Best Android Tablet 2018: 5 best Android tablets right now

We’ve rounded up some of the best Android-toting tablets worth your cash right now. Small, big or a replacement for your laptop, we’ve got something for everyone.

The world of tablets moves far slower than smartphones, so you won’t lose out if buying a tablet now. It won’t feel horribly out of date in a year’s time, maybe even two of three years down the line.

As ever, there’s plenty of choice on the market. We review dozens of tablets every year, but our round-up only features six models, so you can be confident these really are the very best of the best.

Whether you want a cheap tablet for your children, or something to help you get stuff done, there’s something for everyone.

Use the drop down above to start browsing the guide, or read on for more tablet-buying advice. If you’d prefer an iPad, check out our best tablets roundup.

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Key features:

  • Brilliant gaming experience
  • Impressive build quality
  • Excellent display
  • Review price: £239.99

(UPDATE: The K1 isn’t sold by Nvidia anymore and it’s very hard to find. But if you do find it then it’s still one of the best small Android tablets around)

For consumers who are seriously into gaming, look no further than the Nvidia Shield Tablet. It’s far and away the best tablet for gamers on the market right now, having been built to deliver the best experience possible.

Under the hood, the custom-built Nvidia Tegra K1 processor clocked at 2.2GHz combined with a 192-core Kepler GPU and 2GB of RAM ensure smooth performance, even while simultaneously running high-end Android games and multiple apps.

In terms of design, it looks a little like an enlarged HTC One M8, which is no bad thing. The front-facing speakers above and below the screen, along with a pair of speakers on the top and bottom edges, deliver sound that can easily fill a room.

At 9.2mm thick, it isn’t the sleekest number we’ve seen, but the tapered edges make it comfortable to hold in one hand. The 8-inch, 1920 x 1200 display delivers rich colours but isn’t quite bright enough.

Premium Tegra-optimised games and the £49.99 Shield Controller cost extra, but they’re worth it if you’re willing to splash the cash.

 

Read the full Nvidia Shield Tablet K1 review

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Key Features:

  • 10.2-inch, 2560 x 1800 screen
  • Optional keyboard with magnetic hinge
  • Outstanding battery life and performance

The Pixel C sits, in essence, somewhere between an iPad and an iPad Pro. It’s an attractive and super-powerful 10.2-inch tablet, and an optional keyboard makes this the best Android tablet for working on ever.

The Pixel C clips to the keyboard magnetically and the hinge has an awesome smooth action that makes it very versatile.

Of course, you benefit from a clean, unblemished version of Android, and Google has tweaked a few things to make it work better on tablets.

It still suffers somewhat from a comparative lack of tablet optimised apps – compared to the iPad – but Android fans shouldn’t worry about that.



At time of review the Google Pixel C was available for £400 (without keyboard).

Read the full Google Pixel C review

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Key features:

  • Stunning HDR OLED display
  • Built-in fingerprint scanner
  • Snapdragon 821 CPU, 4GB RAM
  • Review price: £599

Samsung has a strong track record in the tablets space. The firm was one of the first to start building Android tablets, manufacturing Google’s original Nexus 10.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 is one of the best Android tablets around, with arguably the best display on any tablet. The HDR OLED panel is stunning and makes this a great device for watching movies.

The S Pen stylus is included for drawing, and a keyboard is available too if you want to the Tab S3 more like a laptop. A Snapdragon 821 CPU runs the show on the inside, with 4GB of RAM. It feels very fast, although we’d like to see better multi-tasking in Samsung’s form of Android 7.0

Read the full Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 review

Amazon Fire 7

4 of 5

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Key features:

  • 7-inch, 1024 x 600-pixel IPS screen
  • Quad-core CPU
  • 8/16GB storage
  • Alexa
  • Review price: £49.99

The Amazon Fire 7 is one of the cheapest 7-inch tablets around, but it doesn’t really sacrifice too many features for the price.

The Fire 7 offers up a decent-quality IPS screen, a surprisingly powerful processor and very good battery life.

It isn’t as slim as we’d like and it uses Amazon’s more restrictive Fire OS rather than Android – but it remains a corker for children or budget buyers.

Read the full Amazon Fire 7 review

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Key features:

  • 10-inch 1080 screen
  • Alexa hands-free
  • Fire OS
  • Colourful design
  • Review price: £149.99

If you’re in the market for an Android tablet built for entertainment and you don’t want to break the bank, the new Amazon Fire HD 10 is a great choice.

The 10-inch 1080p display is the best on any current Fire tablet, proving superb for content from Prime and Netflix. It’s mostly fast, too, although Fire OS still has some issues with lag – and, of course, there’s no access to Google Play.

Battery life sits at around 10 hours, there’s 2GB of RAM and either 32 or 64GB of storage – but this can be expanded via microSD cards.

 

Read the full Kindle Fire HD 10 review