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Jonathan Jones
Jonathan Jones

Buy Apple Tablet

With more offices and schools opting for virtual attendance or hybrid schedules, a tablet can be a great alternative to a laptop with its portability, ease of use, and connectivity options. A good tablet is something that should have a long battery life, a respectable selection of apps and services, and more functionality than just a screen to watch YouTube videos.

buy apple tablet

Below is a list of tablets designed to fit specific needs and budgets. Whether you're looking for a low-cost device for your kids or something that can effectively replace a computer to take to school, there's a tablet for everyone.

I limited what I included in this list to tablets that offer a reliable experience, along with a mix of affordability and features. Not all tablets are created equal, so we used our years of research, personal experience, and knowledge about the products included here to make suggestions.

Apple's tried-and-true tablet, the base model iPad, is arguably the best value out of Apple's tablet lineup, and experts agree. Avi Greengart, a consumer tech analyst at Techsponential, said the iPad is the most versatile tablet on the market today.

"There's an endless array of accessories, there's a lot of iPad-specific software, and you can use it for watching content, for browsing the internet, for games, for education, etc.," he said. "For productivity, you can add keyboard or pencil to it. It's also powerful enough for light computing tasks that consumers think of when they're looking for a tablet."

Amazon's Fire tablets run the company's forked version of Android, complete with Amazon's services baked right in. You won't find any of Google's own apps, or even the Play Store, on a Fire tablet. However, Amazon's own App Store has many of the same apps that regular Android devices have access to -- including Netflix, Facebook, and Spotify.

The Fire HD 10 is affordable, faster than ever, and doubles as an Echo smart speaker, with Alexa awaiting your commands. ZDNET's Jason Cipriani tested this cheap tablet for a few weeks and was impressed with its versatility and performance, noting it can "work, in a pinch, if your main laptop or computer is being repaired, or you're looking to do light work while traveling." You can get it with 32GB or 64GB of storage, but don't fret if that's not enough. It has microSD card support for up to another 512GB of storage.

The touchscreen is 10.1 inches and is in full 1080p high definition. Battery life should be good enough to get you around 12 hours of use, or enough to get through a full day of use. It's not the fastest tablet available, but the Fire HD 10 is a perfect budget tablet for someone who wants to browse the internet, watch videos, or check email without spending a ton of money.

If you're looking for an Android tablet, the Samsung Galaxy Tab s8 Ultra is one of the best Android tablets. The Tab S8 Ultra features a 14.6-inch Super AMOLED display, runs on the Android 12 operating system, and Samsung's S Pen stylus is included in the box. When ordering your Tab S8 Ultra, you can equip it with 512GB of storage and 16GB of memory for $1,399, however, it's likely overkill.

ZDNET's Matthew Miller reviewed the Galaxy Tab S8 and said, if you can get over the size of the tablet, people who sketch or draw will enjoy the S Pen and the large display. He also described the tablet as a "nice demonstration of Samsung's technical innovation."

Dan Gookin, an author of technology books, said that Samsung's lineup of tablets is the best option for Android users who want good hardware in a tablet: "I believe Samsung is the only major player left for the Android tablet market, which makes them a good choice if you want to stay on Planet Android," he said.

One thing to note: With an Android tablet of this size, you're most likely looking at it as a laptop replacement. That means you'll want to pick up the $349 Book Cover Keyboard. Once connected, you'll be able to use Samsung DeX on the S8 Ultra, effectively turning the tablet into an Android-powered 2-in-1 device with plenty of space for multitasking and using more than one app at a time.

ZDNET's Mary Branscombe tested the Surface Go 3 and said it "shines as a portable device." It's perfect for working on an airplane tray table or a crowded train, and for throwing in a backpack. It's a small tablet, with a display of just 10.5 inches, but it runs the full Windows operating system that you can customize.

And, although the differences between the fifth generation and this sixth generation model are more subtle, the M2 chip is really what shines here, making it a powerhouse tablet. The iPad Pro, combined with iPadOS and the M2 chip, is as close as you can get to a laptop without actually buying a laptop.

