Since the introduction of the Apple iPad, many smartphone makers jumped into the tablet market to offer better and cheaper alternatives to Windows or Android. The tablet has also replaced the need for a laptop to carry around for many users around. Not that we agree tablets can completely replace a laptop, but the portability of the device and the flexibility with what users can do with it, is the biggest selling factor of this category.
Today, with most of the consumer electronics companies offering multiple tablet models of different sizes, form-factors, usage patterns, and performance, we can easily guess that consumers who are new to this market can find it hard to select the right model. They need to choose the right tablet since a lot of money is being spent on flagship models. Our editors, who have good knowledge on tablets, have picked some of the best tablets that can be purchased from popular online stores in the UAE. Read through our top 10 tablet picks of 2017.
Without much introduction, Apple still stands as the best tablet maker in the market. While their usual tablet has got better over the years, the Cupertino company unveiled the all-new Apple iPad. There is no designation or version number for the new tablet and currently, it’s the cheapest 9.7-inch iPad that you can get in 2017. The resolution of the IPS screen is 1536 x 2048 and the display is scratch resistant. Powering the iPad is the Apple A9 processor along with PowerVR GT7600 GPU. This means you get a fast and snappy user experience with IOS 10.3. The camera on the rear side holds an 8MP sensor with an aperture of f2.4 and FaceTime camera on the front features a modest 1.2MP camera. The main camera is capable of shooting up to 1080 videos at 30fps. Stereo speakers and a headphone jack are present in this model since Apple is already on the verge of removing these on their flagship products.
The home button on the front side also features a fingerprint scanner. The battery included has a capacity of 8827 mAh. This helps users to use the tablet for about 10 hours of use. The Apple iPad (2017) will is sold in 32GB or 128GB internal storage options and there will be cellular versions who want LTE connectivity on the go.
If you’re looking for the perfect Apple iPad alternative in Android flavors, then how about checking out the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 tablet that was launched this year. While it may be a bit more expensive, the Tab S3 features a Super AMOLED display with 4:3 aspect ratio and the same 9.7-inch screen size. The device is powered by the Snapdragon 820 processor with 4GB RAM and runs on the latest Android 7.0 Nougat operating system. The tablet also has its own 4-way stereo speakers that are finely tuned by AKG and Harman. The Tab S3 is only available with 32GB of internal storage. But if you want further, you can always make use of MicroSD card expansion. The camera on the back panel is a 13MP shooter with a bright aperture of f1.9. The front camera on the tablet consists of a 5MP snapper. The main camera on the rear is capable of capturing 4K videos at 30fps.
While the battery in the tablet holds a capacity of 6000 mAh, users will be able to fast charge the device with a USB Type-C cable. There is a home button on the front side of the tablet that also doubles as a fingerprint scanner. The Samsung Tab S3 is 6mm thick and weighs 429g. There will also be an LTE version of the tablet for those who want to use high-speed internet when on the move.
If you don’t mind spending more money to own one of the fastest tablets in the market, then take a look at the all-new Apple iPad Pro 10.5. It’s not only Apple’s first ever 10-inch tablet in their line-up but also features powerful hardware that outpaces most of the competing models in the market. The IPS screen has a resolution of 1668 x 2224 and the pixel per density of the display is 265ppi. The display also features scratch resistance and the True-tone technology automatically corrects the lighting and colors of the screen based on the surrounding. The iPad Pro 10.5 comes with the latest Apple A10X Fusion processor with 4GB RAM. The extra RAM helps in certain applications such as the ones related to design and drawing. The tablet can be purchased with different storage options, that include 64GB, 256GB and a 512GB version. There is a 12MP camera on the rear if you want to take some snaps with f1.8 aperture.
The front camera features a 7MP camera with f2.2 aperture and a focal length of 22mm. This allows users to take a wide-range selfie as groups. The primary 12MP camera is capable of recording videos up to 4K at 30fps. As for the audio, the tablet holds 4 stereo speaker grills, two on the left and right side of the device. As usual, the front-facing home button also supports as the fingerprint scanner.
