibly low price and sturdy design make the Amazon Fire 7 (2017) a great choice to give to a kid – in fact, Amazon’s even built a (pricier) version specifically for children.

But even for a grown audience the Amazon Fire far exceeds expectations, with a fairly bright 7.0-inch screen, acceptable speakers, solid battery life and even reasonable performance, with a snappy interface and the ability to run most games.

Fire OS won’t suit everyone and this isn’t a tablet that impresses once you take the price out of the equation, but for what the Amazon Fire costs it would almost be rude not to buy it.

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