Where the iPad Pro is the model for those who want nothing but the best, the iPad Air is the model for those who want to use the tablet for work and play, without big sacrifices in performance or features. ZDNET's Jason Cipriani reviewed the iPad Air (2022) and said if you're in the market for an iPad (and the base model and iPad Mini isn't enough for you), then the iPad Air is "where your search should begin and, likely, end."

When it comes to drawing tablets, Wacom is one of the industry leaders. With virtually no lag and 8,192 levels of pressure sensitivity in the battery-free pen included, this no-screen tablet is the best one on the market for professional artists looking to create while providing a natural drawing experience.

While this writer's experience using it as a non-artist was simply for fun, professional artists and graphic designers will appreciate the Pro Pen 2's sensitive pressure points that allow you to go light and thin or dark and thick with your strokes. You can use the tablet to zoom in and out of your artwork, making fine-tuning details a breeze.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to creativity with the Wacom Intuos Pro tablet, and that is reinforced with a fully-customizable ExpressKeys located on the side of the active area. These buttons allow for artists to add their most-used tools for them to easily access.

Its lightweight design is perfect for using it on a desk or on your lap, and with multiple sizes available, you can use this practically anywhere. This tablet connects to both Windows and Mac devices.

The Kindle Oasis is the ultimate tablet for reading since it's a high-tech device with features geared toward helping you read. Even though this Kindle hasn't been updated by Amazon since 2019, it has adjustable warm light to make reading more comfortable at night. It also auto-adjusts light settings when you're reading in direct sunlight, automatically rotates for page orientation, and has a physical page turn button so flipping pages is easier than ever.

It's also waterproof (how many tablets can you say that about?), so you can read by the pool without worrying about cannonball splashes. And while it doesn't have a regular headphone jack, the Kindle Oasis supports Bluetooth connectivity, so you can use wireless headphones and speakers to listen to audiobooks or the screen reader function.

Amazon just updated this tablet model last year, making it faster and with a longer battery life. Not only does it have a kid-proof case built to withstand 3- to 7-year-olds, but it also comes with a free one-year subscription to Amazon Kids+.

Anne Leavitt, a former teacher and founder and CEO of Homeschool Newbie, told ZDNET that the Fire HD 8 Kids Tablet is the best tablet for children on the market: "Parents will appreciate the complete parental control features that allow them to set up profiles and customize content for each child," she said. "Plus, Amazon FreeTime Unlimited comes included with the tablet for one year."

The tablet's kid-friendly case is also worth mentioning, because it protects against drops and bumps, and it comes complete with an adjustable stand so your kids can go hands-free. But Amazon does offer you a two-year worry-free guarantee in case the tablet does succumb to playtime.

The 10th-generation iPad is my pick for the best tablet. Experts like tech author Dan Gookin and analyst Avi Greengart and ZDNET's own June Wan also agree. They all named the iPad as their favorite tablet today.

If you want to see quickly how the 10th-generation iPad specifically compares to the other tablets that made our list, see the handy chart below that compares factors like price, storage, and display size.

The biggest question you'll need to answer about any tablet purchase is what you plan on using it for: Do you just want something to read a comic book and binge on some Netflix shows while you walk on the treadmill? If so, then a Fire tablet or the base model iPad is going to be more than enough for you.

However, if you want to use a tablet more like a laptop, then you'll want to consider the iPad Pro, or one of the Surface devices. Here is a decision matrix that can help you choose which tablet is right for you:

I considered my own experiences in using some of these tablets, as well as the reviews of other ZDNET writers. I also researched the top tablets from renowned brands and paid attention to the tablets' feature sets, price points, and integrations with other products. Finally, I reached out to experts in various fields who have used tablets for their takes on which tablets are best and what features are most important to them.

When a tablet says that it is "Wi-Fi Only," that means that it requires a wireless internet connection to access things like email, websites, and apps. There are models available that give you the option to use LTE cellular data to connect to the internet, but if you aren't planning on traveling with your tablet, you can stick to a Wi-Fi only model.

It depends on what you're specifically looking for and your preferences. For technology author Dan Gookin, he prioritizes the operating system, "I look for software, which is why I recommend iPad over Android," he said. "Many Android apps are customized for a smartphone screen and can look awkward on a tablet." 041b061a72


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