In a market where laptop makers depend on Microsoft for the Windows 10 operating system, the Redmond company makes their own 2-in-1 tablets and convertibles called the Surface series of devices. The latest device released this year is the Microsoft Surface Pro, in which the company appears to have restarted the name scheming of the “Surface Pro” line-up. The new Surface Pro can be purchased with different options such as with the Intel i5, Intel i7 or even the battery-efficient Core m3 chip. Storage options start from 128GB up to 512GB and 1TB SSDs and the RAM options start from 4GB and up to 8GB and 16GB DDR4.
The display is 12.3-inch in size with PixelSense technology and the resolution of the screen is 2736 x 1824. However, the aspect ratio of the tablet’s screen is 3:2, which is a better screen ratio for reading documents and articles. The tablet also offers connectivity for a full-sized USB 3.0 port, a 3.5mm headphone jack, a mini display port and a MicroSDXC card slot if you feel to expand the storage or transfer data from other devices. The Surface Pro also features the latest 802.11ac WiFi networking and Bluetooth 4.1. There is a pair of stereo speakers with Dolby Audio Premium technology. The tablet also holds an 8MP camera on the rear and a 5MP camera on the front with Skype HD quality video chat. Another major design feature is the built-in kick stand of the tablet that lets it sit in any table.
When it comes to innovative designs for tablets, Lenovo is one of the best in the market. The company recently released the Yoga Book, a 2-in-1 multimedia tablet that features a 10.1-inch IPS LED screen with 1920 x 1200 resolution and a detached keyboard that doubles as a touchpad. It means when the users want a keyboard, the capacitive keys get activated and when they want to draw a picture or write something, the pad mode gets activated. Its called the Create Pad. That’s not all. The screen hinge can rotate the display to a full 360-degrees. You can either lay flat the display and the Create Pad, or swing it fully for a full-tablet experience, or use it in tent mode to watch movies.
The tablet is available in both Android and Windows 10. The Yoga Book is powered by the Atom X5 processor with 4GB low power DDR3 RAM that’s quite sufficient to run Android or Windows 10 OS. The 8500 mAh battery is capable of delivering a work life of 15 hours for general use and up to 70 days of standby time. There is also a 2MP camera on the front portion of the tablet and an 8MP camera on the rear. The tablet features support for the latest WiFi 802.11ac wireless connections. The speakers of the tablet are backed by Dolby Atmos audio technology. The Yoga Book weighs only 0.69kg.
If you’re looking for a Surface Pro alternative, Samsung also makes premium-level Windows tablets. The one we chose is the Galaxy TabPro S, which is impressively 6.35mm thick and runs on a full version of Windows 10. The display of the tablet is 12-inch in size and uses a Super AMOLED panel. This means users will get solid colors, good contrast ratio, deep blacks and great viewing angles. The aspect ratio is also the same as Surface Pro tablets. The TabPro S also features two 5MP cameras, each placed on front and rear sides of the tablet. There is a USB Type-C port that’s used to charge the device and also to transfer data. When it comes to performance, the tablet is powered by the Core M processor. Thanks to its efficiency and TDP, the tablet doesn’t have any fan vents, making the device fan-less while running a full version of Windows 10. There is 128GB of internal SSD storage and 4GB RAM, which is more than enough for a snappy Windows experience. However, for those who have a lot of data to store, 128GB may not be enough.
The tablet also holds a large 5200 mAh battery that’s designed to work up to 10.5 hours of work based use. The tablet comes with its own detachable keyboard cover that also includes a trackpad. However, keep in mind that the keys in the detachable keyboard cover aren’t backlit.
If you are one of those who would like to watch movies from a tablet while you do some work, say during cooking sessions or when working out, then here is the Samsung Galaxy View tablet. The main feature of the tablet is its large 18.4-inch TFT screen with Full HD resolution. The device also has its own kickstand so you can place the tablet on any flat surface. The Galaxy View may be large but it runs with the octa-core Exynos 7580 processor with 2GB RAM. Users can make use of the primary 2.1MP camera with f2.2 aperture lens. Storage options include 32GB and 64GB capacity models and you can also upgrade the storage with a MicroSD card slot.
