New and updated tablets just keep coming - we've updated this article to keep pace with the latest models. This review now includes 57 tablet computers across 14 brands, priced from $179 to $999.
You'll notice other changes as well, with more details in the comparison table, a revised scoring system and the inclusion of some models we've tested but don't yet have an announced price in Australia. We'll update that information as soon as we can. Our rigorous testing reveals which tablets:
- are the easiest to use
- have the best battery life performance
- have the best screen, sound and video quality
- have the best construction quality
- are best able to handle all types of media - video, sound and photos, and
- are the most versatile.
On this page:
For more information on laptops and netbooks see computers and accessories.
Tablets are the biggest growth area for personal computers, with worldwide sales projected at over 100 million this year alone. And the Apple iPad is still the benchmark, with 60-70% of the worldwide market - but there’s no shortage of challengers fighting for second place.
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Video: Mini tablets comparison
CHOICE takes a look at 3 new tablets to hit the market, the iPad mini, Google Nexus 7 and the Microsoft Surface.
- Acer Iconia Tab A200 (16 GB)
- Acer Iconia Tab A200 (8 GB)
- Acer Iconia Tab A510
- Acer Iconia Tab A700 (32 GB + WiFi)
- Amazon Kindle Fire HD 16GB
- Amazon Kindle Fire HD 32GB
- Apple iPad 2 (16GB)
- Apple iPad 2 (16GB+3G)
- Apple iPad Mini (16Gb + 4G)
- Apple iPad Mini (16Gb + WiFi)
- Apple iPad Mini (32Gb + 4G)
- Apple iPad Mini (32Gb + WiFi)
- Apple iPad Mini (64Gb + 4G)
- Apple iPad Mini (64Gb + WiFi)
- Apple iPad with retina display (16Gb + 4G)
- Apple iPad with retina display (16Gb + WiFi)
- Apple iPad with retina display (32Gb + 4G)
- Apple iPad with retina display (32Gb + WiFi)
- Apple iPad with retina display (64Gb + 4G)
- Apple iPad with retina display (64Gb + WiFi)
- Archos 101 G9
- Archos 80 G9
- Archos 97 Carbon
- Archos A9 Wifi
- Asus Eee Pad Slider
- Asus Padfone 32Gb
- Asus Padfone 64Gb
- Asus TF700T (32GB + Keyboard)
- Asus TF700T (64GB)
- Asus Transformer Pad TF300T (3G + Keyboard)
- Asus Transformer Pad TF300T (WiFi + Keyboard)
- Asus Transformer Pad TF300T (WiFi)
- Asus Transformer Prime TF201 ( (WiFi - 64GB + Keyboard)
- Asus Transformer Prime TF201 (WiFi - 32GB + Keyboard)
- Asus Vivo Tab RT (32Gb)
- Asus Vivo Tab RT (64Gb)
- BlackBerry Playbook (OS V2 - 32 GB)
- Google Nexus 7 (16GB)
- Google Nexus 7 (32GB)
- Kogan Agora 10
- Lenovo Thinkpad 1838CTO (3G + 64 GB)
- Microsoft Surface RT (32GB)
- Microsoft Surface RT (64GB)
- Motorola Xoom 2
- Samsung Galaxy Note
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
- Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (32GB)
- Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 (16GB + 3G)
- Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 (16GB + WiFi)
- Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 LTE
- Samsung Google Nexus 10
- Sony Tablet S (16 GB + 3G)
- Sony Tablet S (32 GB)
- Sony Xperia Tablet S (WiFi + 32GB)
- Sony Xperia Tablet S (WiFi + 64GB)
- Toshiba AT200-100 (16 GB)
- Toshiba AT300 (16GB)
How we test
To help with the high cost of testing a wide range of models we employ specialised labs in Europe to test the tablets with the results shared among a range of consumer organisations around the world. The testing covers a wide scope, including:
- Device overview: this includes physical characteristics such as connections (USB, HDMI etc), memory, build quality and weight
- Internet and emails: covers how easy it is to set up and use email, browse the internet and use internet services including social networking.
- Multimedia: covers all the media - photos, sound and video, and how easy it is to transfer files, make video calls, and find the Apps you want in the App store.
- Ease of use: now focussed on buttons, the keyboard and how easy it is to handle and use the device.
- Screen quality: we've separated this out as a major characteristic of tablets, including all aspects of the screen from performance to usability.
- Battery: the lifetime of the battery is an important feature in its own right.
- Backup and security: increasingly important in the use of tablets is the security of your data, whether its secure access to the tablet, backing up of data and recovery from failures.
For more detail, see "How we score"
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