The battery of the device is rated to hold a capacity of 5700 mAh. The tablet is said to be capable for up to eight hours of multimedia playback and hundreds of hours of music playback. The Galaxy View also sports stereo speakers for good audio experience and a 3.5mm headphone jack for those who want some privacy. The tablet is 11.9mm thick and holds a weight of 2.65kg. Users can also make use of nano SIMs for LTE connectivity, if you plan to take the Galaxy View for a picnic. That said, the tablet supports the latest generation 802.11 a, b, g, n, and ac WiFI standards with dual-band capability for fast internet download speeds along with Bluetooth 4.1 for fast wireless transfers between devices.
If you’re looking for a cheaper alternative for the Galaxy View, then how about the Lenovo Yoga Tab 2. Lenovo makes some great Android tablets at an affordable rate and cheaper than the tablets that we mentioned above. The display is a 10.3-inch screen with Full HD resolution so you can watch HD content movies and videos. The internal storage capacity is 16GB, which may not be enough for today’s needs but can be expanded up to 64GB using MicroSD cards. The camera on the rear is 8MP, which should be able to produce decent images and the 1.6MP selfie camera can be used for video calls. Users can also use WiFi or LTE connectivity for high-speed internet. The battery of the Yoga Tab 2 is one of the main selling points, featuring a capacity of 9600 mAh. The thickness of the tablet is 7.2mm and the weight of the device is 619g.
With the built-in kickstand, the Yoga Tablet 2 can be set in different positions while on a flat surface. The tablet is powered by an Intel Atom processor and 2GB RAM to run Android 5.0 Lollipop OS. WiFi includes an 802.11 a/b/g/n module and Bluetooth 4.0. The Yoga Tablet 2 also is sold with a smaller 8-inch display variant for those who want more portability on the go for a cheaper price.
If you’re looking for an affordable and a good performing alternative for the Apple iPad Mini, then take a look at the Xiaomi Mi Pad 2. The tablet gives the same experience as Apple’s offerings with a 7.9-inch IPS display and 4:3 aspect ratio. The IPS screen also offers a sharp resolution of 1536 x 2048. The dimensions of the tablet are impressive with just 7mm of thickness and weighs only 322g. The MiPad 2 is powered by the Intel X5 Z8500 processor along with 2GB RAM. Interestingly, you can buy the tablet with Android or Windows 10. However, only the 64GB storage model comes with Windows 10 and the 16GB internal storage model comes with Android OS.
There is an 8MP image sensor as a part of the primary camera on the rear side with an aperture of f2.0 and the selfie camera features a 5MP shooter. Audio is taken care of with stereo speakers and the tablet charges via a USB Type-C port. The battery life of the Mi Pad 2 is 6190 mAh in capacity. This model doesn’t feature a SIM slot so it may not be for those who want LTE connectivity. That said, the tablet supports 802.11 ac WiFi standards and dual-band wireless connections. Bluetooth 4.1 is also included for speedy wireless transfers of data and files between different devices and low energy consumption when the tablet is connected to Bluetooth headphones.
If premium-quality build is your concern, then try out the Samsung Tab S2. The Android tablet features an 8-inch Super AMOLED display, which guarantees that the colors are good and the viewing angles are great. The resolution of the screen is rated to be 1536 x 2048. The tablet is 5.6mm thick and that’s very impressive. The weight of the Galaxy Tab S2 is 272g. Inside the tablet is the powerful octa-core processor that goes at the maximum speed of 1.9 GHz. The RAM is 3GB, which is plenty for running Android 7.0 Nougat. The storage capacity of the tablet is 32GB and it can be further expanded using a MicroSD card. The 8MP camera on the rear side supports video recording up to 2K at 30fps.
However, the primary camera only features a 2.1MP selfie snapper. The tablet is capable of fast download speeds, thanks to the support for 802.11 ac WiFi and dual-band capability. Bluetooth 4.1 with Low Energy lets users stream music to compatible devices without consuming too much power. The battery of the device is 4000 mAh and is said to have a battery life for 74 hours of music playback. The Galaxy Tab S2 also is available with LTE capabilities. The tablet is available in black, white and gold colors. The Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 also features a soft matte rear panel, which helps users to hold the device without any strains for long use.